Pregnancy Nutrition Advice

  • healthy pregnancy advice for morning sickness

    Pregnancy Diet For Morning Sickness: Ease The Nausea!

    Suffering from morning sickness? Read our tips on what to eat while pregnant that can help ease the nausea

    Nausea and vomiting in pregnancy affects as many as 50% of all women in the early weeks of their pregnancy. Commonly known as morning sickness it generally starts at around six weeks after your last period and continues for around five to six weeks. Whilst some women experience nausea and vomiting for longer the symptoms often disappear completely by the third month of pregnancy.
    The effects can vary from a mild feeling of nausea without actually being sick to the extreme ‘hyperemesis gravidarum’ – severe sickness which can result in dehydration, weight loss and in some cases will require specialist treatment and hospitalisation.

    ‘Morning sickness’ is a bit of a misnomer for many women as the symptoms can come on at different times of the day or night or can even be present constantly.
    It can be a trying problem, especially during the early stages of pregnancy when people around you may not even know you’re pregnant. The early weeks can be surprisingly tiring as your body adjusts to pregnancy and if you’re suffering from morning sickness as well it can have a significant impact on your quality of life – but be reassured that for most women it doesn’t last beyond the first trimester!

    Why do pregnant women suffer from morning sickness?
    The exact cause of nausea and vomiting in pregnancy is unknown – which is little comfort if you need to head for the bathroom the moment you wake up!
    Some sources suggest that the symptoms may be linked to increased levels of oestrogen and possibly low blood sugar levels. A lack of Vitamin B6 in the diet is also thought to be a possible cause of morning sickness.

    healthy pregnancy breakfast with bananas to help with morning sickness symptoms

    Avoiding morning sickness
    A few tips to help you to avoid the symptoms of morning sickness:

    • Get plenty of rest
    • Ginger can help reduce the symptoms – try a cooling lime and ginger sparkler and keep a packet of ginger biscuits handy
    • Make sure you stay hydrated with plenty of water and small sips little and often
    • Avoid foods and smells that you know will make you feel sick
    • Eat small, more frequent meals, nourishing soups or savoury snacks
    • Simple savoury foods such as toast, crackers, baked potatoes or pasta are often better than sweet, rich or spicy foods
    • Boost your Vitamin B intake with foods such as bananas, wholemeal bread and cereal, brown rice, vegetables, soya beans or Brewer’s Yeast
    • Some women find that replacing regular tea with peppermint tea is helpful

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  • folic acid during pregnancy and how to include it in your diet

    Why Do We Need Folic Acid During Pregnancy?

    Concerned about folic acid and why it’s so important to include in your pregnancy diet? Read why it’s vital for your healthy pregnancy and how to eat it here

    folic acid during pregnancy and how to include it in your dietFolic acid is essential to include in your healthy pregnancy diet – make sure you get enough! Folic acid can help to prevent neural tube birth defects such as spina bifida. Ideally you need to start taking 400 micrograms of folic acid whilst you’re trying to conceive – but if you didn’t take a supplement before you became pregnant you should make sure you get enough folic acid during the first 12 weeks of your pregnancy.
    Talk to your GP or midwife about taking a supplement during the early stages of your pregnancy. If there is an increased risk of your baby being affected by a neural tube defect they might recommend a higher dose of folic acid. Reasons for this might be

    • If you or your partner have a neural tube defect – or a family history of spina bifida
    • If you have previously had a baby with a neural tube defect
    • If you have diabetes

    Foods high in folic acid

    It’s important to make sure your pregnancy diet includes plenty of foods that are rich in folate:

    • Dark leafy greens such as spinach, kale and Brussels sprouts.
    • Asparagus is a real winner with the highest folic acid content of any vegetable. Just 5 ounces of asparagus will supply around 60% of your daily recommended dose
    • Broccoli – just steam it lightly to retain the vitamins
    • Fruit, especially oranges and grapefruits. One orange will provide around 50 mcg of folate – papaya have around double this amount!
    • Beans and peas, especially lentils
    • Avocado – which are also a great source of fatty acids and vitamin K
    • Seeds and nuts, including pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower and flax seeds

