Pregnancy is a trying time for all the women who get to go through the experience. There are a number of significant changes that the pregnant women often undergo during this period. Some of these changes include the gain of body weight as well as the expansion of breasts in preparation for the new baby.
Most of the time, it is not always easy for the women to cope with these changes. The period is especially more trying for the first time mothers who are undergoing the experience for the very first time and who have never gone through the same any time before in their lives.
Due to the health issues as well as the new and changing nutritional needs of the new parents, it is important to put a lot of thought and consideration when choosing a healthy diet for pregnant women.
The diet that is adopted by any expectant mother should be selected while bearing in mind the health and nutritional requirements of both the parents of the unborn child as well as the unborn child itself. There is no magic formula for selecting a healthy diet for pregnant women.
This statement however should not be misconstrued to mean that the selection of the best diet is simply a matter of choice and preference or that such a choice should be based entirely on trial and error.
On the contrary, there is an elaborate process of selection which, if followed diligently, should lead to the adoption of a diet that will best be able to satisfy the health and nutritional needs of both the expectant mothers and their unborn babies.
How to choose a healthy diet for pregnant women
The basic principles of nutrition that are employed by regular, normal people throughout the word should be applied in the selection of a healthy diet for pregnant women. This is because both the expectant mother and the unborn baby are first and foremost human, and as such they are going to need similar basic nutrients to remain healthy. Thus, pregnant women should be given diets that are rich in vegetables, fruits, lean proteins and whole grains, just as you would provide any other individual.
Of course, the intake of these foods will differ in the details concerning quantities and amounts to be consumed since the expectant mothers have special needs that differ from the needs of other people.
When selecting a healthy diet for pregnant women, there are a number of special considerations that have to be made as regards the quantities of different nutrients that are to be consumed. One such nutrient that should be controlled specifically is the intake of folic acid and folates. These are nutrients that have severally been linked to the formation of birth defects especially when they are not consumed completely.
Folate has been known to prevent the occurrence of brain and spinal cord abnormalities as well as defects of the neutral tube. Medical healthcare providers recommend the daily intake of about 800 micrograms of folic acid or folates for the duration of the pregnancy. The best sources of these nutrients are fortified cereals and leafy, green vegetables.