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Perfect Indian diet plan for pregnancy
A new mother is surrounded by people advising her on healthy eating during pregnancy. Even those who have not experienced pregnancy advise about ideal diet plan for expectant woman.
First of all educate yourself which nutrients are most important during pregnancy for healthy development of your baby. e.g. Folic Acid, Protiens and Iron are most important nutrient for a pregnant woman. Know more about Nutrients During Pregnancy here
Super Healthy Foods to Eat During Pregnancy
Below foods are selected based on common nutrients needs of Indian Pregnant women.
1. Soaked Almonds: Soak almonds overnight and eat the first thing in morning.
2. Beet Roots: For healthy levels of hemoglobins
3. Moringa Leaves: Super nutritious for Pregnant women.
4. Figs / Dates / Walnuts
5. Milk/ Yogurt
6. Millets like Ragi / Bajara / Jowar
7. Seeds: Chia Seeds and Makhana (Lotus Seeds)
Read more about healthy foods during pregnancy here Also Calcium Rich Fruits
What Not to Eat During Pregnancy
1. Fish high in Mercury
: Read more about fish during pregnancy here
2. Uncooked Eggs
3. Heavy to digest foods (raw sprouts etc) / Junk Foods / Foods having MSG / Canned foods / Aerated Drinks
4. Unpasteurized Dairy Products
Now after getting loads of advice on dos and don’ts of pregnancy diet you must be wondering exactly when and how much you should be eating. Right? Find out what a day of healthy eating during your pregnancy should look like.
Below are a few recommended healthy food choices and good times to have them specially for Indian pregnant women.
Typical Healthy Diet Plan During Pregnancy
Breakfast at around 8 am:
Drink: 1 cup of milk and optional 1 cup of fruit juice
Must: 3-5 almonds soaked overnight,
Any 1 to 2 servings out of below 3 types
Western menu:: 2 slices of whole wheat bread with butter or as a sandwich, oatmeal with dry fruits and/or fresh fruits, corn flakes with dry fruits and/or fresh fruits, healthy salads like: boiled sweetcorn with red bell pepper and lightly cooked broccoli, baked potato.
Indian Menu: Lightly cooked sprouted moong beans, poha, veg upma, whole wheat sheera with dry fruits, whole wheat sevaiyan, veg vermicelli upma, veg stuffed paratha, idali-sambhar, dosa-sambhar, moong dal dhokla, raggi porridge, thalipith of multigrain atta and vegetables, mixed dal and vegetable daliya.
Non veg: Boiled egg/omlet(Important note: make sure eggs are thoroughly cooked)
Light snack at around 10 am:
Coconut water, low fat cottage cheese, oatmeal cookies, healthy laddoo(e.g. dryfruits coconut), banana, figs or any fruit, lassi, fruit lassi, veg soup
Lunch at around 12-1pm:
Veg soup, salad, one bowl curd, dal, rice, sabzi/curry, chapatti. (Leafy green vegetable is a must)
Light snack At around 4pm
Dinner at around 7-8pm:
Easy to digest salad, dal, rice, chapatti, vegetable subzi/curry
Before sleeping at around 10pm: 1 cup of Milk with date syrup/protein powder
1. As a pregnant woman you need no extra calories during first trimester, about 350 extra a day in 2nd trimester, about 450 extra calories a day in 3rd trimester. You should not overload yourself with fat rich food.
2. It’s very beneficial to have vegetables and grains (like wheat or rice) in your breakfast too. A healthy start of day for a fetus is as important as for any grown up child.
3. Consume these food items daily: 2-3 walnuts, almonds soaked in water over night, banana/fig, spinach/fenugreek, raggi, sprouted beans sp. Moong
4. Ghee has DHA, its good for your baby but remember to limit daily intake.
5. If you are a non-vegetarian then include these items (well cooked) in your diet regularly: Eggs (one daily), omega 3 fatty acid rich fish like Salmon/Rawas/Rohu , Chicken liver, Mutton liver.
6. Replace sugar with jaggery wherever possible.
7. Consume less of this: tea/coffee, spices, chilly, junk food, deep fried foods
8. Replace spicy pickles and spicy chutneys with healthy chutneys (with nearly no chilly) like coconut + garlic , sesame + garlic, Kaarale/Khurasani (thistle seeds ), Jawas (Flax seed) garlic-onion chutney
9. In case you have morning sickness or nausea then have these: Lemon, ginger, herbal tea (peppermint tea), fennel seeds, Amla
Why breakfast is important for Pregnant Women?
1. Your baby is growing rapidly and constantly inside you, the development is going on 24 hrs a day. When you wake up in the morning you need to refuel and replenish your body, and recover the long break of a night.
2 . The breakfast is the most important source of all nutrients and the energy. Whatever you eat first is going to be absorbed very effectively. So select the most healthy item of the day as your first food e.g. almonds soaked in water overnight.
3. Having breakfast actually helps you to prevent and reduce morning sickness. Even if you don’t feel like eating in case of nausea, eating something healthy is a must.
4. With healthy and timely breakfast you get: steady and normal body sugar level, heart health for you and your baby, and help in prevention of excess body weight.
Having food at the right time is as important as having balanced, nutritious food. Make a suitable diet plan for yourself and stick to it. Having a variety of vegetables and fruits can cover your nutritional need better. you should always consult your doctor before making drastic changes in your diet during pregnancy. Also you might have or develop allergy for certain foods during pregnancy for which you want to be careful. Enjoy your pregnancy days with healthy foods!