Here are a few things to remind yourself of this season, to continue to best nourish your body, and that of your growing baby.
What Eating For Two Really Means
Some see pregnancy as a license to eat whatever they want; there is that old myth out there that you can give yourself permission to eat for two. You ARE eating for two but not in the sense that you can eat DOUBLE the calories. You are eating for your growing baby; this means that what you eat provides the nourishment for her developing body. A second slice of pumpkin pie, although tasty, is not essential for her growth. So remind yourself, now and always, that everything you put into your body, at this precious time, needs to count.
What a Healthy Weight Gain Is
You should expect to gain between 30 and 35 pounds during your pregnancy (this is an average number). Too much weight can increase your risk of pregnancy complications, like gestational diabetes, pre-eclampsia, and water retention. To keep the numbers on the scale under control, avoid foods high in fat like red meat and cheese (opt for good fats in moderation, like flax seeds, nuts and oily fish). At the holiday buffet, reach for dark meat turkey instead.
How Much You Really Need to Eat
There’s actually no need to eat any more than you did pre-pregnancy, until you’re closer to your third trimester when an increase of 200 calories a day is needed. You may find, however, that your appetite has increased in your first and second trimester. Use this as an opportunity to fuel your body with fruits, vegetables and plenty of water. Aim for 5 pieces of colourful fruit each day, 2 green vegetables and 2 other colourful vegetables. Nuts and seeds can be a great snack to fill you up; try eating a handful of almonds before you head out to a party to keep your desire to snack under control.
This information has been adapted from the book Sprout Right: Nutrition from Tummy to Toddler by Lianne Phillipson-Webb.
Lianne Phillipson-Webb is the founder of Sprout Right, a company that specializes in pre-conception, prenatal, and postnatal nutrition for women, as well as good food and health for the whole family. With over ten years of experience, Lianne is a registered nutritionist, author, member of the International Organization of Nutrition Consultants, and mother of two.
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