Pregnancy nutrition is no different than the foundation for a good balanced diet for anyone. Lean sources of protein, whole grain foods, and plenty of vegetables and fruits should be a part of a pregnant woman’s diet. There are a few nutrients that will help a pregnant woman and her developing baby so it’s important to make sure they get enough in their diet every day.

Proteins are needed for pregnancy nutrition basics. Proteins will repair your cells during all the changes your body will go through. Making sure you get lean meats like chicken will help you to not over do it on your caloric intake while getting the protein a pregnant woman needs. Protein plays an important part in the growth of the baby. It’s more important in the later months of pregnancy when the baby will really be growing fast. 71 grams a day should be enough and you can find almost 30 grams in one 3 oz chicken breast. Cottage cheese is another good source along with fish, milk, peanut butter, eggs and beans.

Iron is good for your blood while you are pregnant. A good pregnancy nutrition plan will include plenty of iron through cereals that have been fortified, beans, red meat, poultry and even spinach. If you find yourself with an odd craving for spinach it is a sign that your body needs more iron. Iron helps fight fatigue and infections, so make sure you are getting enough. The recommended daily intake is 27 milligrams and you can get 18 of those in one bowl of cereal if it is fortified. Iron is easier to absorb when it comes from meat but you can help iron from other foods absorb easier if you get eat foods with lots of vitamin C in it.

Calcium is also something you shouldn’t forget about in your pregnancy nutrition diet. 1,000 milligrams of calcium everyday will help both you and the baby have strong bones and teeth. If you don’t get enough calcium while you are pregnant, your body will take it from your bones to give it to the baby. Include plenty of dairy products along with salmon, spinach and cereal that is fortified. You can even get fruit juices now that have added calcium.

Folate is something no pregnant woman should go without. It helps prevent spinal and brain defects in the baby. 1 milligram a day is all you need but there are only traces of folate found in the foods you will eat for your pregnancy nutrition. A fortified cereal will have folic acid, the synthetic form of folate, and it’s the best way to get it with the foods you eat. You can also find folate naturally in organ meats, leafy green vegetables, and in beans.

Pregnancy nutrition is hard to maintain when a woman may not feel like eating regular. This can be taken care of with a good prenatal vitamin but it’s always best to try to get the nutrients you need during pregnancy through foods as well. The prenatal vitamin is not a substitute for eating right, it will just guarantee that you get enough of the nutrients you need to grow a healthy baby.

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