Pregnancy cravings. They can set in like a monster snarling to get out of a cage. But with some proper pregnancy nutrition and healthy eating, you can tame the beast while growing a happy, healthy baby.
Our own bodies and our growing babies crave certain nutrients; therefore it’s important to feed and supplement our bodies well during pregnancy. Because, for instance, if you don’t get enough calcium in your diet, your baby’s own calcium needs will be met by taking it from your bones.
Which could lead to Osteoporosis later in life.
So it’s best to make great eating and supplementing decisions now to make sure you’re both provided for in the long run, especially when it comes to getting the recommended amount of calcium.
11 of the most nutritious foods to eat while pregnant to grow a healthy baby
Learn what nutrients are imperative for pregnant women and their growing babies, what foods you should be eating and how you can supplement your diet to make sure you’re getting enough during this crucial period of development.
Please talk with your doctor, midwife, or healthcare provider regarding any concerns before taking any supplements. This post is not intended to address or diagnose any medical conditions. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products and/or foods are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
Packed with vitamins and fatty acids great for building little brains, they are a relatively inexpensive source of protein.
They’re actually the only plant source of vitamin D which helps with calcium absorption and they’re full of other vitamins like niacin which could reduce digestive discomfort. Just make sure you choose some of the more popular varieties and cook them up before eating them.
It is recommended to ingest 600 IU per day of Vitamin D including for pregnant women. A little time eating your breakfast in the sun each morning, eating vitamin rich foods, and ensuring that you’re also supplementing is important.
Eating just a half cup of pumpkin seeds can be 25% of your daily intake of magnesium, increase your zinc levels, and is also a great vegetarian source of iron.
Over 17% of pregnant woman are diagnosed with iron deficiency in the US which increases the need for iron rich foods and supplementation.
Dark Leafy Greens
Kale, spinach, bok choy, collard greens and others are all nutritional powerhouses. While we all know they’re high in fiber, they’re also excellent sources of folate, iron, vitamin K, and even calcium. In fact they are great dietary sources of calcium,
These nutrients are important because folic acid prevents neural tube defects during pregnancy. All women should consume 400 micrograms per day. And calcium plays an important role in strengthening bones and teeth, as well as helping muscles including the heart and nerves function properly.
It’s a teeny-tiny seed that’s a complete protein and can also help sustain energy. It includes omega fatty acids and can be added to drinks, yogurts, and all sorts of foods. Which makes it an overall win, especially since the early days of pregnancy can be the hardest to eat anything.
Almonds are a great dietary source of calcium. Since calcium isn’t manufactured in the body, it’s a quick and easy way to implement it into your diet. They also make a significant contribution to iron and magnesium intake by eating just one cup of almonds as a snack when you get munchy.
Not only is salmon rich in high-quality protein, but it is also an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids which help in baby brain development and could potentially also improve mom’s mood.
Add it to a dark leafy salad with chia, almonds, and pumpkin seeds and you’re having a great nutritional day for your pregnancy!
Greek yogurt in particular is super high in protein. And you’ll need at the bare minimum 80g of protein each day to sustain yourself and your growing baby. Because yogurt is versatile it’s a great staple to have on hand. You can add fruit and or chia to it, blend it into smoothies, make dips and dressings out of it, etc..
While it can be a source of vitamins A and C, seaweed is one of the only sources of the extremely important nutrient iodine. It can be eaten roasted, as seaweed salad, and flakes can even be added to smoothies and sauces.
Iodine is required for normal brain development and growth, however, iodine deficiency is becoming more common. During pregnancy iodine requirements increase with a recommended intake of 150 – 220 micrograms per day.
Also known as garbanzo beans, they can be eaten roasted, blended into a hummus, and like you would eat any other bean. They contain both fiber and protein and are nutritionally packed with even surprising nutrients like calcium.
Molasses has a few hidden treasures inside it’s sweet, sticky goodness. Just one tablespoon has 15% of your daily manganese needs, which is crucial for normal brain and nerve function, but also calcium absorption. Manganese helps the body form connective tissue, bones and more making it an important nutrient during pregnancy.
Why you should still take daily supplements during pregnancy
Even when eating a truly healthy diet while pregnant, it’s important to take your supplements. You want to make sure that you are getting everything you need to both care for yourself and grow that precious little human inside of you.
Many multivitamins, prenatal vitamins and mineral supplements provide only 20-30% of the recommended amount of calcium for women who are pregnant so it’s especially important to take your calcium supplements daily.
Women need 1000 mg of daily calcium to meet recommended daily requirements and Viactiv Calcium Soft Chews are intended to help achieve this as a supplement to diet/food sources. They sent me both chocolate and caramel flavors and have been a life-saver for me early in my third pregnancy. It has been so hard to eat but choosing a Viactiv soft chew has been easier on me to make sure I am getting the recommended amounts of calcium.
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More on Pregnancy & Nutrition
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Learn more about Viactiv at www.Viactiv.com.
This is a product-provided, sponsored conversation on behalf of Viactiv that contains affiliate links. I received Viactiv products for my own personal use. This post is not intended to address or diagnose any medical conditions. All opinions, text and experiences are my own. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Please speak with your healthcare provider regarding any medical concerns.
Kara is an author and advocate for positive, grace-filled parenting. She is homeschooler to her 4 children living in Boston, MA and believes in creative educational approaches to help kids dive deeper into a rich learning experience. She has her degree in Secondary Education & Adolescent Childhood Development and is passionate about connecting with and helping other parents on their journey to raise awesome kids!