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What to Eat During Pregnancy

pregnant mom holding baby shoes on bellyFor many moms-to-be, the familiar saying, “I’m eating for two” has meant a license to cave to cravings. While an occasional piece of dark chocolate is okay, a daily slice of chocolate cake isn’t. “Be mindful of cravings and don’t use it as an excuse just because you’re pregnant,” said Dr. Carly.

Craving chips? If yes, you might just have a hankering for a crunchy sensation versus the chips. Dr. Carly recommends satisfying that crunch craving with healthier options, such as almonds or carrots.

If you’re wondering what you should eat throughout pregnancy, Dr. Carly offers these recommendations:

First Trimester: Colorful Foods

From dark leafy greens to deeply colored berries to brightly hued sweet potatoes, we recommend eating a variety of foods, and particularly ones in the colors of the rainbow during the first trimester.

Second Trimester: Plenty of Protein

Once you transition into the second trimester, focus on rich sources of protein such as salmon and chicken. If you have anemia, red meat such as sirloin steak, lean hamburger or roast beef can provide your body with the most iron.

Don’t forget those veggies. It’s still important to eat various vitamin-rich ones, including broccoli and Brussels sprouts.

During this trimester, you should also add Brazil nuts to your diet. These are an excellent source of selenium, but you should only eat 2-3 a day, as too many can have adverse effects on your health.

Third Trimester: Up Those Omegas

During this last trimester, focus on foods rich in omega-3s and DHA fatty acids. Salmon and anchovies are excellent choices.

Quelling ‘Morning Sickness’

During the first trimester, many women have bouts of nausea or vomiting and find it difficult to keep food down. Dr. Carly recommends eating black beans and rice, as they help the stomach feel full.

If your blood sugar is too low, it can cause the sensation of nausea. If you wake up in the middle of the night feeling queasy, have a quick snack, such as a piece of toast with butter or peanut butter. Another option is a premade natural juice smoothie. Keeping crackers on the side of the bed is also a good idea, as eating these can quickly alleviate nausea.

Supplement Smart

As it’s difficult to get all the nutrients you need in foods alone, Dr. Carly recommends a whole food prenatal vitamin. In addition, she encourages pregnant women to also take vitamin D, DHAs and omega-3s. Magnesium is also helpful, as it can alleviate leg cramps.

Please see our full list of recommended foods to eat during pregnancy.

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