It is especially important to follow a healthy diet while you are pregnant. What you eat affects your developing infant and helps to determine how healthy your child will be.
Your baby's prenatal nutritional needs include protein for brain growth, calcium from milk or dairy products for strong bones and teeth, vitamins and fiber found in dark green and orange vegetables and whole fruits. While pregnant, your diet should include whole grains and fish oil to strengthen your baby’s immune system. You get many important vitamins and minerals from taking your prenatal vitamin but these are in addition to eating good food. Your baby needs extra vitamins and minerals in the womb to grow properly and to be strong.
Here are more tips to help you eat right during pregnancy:
- Learn from your midwife how many servings of each food group you need to eat each day
- Avoid foods that are high in sugar and salt
- Avoid foods that are fried
- Don't eat foods with little nutritional value
- Talk to your midwife about foods that aren’t safe for you and should be avoided, such as unpasteurized milk or soft cheeses, certain fish that is high in mercury, raw fish or sushi, or uncooked or undercooked meats.
- Drink plenty of water - at least 8 glasses or 4 bottles per day
Make sure you talk to your WIC counselor about healthy eating if you are on WIC.