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  • vitamin b during pregnancy

    Vitamin B: An Essential Prenatal Vitamin

    Want to know how to include Vitamin B in your pregnancy diet? Follow our tips on ensuring these essential prenatal nutrients are included in your meals!

    vitamin b during pregnancy Vitamin B is not just one essential vitamin but a whole group of essential nutrients for a healthy pregnancy diet! They help your body to release energy from food and keep your nervous system, skin and digestive system healthy – they’re also essential for promoting the healthy development of your baby’s nervous system and cell development (especially blood cells).

    Vitamin B1 or Thiamin works with other B-group vitamins to help break down and release energy from food, as well as keeping nerves and muscle tissue healthy. It’s readily available in a wide choice of foods, which is fortunate as your body can’t store it and you need a top of Vitamin B1 every day. Thiamin is found in vegetables, eggs, wholegrain bread, fresh and dried fruit and some fortified cereals.

    Vitamin B2 or Riboflavin helps release energy from carbs and keeps your skin, eyes and nervous system healthy. Found in milk, eggs, rice, mushrooms and fortified breakfast cereals it’s another vitamin that can’t be stored in your body.

    Vitamin B3 or Niacin is important for keeping the nervous and digestives systems healthy as well as helping to produce energy from food. You should be able to get all the niacin you need for your healthy pregnancy diet from meat, fish, flour, eggs, milk and mushrooms.

    Vitamin B6 or Pyridoxine promotes the storage of energy from protein and carbs and also helps form haemoglobin, which carries oxygen around the body. It’s vital for your baby’s developing brain and nervous system. Your daily needs for Vitamin B6 can be found in fish, poultry, pork, eggs, vegetables, milk, potatoes, beans and nuts.
    Research has shown that extra Vitamin B6 can help with morning sickness and pregnancy nausea– although no-one has clarified exactly how it works! Check with your health professional before taking supplements as it’s possible to have too much Vitamin B6 in your pregnancy diet. Anaemia or depression may signal a Vitamin B deficiency.

    Vitamin B12 is essential for healthy cell development in your baby, including the production of red blood cells and her developing nervous system. It also assists in processing folic acid. Useful sources include meat, fish, milk, cheese, eggs and fortified breakfast cereal. It’s not found fruit, vegetables and grains so if you’re following a vegan pregnancy diet you may need to take a Vitamin B12 supplement.

    Folic Acid, known as folate in its natural form is part of the Vitamin B family. Read more about why folic acid is essential for pregnant women here.

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  • what should you eat as part of a fit and healthy pregnancy

    What Should You Eat For A Healthy Pregnancy?

    Want to eat well during pregnancy and nourish your baby with all the prenatal nutrients and vitamins your body needs

    what should you eat as part of a fit and healthy pregnancy Your healthy, nutritious pregnancy diet doesn’t just benefit you….it benefits your baby too.
    Eating a well-balanced diet during pregnancy can improve your overall health, reducing the effect of some of the less pleasant side-effects you might be experiencing (nausea, fatigue and constipation for instance) as well as minimizing the risk of some of the more serious complications (such as pre-eclampsia) that have been linked to dietary deficiencies during pregnancy. Managing a healthy pregnancy weight gain is better for both of you whilst piling on too many pregnancy pounds can cause serious health problems.
    Eating for two doesn’t mean eating twice as much – you don’t actually need extra calories during pregnancy until the third trimester and even then, your need for extra calories only increases by around 200-300 calories a day. But nevertheless, your well-balanced pregnancy diet should provide all the nutrients necessary to grow a strong, healthy baby.

