Finding out you are pregnant is a wonderfully terrifying day. Suddenly, your eating habits not only affect you, but the growing child inside of you. With that being said. Have you ever wondered what a dietian recommends for pregnancy? Have you ever thought about getting a nutrition plan for your pregnancy? During this journey your health and wellness should be your number one priority and for that reason, this week I sat down with RDN (registered dietitian nutritionist) Kayley George of Á La Carte services. Kayley and I agreed that this topic is one very much worth sharing. It’s information if not given or shared properly can misguide mamas. So with that being said…
Don’t panic! The À La Carte team is here to help. Here are some questions about what to eat during pregnancy and our science-backed answers mixed with personal experience.
“How much should I eat? How much weight is it okay to gain?”
This is a valid concern. Risk during both pregnancy and delivery is lowest when your weight gain is healthy. However, there is no single answer for this! Your “big picture” goal should be to eat a balanced diet full of variety, and about 2,220 – 2,900 calories daily. Then, your calorie needs grow along with your baby, so add 340 calories a day to your typical diet during the second trimester, and 450 during the third. Important note: extra calories doesn’t mean you should fulfill all those sweet cravings! You need:
• whole grains (brown rice, pasta, cereal, whole wheat bread)
• low fat dairy (milk, yogurt, cheese: avoid unpasteurized)
• fruit (no added sugars)
• veggies (variety of colors)
• healthful fats (avocado, olive oil, nuts, seeds)
• lean protein (up to 12 oz catfish/cod/salmon/sardines per week, up to 6 oz white tuna, meat, poultry, eggs: avoid shark, swordfish, king mackerel, and unheated deli meat)
“Can my diet fix symptoms like morning sickness and heartburn?”
Sadly, we don’t have a “cure” for these problems. However, your diet can absolutely help keep them at bay, so here are some tips to try.
1 Heartburn/indigestion: find your triggers (spicy food, citrus, caffeine) and avoid them, don’t lay down until 3 hours after eating, and eat slowly.
2 Nausea: stay hydrated with water, try eating bland foods, and eat smaller/more frequent meals.
3 Gas, constipation, bloating: eat lots of fiber (fruits, veggies, whole grains), exercise daily, and find your triggers (beans, fried foods, onions).
“Why do I hear so much about avoiding food-borne illness while pregnant?”
You are more susceptible to food-borne illnesses when pregnant, but there are many easy steps to take to avoid getting sick.
• Wash your hands!
• Cook food to the proper temperature – beef/pork/finfish/lamb: 145 degrees, ground meats/casseroles: 160, poultry/any leftovers: 165, heat deli meat until steaming, cook eggs thouroughly
• Avoid cross contamination by keeping cooked foods separated from raw food.
• Make sure your fridge is below 40 degrees, and never thaw meat at room temperature.
“I feel so tired all the time, do I really need to exercise?”
What if we told you that one simple thing could help you:
1 Sleep better
2 Reduce leg and back pain
3 Prepare your body for childbirth
4 Improve balance and posture
5 Prevent varicose veins by promoting blood circulation
6 Look and feel good
Would you do it? Well, exercise is that simple thing. Keep enjoying that team sport through pregnancy, enjoy a quiet and peaceful walk (while you still can), or find a new exercise that you can continue to do after delivery to get back in shape!
If you are struggling to eat well during your pregnancy, À La Carte Nutrition is here to support you. Ask us about our consulting packages and meal plans that can help you stay on track for your 9-month journey. There is never a more important time to focus on nutrition, so contact us today! -K
I hope each and every one of you read through this information and thought it was as important as I did! Below I have linked Kayley’s contact information! Please reach out to her! Also! Make sure to follow Bump to Babies and Á LA CARTE for future collabs!
Kayley George, RDN LD
Founder, À La Carte Nutrition
Mariana Almeida, Birth Doula
Founder, Bump to Babies
Stay tuned for next weeks topic!