A well-balanced, nutritious diet is all you need for a developing baby. Adopting to a healthy eating plan is essential before, during and after pregnancy for a healthy child. It is almost like eating-for-two. But choosing right food will ensure good health of a mother and child. Eating certain foods can affect the normal development of the child and may have dire consequences.
I would like to put some light on such foods, some foods to be completely stopped and some to be avoided.
- Caffeine, moderate consumption of tea or coffee is not associated with any major issues but caffeine makes you dehydrated so having enough water becomes imperative. 200-300 mg of caffeine is the limit one can safely consume which is not more than 2 cups a day.
- Limit the saturated fat content. Just because you have another dependent to feed does not allow you to go higher on unhealthy fat which may pose a problem later.
- Fish is very good source of omega -3 fatty acids and proteins but it may also be high in mercury which may hamper the brain development of a child. White Tuna, swordfish, shark, mackerel has high level of methyl mercury which can pass placenta and affect child’s nervous system.
- Unpasteurized food can be a good source of bacteria Listeria leading to listeriosis and is known to cause stillbirth, preterm labor, miscarriage. Raw milk, raw meat, salads, uncooked eggs, uncooked sprouts, soft cheese like feta can all lead to toxoplasmosis.
- Alcohol to be strictly stopped as it is highly associated with birth defects, pre-mature babies, miscarriages, low birth weight babies, defects in baby. Alcohol can pass to the baby as cause serious illness.
There are many myths about foods to be eaten and avoided during pregnancy. The above listed foods are studies and proved to be avoided as much as possible.
What a woman eats and drinks is a major source of baby’s nourishment so make it right!!