    Your daily pregnancy diet should include:

    • Protein is essential for your baby’s growth– ideally you should include two-three servings of meat, fish, cheese or eggs, or vegetable proteins such as nuts, beans, lentils, quinoa or tofu every day
    • Carbohydrates act as fuel for your body and should be on the menu at every meal. Aim for complex, unrefined carbs which are richer in nutrients and provide a sustained source of energy to keep your blood-sugar levels stable. Carbs can be found in cereal, breads, rice and pasta as well oats, rye, spelt, barley corn, quinoa, yams, buckwheat and sweet potatoes
    • At least five to six portions of fruit and vegetables – go for the ‘rainbow’ with fruit and veg of many colours. Try for a good spread of dark green, leafy vegetables, root vegetables and plenty of fruit. Fresh is best but don’t dismiss frozen, canned or dried fruit and veg… or whizz up a delicious, vitamin packed smoothie.
    • Include calcium rich foods, important for healthy teeth and bones and for baby’s heart, nerve and muscle development. Skipping calcium will mean your baby will help herself to yours, which could put you at risk of osteoporosis later in life. Dairy products such as cheese, milk, yogurt and fromage frais are the obvious choice but don’t forget, calcium can be found in green leafy vegetables, small fish with bones (such as sardines), tofu, beans, nuts and seed· About 400 micrograms a day of folic acid is generally recommended when you are trying to conceive and during the first trimester to help prevent neural defects such as spina bifida. Folic acid is found in greens, potatoes, chickpeas, wholegrains, sweetcorn, broccoli, fortified cereals and soya milk – aim for two servings a day.
    • Two portions of oily fish each week will help promote your baby’s healthy brain development
    • Stay hydrated– we would recommend six to eight medium glasses of filtered or mineral water, especially when exercising or if the weather is hot. Whilst sports drinks can give you an instant lift after your pregnancy workout they tend to be high in calories and can contribute to weight gain. Tests have shown that milk will give you more benefit than a manufactured sparkling drink.
    • Fibre is important to keep everything moving through your system and avoid constipation and the dreaded pregnancy piles. Eat plenty of fruit and veg, wholemeal bread, brown rice and pasta – but make sure you stay hydrated as too much fibre and not enough fluids can exacerbate constipation.

    Let’s talk pregnancy vitamins!

    Your healthy pregnancy diet is critical to the health of your baby for many years to come – growing a new person requires plenty of prenatal vitamins and minerals.

    Vitamin D keeps your bones and teeth healthy – and helps your baby to develop strong bones too. Our bodies make Vitamin D naturally from sunlight and it’s only found in a few foods, including fortified margarines and breakfast cereal. Exercise outside for half an hour and let the sun do its work!

    Vitamin C helps your body absorb iron, fight infection and promotes healthy bones, joints and skin, encouraging a healthy immune system too. Good sources include citrus fruits, blackcurrants, strawberries and kiwi fruits as well as green leafy veggies, tomatoes and peppers.

    Vitamin B12 is needed for making new cells (especially blood cells) and building the nervous system. You’ll find it in meat, fish, eggs, milk, soya and in some fortified breakfast cereals but it’s not abundant in fruit and veggies. Vegetarians and vegans might need a supplement.

    Iron is essential to help your red blood cells transport oxygen around your body and deliver it to your baby. It’s also needed for bones and connective tissues, cartilage and ligaments. The iron found in meats, eggs, poultry and fish is easily absorbed and there’s iron present in leafy green veg, dried fruits and nuts it’s harder for your body to absorb it from these sources. Iron absorption can be improved by including a source of vitamin C with your meal – go for a glass orange juice with your meal!

    And include a regular intake of healthy fats

    ‘Good’ fats are essential for the development of your baby’s brain and nervous system: read more about which are the good fats and which are the bad fats here:
    And one last word… avoid alcohol – it’s not a healthy option. The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists suggests that one or two units once a week won’t harm your baby – but giving up altogether is better for both of you. Behaviour problems, learning disabilities and hyperactivity have all been linked to drinking in pregnancy – as well as low birth weight and foetal alcohol syndrome.

