Pregnancy is one of the most stressful periods in a woman’s life. A health and a fitness program before, during, and post-pregnancy helps the body in adjusting to the various growth and recovery stages. Nutritional needs should also be properly met. During pregnancy, maximum safety for the mother and child should be of prime importance rather than weight gain.
Nutrition in pregnancy significantly affects maternal health as well as the baby’s well-being. Pregnant women should have nutrition counseling from nutritional experts. Supplementary food items are also necessary for proper growth of the infant. Pregnant women should abstain from alcohol, smoking and drugs. Caffeine and artificial sweeteners should be used to their minimum. Diet and fat free foods should be avoided but should rather contain foods like; protein foods like cereals, milk and milk products, whole-grain cereals, bread, fruits and green leafy vegetables.
Exposure to sunlight also helps as it provides with vitamin D which is very essential for our body. Multi vitamins should not be taken during pregnancy as they may result in fetal malformation. Vegan women who eat neither eggs nor milk products should have their diets reviewed for adequate calories and proteins. They should also take oral vitamin B12 supplements during pregnancy and lactation.
Along with this, the protein intake also increases. Appropriate caloric intake in pregnancy helps prevent the problems associated with low birth weight. Strict salt restriction is not necessary but consumption of salted snack foods and other prepared foods which has high salt content should be restricted. Proper diet and nutrition during pregnancy is a must for healthy development of the baby.