As soon as you find out you are expecting, you will likely have
many questions about pregnancy nutrition. In particular, you
may wonder what foods are safe to eat for the next nine months,
and which foods should be eliminated from your diet completely,
or at the very least, consumed in limited quantities.
You may wonder if the guidelines you hear are old wives’ tales,
or if there is some truth to them. In this article, we
highlight four of the most common foods you will need to cut
back on during pregnancy, and explain why trimming them from
your diet is beneficial to both you and your baby.
Caffeine should be cut significantly from your eating plan, if
not eliminated completely, for four crucial reasons. First, it
stimulates your central nervous system. It also leaches
calcium—badly needed during pregnancy for both mother and
child—from your body.
Caffeine also acts as a diuretic, and if you are in danger of
dehydration, especially from morning sickness, drinking too
much caffeine can aggravate it. Finally, it crosses the
placenta and affects your baby.
Most experts recommend limiting your consumption of caffeine to
150mg daily when pregnant. This is the equivalent of one cup of
coffee or two cups of black tea. However, it is not recommended
that you severely limit or even go off caffeine cold turkey.
Stepping down your consumption slowly, over time, will help
minimize the effects of detoxing on your body, which can be
quite difficult to handle when pregnant.
Both sugar and artificial sweeteners should be cut from your
diet during pregnancy. Artificial sweeteners such as aspartame,
sucralose, and saccharin contain potent and questionable
chemicals that could cause lasting harm to both your health and
the health of your baby.
Sugar can contribute to a host of pregnancy issues, but the
most troubling is the rapid release of insulin in your body.
This can cause your pancreas to fall short of doing its job,
leading you to have increased blood sugar levels in your body.
Even if you don’t develop gestational diabetes, high blood
sugar will contribute to excessive weight gain, birth
complications, and the development of a large fetus, which can
make labor very difficult.
If you need to satisfy your sweet tooth, it’s wise to make the
switch to all-natural sweeteners which do not contain troubling
chemicals and also do not pack the caloric punch of sugar.
Agave syrup, raw honey (used in moderation, since it does
contain calories), xylitol, and stevia are all excellent
alternatives to raw sugar and artificial sweeteners.
Processed foods contain fillers, sodium, and preservatives, all
of which can aggravate issues of weight gain, hunger,
oscillating blood sugar levels, and water retention.
Consumption of processed foods should be limited during
pregnancy. In lieu of these types of foods, switching to whole,
organic, and all-natural foods such as chicken, beef, eggs, and
vegetables, should be your goal.
“Can I eat shrimp while pregnant?” you may be wondering. The
answer is yes. Not all seafood is allowed throughout pregnancy,
however. The varieties of seafood that are highest in mercury
include shark, swordfish, tile, orange roughy, grouper, marlin,
tilefish, and king mackerel. These should be completely
eliminated from your diet while you are pregnant.
However, varieties that are low in mercury, such as shrimp,
wild salmon, butterfish, tilapia, crab, catfish, shad, sole,
crayfish, lobster, hake, herring, sardines, anchovies, Pollock,
caviar, and calamari, may be enjoyed on a limited basis during
the next nine months. Limit your portions to no more than two
six-ounce servings per week and you should be fine.
Are you looking for the best advice for pregnancy nutrition?
Need advice which foods to avoid while pregnant? Visit
http://whattoeatwhilepregnant.com/ for exercise
recommendations and eating tips for a healthy pregnancy.