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  • stay hydrated during pregnancy exercise

    Staying Hydrated For Pregnancy Well-Being!

    We are told to drink a lot of water during pregnancy, but do you know why? Read on for the benefits to your healthy pregnancy diet and hydration tips!

    Okay – most of us know that we should drink plenty of water, especially during exercise or when the weather is warmer. But it’s even more important to stay hydrated during pregnant, remember, you’re drinking for two!

    reasons to drink water and stay hydrated during pregnancy

    Check out our 12 reasons to drink plenty of water during pregnancy

    • Common symptoms of dehydration are headaches, nausea and dizziness. Sound familiar? There’s a fair chance you might suffer from one or more of these symptoms simply because you’re pregnant – don’t exacerbate the risk by not drinking enough water during pregnancy.
    • You have up to 50% more blood circulating in your body during pregnancy – and your baby is nestling in up to 2 pints of amniotic fluid. It stands to reason that you need to ensure your body has plenty of fluid to maintain and replenish these levels.
    • Cool pure water is much better for your teeth than sweet, sugary drinks. The old wives tale that you should expect to lose a tooth for every baby is, fundamentally, an old wives tale…. but nevertheless, some studies have shown a link between pregnancy and dental problems. Drinking plenty of water whilst pregnant is much better for your oral hygiene.
    • Avoid constipation! Drinking plenty of water during pregnancy helps to keep things moving through your system and makes you less prone to constipation and those dreaded pregnancy piles.
    • Keep cool. Your core body temperature often rises during pregnancy, drinking plenty of water helps to stop you overheating.
    • Drinking water rehydrates our tissues and will help you to maintain your beautiful pregnancy complexion.
    • Urinary infections can be common during pregnancy – drinking plenty of water dilutes the urine and reduces the risk of infection
    • Small sips of water at regular intervals can help relieve the symptoms of pregnancy heartburn, morning sickness and indigestion
    • Water helps your body to absorb essential nutrients from food, speeding up the rate of glucose absorption and increasing your energy levels. A glass of water can give you a boost if you’re overcome by pregnancy tiredness
    • Dehydration can be serious for pregnant women and in extreme cases can result in premature labour – keep that bottle of water handy Mammas and stay hydrated!
    • Eating juicy fruits and vegetable such as watermelon and cucumber will add to your fluid intake
    • Water is a key component of breast milk. Don’t discard your water bottle after baby is born, especially if you’re breastfeeding.

    The World Health Organisation recommends drinking between 1.5 and 2 litres of water daily – you should aim to increase this during pregnancy to up to 3 litres a day. Check the colour of your pee – it should be clear, colourless or a very pale yellow. Dark yellow urine is a strong indicator that you’re not drinking enough – grab a glass of water!
    Filtered water is best but don’t feel you need to buy bottled water.

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  • good and bats fats in pregnancy to manage healthy pregnancy weight gain

    Good Fats And Bad Fats In Your Pregnancy Diet

    Concerned about what fats to include in a healthy pregnancy diet? Read our guide here to see what you need to eat when pregnant and how to enjoy them!

    good and bats fats in pregnancy to manage healthy pregnancy weight gainThe essential fatty acids, omega-3 and omega-6 are necessary for your baby’s healthy development and brain function – and you need fats to absorb and transport fat soluble prenatal vitamins such as A, D, E and K. Fat is fuel for your body, provides energy and helps you to feel full – eating low-fat or reduced-fat foods can be counter-productive as they leave you feeling unsatisfied.

    What fats should you eat when pregnant?

    Include some saturated fats in your pregnancy diet. These are found in meat, dairy products such as milk, cheese, yogurt and butter and tropical oils such as palm oil and coconut oil. Whilst some sources suggest you should avoid saturated fats when pregnant they are a good source of energy, helping your bones to absorb calcium and have an important role in the structure and function of cell membranes.

