Which vegetables you should enjoy while pregnant & which to avoid
OB/GYN Knowledge Center
Benefits of Eating Vegetables for Expectant Mothers During Pregnancy
The list of food restrictions that pregnant women must contend with is endless: say goodbye to deli meat, seafood and even caffeine for a while. Your baby's development and growth can see an impact from what you consume, so an abundance of caution never hurts.
Eating the right vegetables during pregnancy can provide essential vitamins and minerals that help your baby in the womb and after birth. However, some vegetables might be risky during pregnancy.
Learn more about the best vegetables during pregnancy, as well as which vegetables are good to avoid.
Benefits of vegetables during pregnancy
The best vegetables during pregnancy offer plenty of fiber and other nutrients. Eating the right foods, in the correct amounts, at the right time, makes all the difference. A healthy diet will make it easier to avoid nutritional deficiencies and gestational diabetes.
Benefits of the right diet include:
Healthy maternal weight gain
Blood pressure within appropriate levels
Reduced risk of developing anemia
Healthy birth weight for the baby
Some of the vital nutrients include:
Beta carotene, which benefits the baby's immune system, eyesight and tissue development
Vitamin C for healthy tissue development, as well as healthy teeth and bones
Folic acid, for a healthy weight and preventing neural tube defects
Potassium, for better blood pressure regulation
Eating vegetables is one of the best ways to keep your baby healthy during and beyond your pregnancy.
Best vegetables for pregnant mothers
Some of the best vegetables to eat during pregnancy include:
✔ Summer and winter squash — excellent sources of protein, fiber, folate and Vitamins A, C and K
✔ Asparagus — contains Vitamins A, C, E and K, as well as fiber and folate
✔ Tomatoes — a source of Vitamin C and K, and biotin
✔ Beets — a natural source of fiber that is also good for immune system support
✔ Yams or sweet potatoes — great sources of Vitamins A, B, and C
✔ Bell peppers — an excellent fiber source
✔ Parsley — a natural source of Vitamin E, protein and riboflavin
✔ Broccoli — a good source for fiber, as well as folate and Vitamins C and K
✔ Leafy greens like chard, spinach, mustard or collard greens, lettuce or kale — an excellent source of fiber, folate and carotenoids
✔ Escarole or endive
✔ Green peas — high in fiber and Vitamins C and K
When you see your doctor, find out about other vegetables that may be beneficial for you and the coming baby.
Some vegetables to avoid while pregnant
There are also a few types of vegetables that pregnant women should avoid. All of these items carry the risk of exposure to bacteria that can harm your baby:
✘ Raw sprouts, including mung bean, clover and alfalfa
✘ Any unwashed produce
✘ Raw radishes
✘ Prepackaged salad mixes
✘ Salad bar items
Sprouts and radishes are safe to consume if cooked. Also, swap out canned vegetables for fresh produce, as fresh vegetables and fruits are more nutritionally complete.
How many vegetable servings are appropriate?
Feeling a little more hungry than usual is reasonable because you are eating for two. Smaller, more frequent meals are often recommended. You might be more likely to have digestive problems, and smaller meals reduce the likelihood of these issues.
Most women do well with 2.3 to 5 cups of either raw or cooked vegetables daily. Consuming vegetables is desirable instead of using supplements alone. Getting the amount of sleep that you need, as well as exercising, will also help.
How to get more veggies into your diet
There are some exciting ways that you might want to consider for preparing vegetables. Grilling or roasting vegetables with spices like oregano, coriander, thyme or basil can make them more flavorful.
Consider cutting up or shredding properly cleaned vegetables, and eating them with a dip. If you're trying to get more of a vegetable that you're not fond of consuming, a dip might be what you need to consume the offending veggie more willingly.
Try mixing up different vegetables and eating them in a sauce. You'll be able to focus more on the sauce and less on which vegetables you don't care for.
It's vitally important to wash vegetables before use. Remaining soil after harvesting or pesticide residue can be harmful to both you and the child. Even if the vegetables you eat are organic, washing before consumption is a good habit.
Always make sure you are in touch with your pregnancy care doctor about your diet, especially if there is anything you are unsure about. Erring on the side of caution is always a safe strategy.
If you have any questions, reach out to our team at All About Women today to schedule an appointment. We’ll be happy to address all your concerns.
Top 9 foods to avoid during pregnancy
Pregnancy causes a lot of changes in the body, and pregnant women should consider adjusting their eating habits to adapt to these changes. Diet is one of the most important factors that can affect a pregnant woman’s overall health and the health of her child. Important foods to avoid include raw shellfish and undercooked eggs.
Eating a healthful diet is essential during pregnancy, but there are some foods that pregnant women should avoid altogether. Many people understand the risks of eating high-mercury fish or raw meats, but there are also other foods that many people would not expect to cause potential issues during pregnancy.
