As a pregnant woman, you’ve probably received all sorts of advice on what not to eat during pregnancy. So, how about what to eat?
Well, while there might be a lot of DON’Ts, there are also a number of DOs to keep both the mother and her fetus healthy the whole time.
So, maintaining a very healthy meal with adequate and required nutrients and vitamins is important during pregnancy as a poor diet and excess weight gain can lead to increased risk of gestational diabetes and pregnancy or birth complications.
Here are 6 healthy Nigerian meals every pregnant woman should consider adding to her food table.
Not only will beans (red beans, particularly) help your body balance hormones and produce enough breast milk for your baby, it helps strengthen the immune system and aid blood circulation as a result of the high amount of antioxidants, protein, omega 3 fats, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin B1.
Beans is also rich in iron, which is very vital for the development and formation of your baby’s brain and eye.
2. Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potato is rich in Vitamin A, a vitamin essential for growth in your fetus, which is why a pregnant woman is advised to increase her consumption of Vitamin A.
However, consuming a high quantity of animal-based sources of vitamin A may cause some sort of toxicity, which is why plant-based vitamin A sources like sweet potato is a good choice.
3. Dairy products
Dairy products like low-fat milk, greek yogurt, and the likes are good sources of calcium and high-quality protein which helps meet the nutritional needs of your fetus.
Vegetables are low-calorie foods packed with a lot of vitamins and minerals essential to both you and your baby.
Vegetables (like efo, ugwu, waterleaf, bitter leaf etc) are rich in antioxidants, which will help support and protect your baby’s cell growth and immune system.
Moreso, as a pregnant woman, eating lots of vegetables will help aid your digestion and help prevent constipation, a common problem during pregnancy.
Eggs are not only a better alternative to red meat as they also rich in high-quality protein but they are also a good source of choline, which is essential for many processes in the body including brain development.
A single whole egg contains roughly 113 mg of choline, which is about 25% of the recommended daily intake for a pregnant woman.
Fish is a very rich source of omega-3 fatty acids which can help in which also helps in brain development and also help enhance high IQ (intelligence quotient) in babies, leaving you and your baby healthy.