    Unsaturated fats are essential for a healthy pregnancy

    Both monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats are necessary for your baby’s growth, contributing to the healthy development of brain, eyes and nervous system.

    What foods contain monounsaturated fats?

    These are the fats typical in a Mediterranean diet, especially olive oil and avocados as well as nuts and seeds. When you’re planning healthy pregnancy meals and healthy snacks feel good about aubergine dip; baked peppers and tomatoes cooked with olive oil and fresh green salads with avocado and an olive oil salad dressing

    What foods contain polyunsaturated fats?

    You’ll find polyunsaturated fats in sunflower oil, corn oil, nuts and seeds. Polyunsaturated fats also include Omega-3 and Omega-6 essential fatty acids which are vital for healthy brain function. If you’re suffering from ‘baby brain’ and have become more forgetful in pregnancy omega-3 will be good for you – as well as promoting healthy brain development for your baby!

    So where do I find omega-3?

    The main sources are oily fish, such as sardines, anchovies, mackerel, salmon and fresh tuna. (although you should avoid too much fresh tuna during pregnancy as it can include high levels of mercury). Walnuts, pumpkin seeds, flaxseeds and dark green leafy vegetable also have high levels of omega-3.

    What fats should you avoid during pregnancy?

    Steer clear of hydrogenated fats or ‘trans fats’ which were created when scientists succeeded in hydrogenating liquid oils to make them more stable and provide a better shelf life. You’ll find them in commercially produced foods such as cakes and biscuits, packaged snacks and margarines – avoid anything with the word ‘hydrogenated’ on the label.

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  • tips for maintaining a special diet during pregnancy including vegetarian, vegan, gluten or dairy free and more

    Advice For Maintaining A Special Diet During Pregnancy

    On a special diet through your pregnancy? You can still include all your prenatal vitamins… Read on for our restricted diet healthy pregnancy tips!

    If your pregnancy diet is limited for religious, ethical or health tips for maintaining a special diet during pregnancy including vegetarian, vegan, gluten or dairy free and morereasons it’s important to make sure you don’t miss out on any ‘must have’ prenatal nutrients and vitamins. Make sure you know what to eat during pregnancy to meet all the nutritional requirements for you and your baby.

    Vegetarians and vegan diets:

    A well-balanced vegetarian or vegan diet during pregnancy is totally achievable, with a little extra attention to make sure all those essential pregnancy nutrients are included in your diet:

    • Your body needs around 13% extra protein during pregnancy, however it’s a myth that good quality protein can only be found in animal sources. Simply ensure you have 3 servings a day of quinoa, soya, fish (if eaten), beans and lentils. Seed foods (such as runner beans peas, corn or broccoli), nuts and seeds are also a useful source of protein.
    • B vitamins are found in green leafy veg, wheatgerm, brewer’s yeast, wholegrains, beansprouts, bananas, avocados, nuts and mushroom but vegans should consider a B12 supplement.
    • Zinc– found in wholegrains, lentils and chick peas, brown rice, nuts, seeds and cheddar cheese
    • Iron– there’s plenty in beans & pulses, leafy green veg, wholegrains, dried fruit, tomato paste, soya flour, wild rice. Including additional Vitamin C with your meal (such as a glass of orange juice) will increase absorption.
    • Vegans need to make sure they get essential calcium from green leafy vegetables, tofu, beans and pulses, molasses, nuts, seeds and figs
    • Vitamin D is mostly found in meat, dairy and eggs and sunshine. Whilst a little bit is present in some wholegrains it’s probably a good idea for vegans to consider a Vitamin D supplement

    Gluten free:

    Gluten is a protein found in certain grains. You may be following a gluten-free diet due to an allergy such a celiac disease or because of a food intolerance and if this is the case you will already be avoiding wheat, spelt, oats, rye and barley and choosing gluten free bread. You should also avoid many processed or convenience foods, which often also wheat amongst their ingredients.

