Eating for Two: The Importance of a Healthy Diet During Pregnancy
The foods you eat are crucial to your overall health and wellness. When you are pregnant, the importance of a healthy diet is only magnified, so be sure that you are getting the right amount of calories and key nutrients to support you and your baby.
Folic acid can help to prevent neural tube defects, such as spina bifida, cleft lip, and congenital heart disease. Try to get at least 600 micrograms of folic acid every day by consuming foods such as whole wheat breads, citrus fruits, green leafy vegetables, and legumes.
Iron is also crucial to your diet, as it helps red blood cells transport oxygen through your body. Good sources of iron include poultry, fish, lean red meats, and dried fruits.
Your body needs calcium during pregnancy—and if it is not obtained from your diet, it will be taken from your bones instead, increasing your risk of osteoporosis. Try to incorporate low-fat or nonfat dairy products, fortified orange juice, and green leafy vegetables into your diet.
Food Safety Tips
There are number of foodborne illnesses that may harm both you and your developing baby, so it is crucial to practice food safety. Some tips for staying safe include the following:
- Washing your hands before preparing or eating food
- Avoid cross-contamination of raw meats/poultry with other foods
- Thoroughly reheating leftovers
- Avoid hot dogs or lunch meats unless reheated until steaming
- Drink only pasteurized milk and juice products
- Avoid soft or raw cheeses
Here at Good Samaritan Hospital , we believe that every birth is a special one, which is why we have created a birthing center to meet the specialized needs of you and your growing family. As a proud Level III NICU, our highly trained neonatal intensive care and obstetrical teams are available 24 hours a day to handle any type of birth. Our labor and delivery hospital also offers a number of services to help you with your parenting needs . Contact us at (408) 559-2011 for more information or to set up a free tour of our birthing center.