Creating better eating habits is essential during pregnancy.
The great thing about this is your revamped grocery list doesn’t have to be a complicated one – for as long as you stick to superfoods.
What are superfoods?
Superfoods are foods that have high nutritional value and are considered to be good for one’s health.
With a definition that’s as simple as this, you can bet that the ten best superfoods to eat during pregnancy are commonly stocked in most supermarkets.
Here’s what you need to buy more of while you’re expecting!
Rich in fiber, vitamin B6 and protein, oatmeal is a great breakfast that will help maintain your energy level.
This superfood for pregnancy is important in fighting off morning sickness and easing constipation, thanks to its fiber content.
Your baby also benefits from the dose of vitamin B6 and protein, which are essential for his overall development.
And because oatmeal is very filling, you’re more able to resist the urge to snack on starchy, sweet, or high sodium snacks just to ease a hunger pang.
Hands down, salmon wins as a superfood and there’re many reasons why.
Salmon does a lot to help your baby’s developing brain with its DHA, or omega-3 fatty acids.
In fact, salmon is something that you should also consider making a staple for your toddler and beyond because DHA is essential for brain and eye health, which are still developing even outside the womb.
For mom, salmon is a great source of protein to meet your preggo requirements but do try to keep it at 2-3 four ounce serving a week at most to keep mercury exposure to very safe levels.
3. Beans and lentils
Not a fan of meat?
Beans and lentils will meet your superfood for pregnancy needs and fulfill your protein and iron, not to mention that they make great sources of fiber, calcium and folate.
You can also load up on your zinc with these, because a zinc deficiency is linked to a number of pregnancy and delivery problems such as preterm delivery, low birth weight, and birth defects.
4. Leafy greens
An essential superfood for pregnancy, leafy greens are high in folate, which helps lessen chances of birth defects such as neural tube defects.
It is loaded with vitamins like A, B vitamins, C, E, and K. Vitamin K in particular is beneficial helping reduce the possibility of miscarriage during the early weeks of pregnancy, and is also a critical component in the baby’s developing eyes and head.
Meanwhile, vitamin E helps lower the likelihood of pre-eclampsia and preterm birth. The versatility of leafy greens makes it easy to incorporate into your daily means.
Not only can it be a staple side dish to your every meal, it can also be a regular ingredient in your morning power smoothie.
It’s the perfect time to eat eggs daily, because they are also a good source of protein, iron, folate, and choline.
Choline is especially important because like folate, they also help reduce risks of your baby developing spina bifida and other neural tube defects.
To get all the benefits, you need to eat the egg white and the yolk (which is where the choline is).
Reach out for a handful of nuts when you feel like snacking, because this super food is super good for you!
Nuts contain Omega-3, fiber, protein, magnesium, and numerous vitamins and minerals.
This superfood for pregnancy snack helps you lower the risk of premature labor and contributes to your baby’s nervous system development.
Always keep a small packet of nuts in your bag so you have something healthy and satisfying to reach out for when you feel like munching on something when you’re out of the house.
Rich in probiotics and helps you meet your daily calcium needs, three servings of yogurt (to be alternated with milk) is great any time of day.
Want a quick breakfast with this superfood for pregnancy?
Try a cup of yogurt and a banana.
Craving a fun beverage?
Whip up a yogurt-laden fruit smoothie!
Looking for an after-dinner snack?
Yogurt with pan-toasted oatmeal is a fun munchie to end your day.
Pour them into popsicle molds so you have a healthy and cold treat whenever you feel like it!
8. Orange juice
Folate, vitamin C, potassium – these are all the good things you’ll get when you down a glass of fresh OJ in the morning.
The potassium helps you better accommodate your increasing blood volume, and because it loads you up on vitamin C, you are doing a good job in absorbing iron and keeping both your and your baby’s bones and teeth within healthy levels.
Make sure you are getting freshly squeezed OJ, because powdered or juice concentrates are full of sugar that can encourage the development of gestational diabetes.
9. Sweet potatoes
Did you know that sweet potatoes have more potassium than bananas?
This is why they always make to the superfood for pregnancy list. They are also a good source of fiber, beta-carotene, Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, iron, and copper.
Most of these nutrients have been mentioned earlier, but let’s focus on beta-carotene for a moment.
Your body converts this antioxidant into vitamin A, which has a crucial role in baby’s development – particularly the skin, bones, and eyes.
Next, the copper in sweet potato helps your body better absorb the iron you take in from food and supplements, which is always a good thing!
If you find yourself craving for some fast food or some greasy snacks, why not make your way to the kitchen and bake some seasoned sweet potato fries that will definitely hit the spot.
10. Lean protein
If you eat pork and beef, make sure you go for the leaner options as it’s better for you and your baby’s health.
Lean meat helps with your baby’s muscle growth and development and is a good iron source to help combat low birth weight.
Daily servings of lean meat can also help with the formation of momma’s red blood cells, which helps prevent anemia. Lean meat also contains vitamins B6 and B12, too!
Remember to consume these superfoods during your pregnancy
These ten superfoods for supporting your pregnancy are must-haves for ensuring you are in the pink of health during this period.
They make you less susceptive to viruses and bacteria that can harm your developing baby, keep the likelihood of pregnancy problems like preeclampsia and gestational diabetes lower, among others.
At the same time, they contribute to your baby’s development by supplying the necessary nutrients they need while in the womb as well as after birth.
What’s more, it’s easy to create different kinds of meals and dishes with them!
You won’t have to feel like your meals are a drab: a little creativity and simple meal planning makes you look forward to every meal time with the use of these superfoods.