    Our ‘healthy pregnancy eating guidelines’ still apply if you are avoiding gluten – just leave out all the gluten-containing grains mentioned. Eat four or more portions of wholegrains such as rice, millet, gluten-free oats, corn, quinoa, amaranth and buckwheat each day in the form of cereal, breads, pasta or savoury biscuits. And why not try our delicious gluten and dairy free carrot cake!

    Wheat intolerant:

    Wheat contains the highest amount of gluten out of all the gluten-containing grains and some women choose to eliminate it from their diet during pregnancy for health reasons.
    Avoid all wheat-based cereal, bread, pasta and savoury crackers or biscuits, choosing other options instead such as rice, millet, gluten-free oats, corn, quinoa and 100% rye bread.

    If you have a serious problem with eating wheat, you’ll need to carefully check the labels of all processed or convenience foods as many of them include wheat.

    Dairy Free
    The most common reason for following a dairy free diet is lactose intolerance, meaning you lack the enzyme (lactase) which breaks down the sugar found in milk (lactose) or because of an allergy to milk protein.

    You do need to ensure you get adequate amounts of calcium, but whilst dairy products are a great source of calcium – they’re definitely not the ONLY source.

    Try and include at least 3 servings each day of calcium rich foods such as green leafy veggies, small fish with bones (such as sardines), tofu, beans, nuts and seeds. Almonds and pumpkin seeds are both a great source of calcium. The amount of calcium you need when you’re pregnant (around 1200mg per day) can be difficult to get from diet alone so maybe consider a supplement – most pregnancy multivitamin and mineral products will contain some calcium.

    Avoid all products that are likely to contain dairy products such as quiche, lasagne, batter made with milk, biscuits and cakes, tinned or packet soups – and look out for cereals that contain dried milk too.

    Staying healthy during pregnancy is so important for both of you! Eating foods that are as close as possible to their natural state, organic or free-range are best for you and for your baby.

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  • foods to avoid during pregnancy

    Tips On Which Foods Pregnant Women Should Avoid

    Concerned about what NOT to eat while pregnant? Read on for our tips on foods to avoid during pregnancy

    Fresh fruit and veggies are full of important prenatal vitamins and positive nutrients – but wash them carefully to remove any traces of chemicals and bacteria. Even organic and home-grown vegetables should be washed to get rid of any soil, which can contain a parasite known as ‘toxoplasma gondii’ which can cause ‘toxoplasmosis’, a serious condition which can lead to miscarriage and health problems for your baby.

    Soft, unpasteurised cheeses, such as goat’s cheese, brie, camembert, feta and blue cheeses can contain listeria – harmful bacteria that causes listeriosis which can result in miscarriage. Unpasteurised milk should also be avoided.

    Hard cheeses such as cheddar or processed cheeses are all fine to eat and a good source of calcium.

    Pâté is another potential source of listeria so it’s best to avoid all commercially produced pate. So why not make your own? Check out our Mushroom Pate recipe! It’s simple, quick and full of prenatal vitamins including zinc.

    Raw or partially cooked eggs can contain salmonella, which causes a type of food poisoning. Whilst it’s unlikely to directly harm your baby it can make you ill –which is not a good outcome. Only eat eggs that have been thoroughly cooked and avoid foods that may contain raw or partially-cooked eggs – such as homemade mayonnaise, mousse or ice creams. Most shop-bought mayonnaise and ice-creams contain pasteurised egg, which is fine.

    Raw or undercooked meat or fish– Salmonella can also be found in undercooked meats and poultry and food that has been left uncovered in a warm environment.

    foods to avoid during pregnancy

    Some types of fish can contain mercury, which at high levels might affect the development of your baby’s nervous system. Avoid shark, swordfish and marlin, and limit your intake of tuna to minimise the toxicity risk – although all other types of fish, especially oily fish, are full of essential nutrients and omega oils so should be part of your regular weekly diet.

