Upbringing of children is one of the biggest challenges faced by mankind especially in this era. The responsibility starts right from the moment the baby is conceived. Oh no… in fact it starts from the moment the couple plans to have a baby. When the couple is ready to have a baby it’s a good practice to consult a gynecologist. The doctor carries out some tests and lets you know in case of any issues or precautions to be taken. Also, you would be advised to take some vitamin supplements for folic acid, calcium etc…, Once the baby is conceived the sole source of food and nutrition for the kid is mother. Hence ,it is crucial to have a Diet Chart for Pregnant Lady.

So let’s, first understand the additional food requirement by a pregnant lady and then have a pregnancy diet chart for each trimester. The diet chart for pregnant lady mentioned in this article just mentions the additional nutrient that should be taken by a pregnant lady.

 

GENERAL GUIDELINES:

Throughout the tenure ensure that your diet is balanced and you consume additional food rich in folic acid, calcium, protein and iron to meet the nutritional requirement of the baby.

  • Folic Acid: Food rich in Vitamin B/Folic acid avoids birth defects related mainly with brain and spine.
  • Calcium: Is essential for the development of strong bones and teeth
  • Iron: To avoid anemia and supply more oxygen to baby.
  • Protein: For development and building of organs for the baby.

The average calorie intake should be 2200 and if you are underweight have around 2400 calories. In case you are overweight reduce it to 2000 calories.

Taking dry fruits in morning soaked in water overnight is also a good practice.

Foods to Avoid:

  • Alcohol: Say NO to alcohol and smoking during pregnancy.
  • Fish with high level of mercury: Should be avoided during pregnancy. E.g.: swordfish, tuna, shark, king mackerel, tilefish
  • Unpasteurized food: Avoid unpasteurized products. Drink milk only after boiling.
  • Raw or under-cooked meat: Should be avoided. Half boiled and raw egg should also not be eaten.
  • Limited intake of caffeine: Caffeine intake should be limited to around 150 mg per day.

First trimester

More focus should be given to food rich in folic acid and iron.

As it is difficult to get sufficient amount of folic acid and iron from food doctors usually advise supplements rich in folic acid and iron during this period.

  • B6: Banana, brown rice, salmon
  • Folic acid: orange, bran flakes, asparagus, broccoli
  • Iron: Chicken, egg, sardine

Nausea is the major concern during this trimester. Including ginger in your food gives relief to nausea.

Second Trimester

Food rich in calcium, vitamin d and omega 3 should be taken during this trimester.

  • Omega 3: salmon, sardine, walnuts
  • Calcium: milk &milk products, almond, sesame seeds
  • Vitamin D: mushroom, tofu.

Constipation is one common problem faced during this period. So have lot of fibre rich food and drink lot of water.

Third Trimester

Food rich in Vitamin K and food that boosts your energy should be taken in abundance during this trimester. An additional 150-200 calories of food can be taken during this period.

  • Vitamin K: Melon, wholegrain, green beans.

Indigestion and acidity is the major issue during the last trimester. Rather than eating 3 heavy meals split your diet into 6 light and nutritious diet. This will help to control acidity during third trimester.

Below is a sample diet plan for each trimester. Once the dietary requirement are clear you can manipulate the diet according to your taste and style.

Pregnancy Diet Chart

Misconceptions:

  • Eat for 2: This doesn’t mean that you should take double the calorie. Have more nutritional food. Around 400 calories of extra food is sufficient for pregnant ladies compared to non-pregnant ladies.
  • Can’t drink coffee: You can have coffee in limited quantity, ensure you don’t drink too much coffee as too much caffeine is not good. Limit your coffee intake to max 2 cups per day or 200 mg of caffeine per day.
  • Eating fish is okay: As such fish is healthy and contains lots of nutrients. But few fishes contain dangerous level of mercury in them and might prove to be harmful during pregnancy. Do not eat fish that has mercury content like swordfish, tuna, shark, king mackerel, tilefish.

This explains the diet chart for pregnant lady. Right nourishment is important during pregnancy as  your baby’s growth and development is dependent on your diet. Eating during pregnancy doesn’t mean over indulgence, but it means that you consume a wholesome, balanced diet to meet the increased nutritional requirement. A compromised diet during pregnancy can lead to unsuitable weight gain, numerous nutrient deficiencies and other pregnancy complications in mothers, and the babies could be born with low birth weight and inherited abnormalities.

Along with the diet, please refer to pregnancy tips for normal delivery, to ensure safe and smooth delivery.

It is important for you to consume a healthy balanced diet as explained in the Pregnancy Diet Chart and take nutritional supplements as prescribed by your doctor. Speak to your doctor if you suspect you may be at risk of nutritional deficiency.