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What Pregnant Women Should Eat

Updated on January 8, 2013

Nutritional Advice For The Pregnant Woman

Women are often asking what they can and cant eat when pregnant, so here i have listed the simple do's and don'ts when carrying a baby.

Bullet Points To Keep It Simple!

  • Avoid soft mould ripened cheese like Stilton, Brie, Camembert or Blue veined cheese.
  • Ensure folic acid intake is high (green vegetables, nuts, seeds and pulses) to enhance iron absorption and prevent birth defects, use a 400mcg folic acid supplement when trying to conceive through to the 12th week of pregnancy.
  • Make sure eggs are cooked so the whites and yolks are solid to avoid salmonella poisoning.
  • Avoid eating any type of pate. (even vegetable ones)
  • Beware of liver - liver products and supplements containing vitamin A which can build up quickly to toxic levels in the blood.
  • Avoid Marlin, Swordfish, Shark and limit your tuna intake to protect the developing foetal nervous system as these contain higher levels of methyl mercury.
  • You need to eat sufficient calcium (dark green veg, figs, sunflower seeds, milk, fortified soy milk) as the foetal skeleton is going through the ossification process.
  • You need to ensure you eat sufficient protein (meat, milk, cheese, nuts) for growth and repair in the developing foetus.
  • Plenty of fruit and vegetables are needed - 5 portions a day is advised
  • You need to eat plenty of iron (red meat, bread, pasta, cereals) for a higher turnover of red blood cells.
  • Use 10mcg vitamin D supplement daily.
  • Ensure adequate daily fluid intake - this is important to regulate body temperature effectivly.
  • Ideally, drink no alcohol during pregnancy, if you do drink, limit your intake to two units of alcohol per week.
  • Limit caffeine intake to less than 300mg per day to prevent low birth weight or miscarriage.

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