#Bright4Mum: #Nutrition is Key to Your Baby’s Development During #Pregnancy

“You’re pregnant.” Those can be very exciting news or scary news for any woman or couple. This becomes a journey that changes your life in so many ways as you transition to motherhood. The fears and questions as you now have to make life changing decisions plus all the advice and questions that will be thrown your way from everyone around you can be overwhelming but your health and mental stability comes first.

Considering that each journey, each pregnancy is different for each woman we have to look at the one that is central and key to the pregnancy. The health of both mother and child.

Image: Bright4Africa

Eating healthy, pregnant or not is a habit that should be practiced ritually by all women of all ages.  As a pregnant mother, your health and the health of your baby should be a top priority. It’s not just about consumption, filling up the stomach or satisfying a craving, but we need to look at the nutrition of the food you are consuming.

No matter how many weeks are left on your countdown calendar, it’s never too late to start! Supplying your own body with a tasty blend of nutritious foods can improve your fertility, keep you feeling healthy during pregnancy, and pave the way for an easier labour.

Most women need 300 calories a day or more during at least the last six months of pregnancy than they did before they were pregnant. But not all calories are equal. Your baby needs healthy foods that are packed with nutrients – not “empty calories” such as those found in soft drinks, candies, and desserts.

Well-nourished women are more likely to have healthy babies and keep them healthy by providing the breastmilk they need to thrive – exclusive breastfeeding from birth (starting within he first hour) to 6 months and continued breastfeeding to 2 years and beyond. Click me I got your breastfeeding benefits.

Nausea, heartburn, and constipation are not biased! They will afflict women regardless of healthy living. However, women who regularly eat healthy foods, drink plenty of water, exercise regularly, and avoid excess sugar and fat may significantly reduce these uncomfortable symptoms.

You need more protein, iron, calcium, and folic acid than you did before pregnancy. Not matter what your budget is, vegan or not, you can always get and eat healthy nutritious food.

FOOD AND NUTRITION:

The role each type of food that you should consume: Download and Pin Me

Your Nutrition Aids In The Growth Of The Baby

 

WHAT TO AVOID:

Your immune system is suppressed during pregnancy, so it is easier to get sick from food.

  • Eating raw sushi is not recommended during pregnancy. It can lead to symptoms that may result in a minor sickness or severe enough to cause miscarriage or shun fetal growth.
  • Unpasteurized cheeses – may contain listeria
  • Avoid raw milk and dairy products made from unpasteurized milk, such as Brie, feta, Camembert, Roquefort, blue-veined, queso blanco, queso fresco, and queso Panela. They contain listeria which is harmful for the baby.
  • Alcohol – Hinders growth and development
  • Alcohol is an absolute no-no during pregnancy. Consume less or more, no level of alcohol consumption is considered safe.
  • Alcohol deprives the cells of nutrients and oxygen thus hindering normal development. It has permanent devastating effects on intellectual abilities and physical growth.
  • Avoiding the use of Processed Foods: Many of such foods are pre-packaged and they contain a lot of sodium. At the same time, they also have a lot of food preservatives.
  • Tobacco
  • Herbal supplements
  • Vitamin and mineral supplements that are NOT recommended by your physician, nurse, or midwife

To be pregnant healthy, the intake of such foods must be controlled.

 

FOOD HYGIENE AND SAFETY: 

A pregnant woman and her baby are at a greater risk for food-borne illness. Harmful bacteria that can be present on food can cause pregnancy complications and even death of the baby. Follow these cooking tips to keep your food safe.

  • Wash hands in soapy, warm water before cooking
  • Keep counters and cooking areas clean and sanitized
  • Cook meats, fish, or poultry until well done to prevent the risk of food borne illness
  • Keep all meat, fish, and poultry refrigerated until you are ready to cook it.
  • Defrost all meat, fish, and poultry in the refrigerator and not on the counter.
  • Fresh meat, fish, and poultry must be consumed within 48 hours of being purchased or should be frozen.
  • Heat hot dogs and deli/luncheon meats until steaming hot or do not eat at all.
  • Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold.
  • Store food promptly after eating. Place hot food in shallow containers so that they will cook quickly in the refrigerator. Do not stack containers of warm food in the refrigerator.
  • Use leftovers quickly.
  • Do not store eggs on the refrigerator door.
  • Keep your refrigerator at 35-40 F.
  • If you question the freshness or safety of a food product at all, avoid it. Remember, when in doubt, throw it out

Maintain a reasonable exercise program throughout your pregnancy. Walking and swimming are considered healthy activities during pregnancy but always consult with your health care provider before starting a new exercise program.

 

REFERENCES:

https://www.cussonsbaby.co.ke/blog/food-to-eat-not-eat-during-pregnancy/#.WmjQAqiWbIV

http://americanpregnancy.org/pregnancy-health/pregnancy-nutrition/

http://www.upmc.com/patients-visitors/education/nutrition/pages/nutrition-during-pregnancy-building-a-healthy-baby.aspx

http://americanpregnancy.org/pregnancy-health/pregnancy-nutrition/

http://www.qualityforlife.com/en_ZA/news/the-foundational-role-of-nutrition-in-pregnancy.html

http://www.qualityforlife.com/en_ZA/news/giving-your-body-what-it-needs-during-pregnancy.html

 

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LindaAfya is our platform as warriors to create and raise awareness on health issues both chronic and invisible illnesses that affect us. #YourVoiceMatters #MyHealthMyResposibility

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