    Raw shellfish and seafood should be avoided as they can contain bacteria called ‘vibro vulnificus’ -which is not good! No more oysters or fresh sushi! However, smoking, freezing, salting or pickling will destroy the bacteria and well-cooked shellfish is fine to eat.

    Alcohol Heavy drinking during pregnancy can harm your baby and there’s evidence that it’s associated with birth defects and lower birth weight. Behaviour problems, learning disabilities and hyperactivity have all been linked to drinking in pregnancy – as well as low birth weight and foetal alcohol syndrome.

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  • include iron in your healthy pregnancy diet

    The Importance Of Iron For Pregnancy Health

    Why is iron important to include in your pregnancy diet? Read why iron is essential for your healthy pregnancy and what iron-rich foods you need to eat

    Iron is an essential part of any diet (and especially your pregnancy diet!). Your body needs iron to make haemoglobin, the protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen around your body. It’s also an important component of myoglobin (a protein that helps supply oxygen to your muscles) collagen (which is important for healthy bones and cartilage) and it helps maintain your healthy immune system.

    Iron is even more essential for healthy pregnancy nutrition and for breast feeding mums. During pregnancy the amount of blood in your body increases by almost 50% so your need for iron goes up accordingly. You also need extra iron to meet the needs of your developing baby and placenta, especially in the second and third trimesters.
    Insufficient iron is likely to make you feel more tired, less energetic, short of breath and irritable. If low iron levels continue you might start experiencing headaches and suffer from a lowered immune resistance. Iron deficiency anaemia is the most common type of anaemia in pregnancy and has an increased risk of premature birth, low birth weight and reduced foetal organ growth.

    include iron in your healthy pregnancy diet

    What are the best sources of iron for pregnant women?

    There are two forms of iron: haem-iron which is only found in animal products (especially red meat) and is easier for your body to absorb and non-haem iron which is found in plant foods such as green leafy vegetables, wholegrain bread, beans and lentils as well meat, poultry and fish.
    Beef, turkey (especially the dark meat on the legs), chicken and fish are good sources of iron as part of your pregnancy diet. Although liver is a good source of iron, it should be avoided during pregnancy as it contains excessive amounts of Vitamin A.
    Vegetarians should ensure their diet includes plenty of raisins, apricots, prunes and nuts as well as dark green leafy veggies such as watercress, spinach or kale.
    Vitamin C can help you to absorb iron more easily, especially from plant foods so team your iron-rich meal with cabbage, broccoli or roast peppers and tomatoes, enjoy a glass of fresh orange juice with your meal or serve fresh fruit as a dessert for maximum benefit.
    Caffeine can make it harder for the body to absorb iron, so avoid tea and coffee at meal times.

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  • zinc inspiration for pregnancy diet

    Healthy Pregnancy Diet: Zap Up Your Zinc Intake

    What is zinc and why is important to include in your pregnancy diet? Read why zinc is essential for a healthy pregnancy and what you should eat while pregnant

    zinc inspiration for pregnancy diet Your body needs zinc for the production, repair, and functioning of DNA – the body’s genetic blueprint and a basic building block of cells. Zinc should always be an important part of your healthy pregnancy diet to cope with your babies’ rapid cell growth. And it’s essential to help support your immune system and heal wounds.

    Food sources of zinc

    Fortified cereals and red meat are good sources of zinc – and you can get it from shellfish, poultry, beans, nuts, whole grains, and dairy products. One of the best sources of zinc is oysters – just one of these will give you a whole day’s supply but sadly oysters are high on the list of foods to avoid during pregnancy – they come into the ‘raw fish’ and ‘potential toxins’ category!
    Other sources are fortified breakfast cereals, tofu, chickpeas and lentils, seeds and cheddar cheese.

    Should you take a zinc supplement?

    Most people who eat meat get plenty of zinc from a reasonably well-balanced diet. But since it’s harder to absorb the mineral from plant foods, you may have a hard time getting enough zinc from food alone if you eat a mostly vegetarian diet so make sure you eat plenty of whole grains.

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