Eating healthy is important during pregnancy, so if your diet is not ideal, now is your chance to fix that. After all, you need certain nutrients in order to help your baby develop properly. For instance, according to the American Pregnancy Association, folic acid can prevent neural tube defects like spina bifida, while iron is essential for getting oxygen to your baby and your muscles. Vitamin C is important for protecting the cells in the body and improving the immune system, and calcium is critical for bone health—yours and your baby’s. Clearly, it’s a good idea to incorporate all these nutrients into your pregnancy diet, but how? You should start with the five superfoods pregnant women should eat.
Take note of why certain superfoods for pregnancy are so essential for you: The Importance of Calcium and Vitamin D in Pregnancy
The Best Superfoods for Pregnant Women
Broccoli: You want an easy way to get some calcium, folic acid, and vitamin C into your pregnancy diet? Eat more broccoli! This is among the best superfoods pregnant women should eat because it’s just so packed with nutrients. As an added bonus, the loads of vitamin C in broccoli means you’ll absorb iron easier than ever, so pair it with an iron-rich food, like brown rice. You can dip broccoli in ranch for a snack or have it as a side with lunch or dinner. Either way, it’s definitely one of the top superfoods pregnant women should eat!
Milk: Milk does a body good, especially when you’re pregnant and need calcium more than ever! With about 300 mg of calcium per serving, milk is one of best sources of this nutrient. If you don’t like to drink it straight, you can mix it with chocolate syrup for a tasty, calcium-rich treat. You can also add it to some frozen fruits or vegetables for a smoothie—and then further increase the calcium content of your drink by sprinkling some FitFormula Calcium + Vitamin D powder in! Milk is a major contender when it comes to superfoods pregnant women should eat (or should we say drink?!).
Get some ideas on how to make the perfect smoothie: 5 Ingredients to Boost Your Smoothie
Lean Meat: If you’re in search of a simple way to add some iron to your pregnancy diet, make sure some of your daily meals include a serving of lean meat. Otherwise, you could feel more fatigued—a symptom you definitely don’t need more of during pregnancy! And since your iron needs are about double the norm during pregnancy, iron-rich foods are essential if you want to avoid anemia. Plus, lean meat has protein and other important nutrients your body needs right now. That’s why it’s one of the superfoods pregnant women should eat. If having a steak or chicken breast whole doesn’t appeal to you, you’ll get the same benefits when you cut it up and add it to a salad, stir fry, pasta, or soup.
Eggs: Protein is always important; especially with baby on board, lean meat is one of the superfoods pregnant women should eat. However, if you don’t get a chance to eat meat very often, you can also use eggs as your source of protein. And the best part is there are so many ways to cook eggs that you won’t get bored with them! Scramble them for breakfast, have one hard boiled as a snack or sprinkled on your salad, and then add a fried egg to your burger at dinner and you’ve got yourself plenty of protein for the day. When it comes to superfoods pregnant women should eat, eggs are at the top of the list.
Leafy greens: Some of the best superfoods pregnant women should eat happen to be vegetables. In particular, leafy greens are great, because they’re a good source of essential nutrients like calcium. Depending on the greens you choose, you’ll also get other nutrients. For instance, spinach is a good source of not only calcium, but also iron and folic acid. Collard greens have even more calcium than spinach, in addition to potassium and magnesium. So if you want a healthy pregnancy diet, mix up some leafy greens in a salad, add them to a sandwich, or steam them—the choice is yours!
Try to include some of these superfoods for pregnancy in your diet every day if you want to ensure you’re getting the nutrients your baby—and your body—depends on. Superfoods pregnant women should eat are superfoods everyone should eat, even after baby is born— we can all benefit from them!
Planning to breastfeed once you have the baby? Read: The Top Superfoods Every Breastfeeding Mom Needs