When you’re pregnant, what you eat and drink is the main source of nourishment for your baby. Eating a healthy diet is one of the best things you can do for your baby’s health. In order to get the nutrients you need, you must eat from a variety of food groups, including fruits and vegetables, breads and grains, protein sources and dairy products.
Dieting to lose weight during pregnancy is not recommended and can be dangerous to you and your baby. You will need about 300 extra calories a day in the second trimester, and about 450 extra calories a day in the third trimester.
- soft, unpasteurised cheeses
- unpasteurised milk, juices, and apple cider
- raw eggs
- raw or under cooked meats, fish, or shellfish
- processed meats
- fish that are high in mercury, including swordfish or mackerel
As well as eating balance, your body requires extra vitamins, which are the B vitamin folic acid and vitamin D. Folic acid is important for pregnancy, as it can help to prevent birth defects. Birth defects occur within the first 3-4 weeks of pregnancy. So it’s important to have folic acid in your system during those early stages when your baby’s brain and spinal cord are developing.
Vitamin D invests in the well being of your baby by supporting healthy bone development as it regulates the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body. You need to take vitamin D during your pregnancy to provide your baby with enough vitamin D for the first few months of its life. It will benefit your baby if you can carry on taking vitamin D while breastfeeding too.