Pregnancy affects the immune system, which may make some women more susceptible to infection. Many foods carry bacteria or other infectious germs that may cause problems during pregnancy. Even in cases where the pregnant woman does not feel sick, some of these germs may still affect the fetus.
Share on PinterestFish can have a high mercury content, which is unsafe for the fetus.
Though many people see fish as a good, clean source of protein and nutrients, such as fatty acids, the type of fish a pregnant person eats is very important.
Some fish tend to be high in mercury, which is very toxic and cause problems for both the pregnant parent and the fetus.
According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (USDHHS), pregnant women should avoid the following fish:
big eye tuna
Gulf of Mexico tilefish
They also recommend avoiding all raw or undercooked fish, such as from sushi or sashimi. Uncooked fish may contain parasites or harmful bacteria. Cook all fish to 145℉.
However, many fish are still safe to eat while pregnant. As the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) note, some fish contain lower levels of mercury, including:
canned light tuna
These fish choices can help provide helpful nutrients, and the FDA recommend eating two to three servings of these fish each week.
Though some people may think they can drink small amounts of alcohol during pregnancy, there is no safe level for alcohol consumption during pregnancy.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) note that any alcohol in the woman’s blood passes to the fetus through the umbilical cord. This may cause a range of physical or mental developmental issues.
Most doctors will advise pregnant women to avoid alcohol.
While pregnant, it is best to avoid all raw seafood, especially raw shellfish. The USDHHS food safety website notes that raw shellfish, such as oysters, crab, and clams, may be a potential source of Vibrio bacteria, which can cause cholera and other infections. Cook all shellfish to 145 °F.
These infections may cause loss of water and electrolytes in the body, which can be severe and potentially fatal. They may also cause a change in the immune system that puts the child’s health at risk.
A study in the International Journal of Infectious Diseases reports that there is a link between abnormal changes in the immune system during pregnancy and other issues, such as poor fetal growth, preterm birth, and preeclampsia.
Share on PinterestDeli meats and soft cheeses are not safe to eat during pregnancy.
Some types of meat could harbor the potentially dangerous Listeria bacteria.
According to the CDC, Listeria infections may be particularly dangerous for pregnant women and newborns. Listeria can also lead to miscarriage.
To avoid contracting Listeria, cook all meat to 165℉ before eating it. This includes all meats that a person would normally eat cold, such as sliced meats from a deli.
This may be more difficult for cured meats, such as Serrano ham, pepperoni, or pancetta, so it may be best to avoid these meats.
Greens and sprouts are generally great foods to add to the diet as they contain large amounts of fiber and nutrients. However, some greens or sprouts may contain bacteria, such as Salmonella or E. coli, which can cause infection.
A study in the Clinical Microbiology and Infection notes that bacterial infections of the blood, of which E. coli infections are among the most common types, are potentially fatal during pregnancy. It is essential to avoid E. coli while pregnant.
The CDC note that E. coli infections are hard to pin down because they can derive from many different sources.
An E. coli infection can cause a variety of problems, including food poisoning, urinary tract infections, and respiratory illness.
About 20 percent of E. coli infections are due to contaminated foods, which may include greens and sprouts.
Avoid raw or undercooked sprouts, such as:
Always use fresh, new sprouts and cook them thoroughly before eating them.
The USDHHS also warn against eating salads made in a store deli. Be wary if the salad contains ingredients that may carry bacteria, such as ham, chicken, or seafood.
Eggs are a simple source of protein and nutrients, but undercooked or raw eggs may contain Salmonella bacteria. The CDC note that a Salmonella infection typically lasts about a week, though it may be more serious in people with compromised immune systems and very young children.
Pregnant women can prevent infection by avoiding sources of raw or undercooked eggs, such as:
poached or fried eggs with a runny yolk
lightly scrambled eggs
salad dressings that contain egg, such as Caesar dressing
artisan or homemade ice cream
casseroles and other products containing eggs
When buying eggs, choose pasteurized eggs. The pasteurization process kills all bacteria in the egg, reducing the risk of infection. Always check the labels of store-bought products containing egg to check for pasteurization. Cook all eggs and products that contain eggs to 160 ℉.
Many kinds of cheese contain helpful bacteria, but some contain harmful bacteria as well.
The USDHHS recommend that pregnant women avoid soft cheeses made from unpasteurized milk, such as:
Soft cheese may contain harmful bacteria, such as Listeria or E. coli. It is safer to eat hard varieties, such as Swiss or Cheddar cheese. Pasteurized cheese is an even better choice, so check the label to ensure the cheese is made from pasteurized milk.
Share on PinterestDrinking high amounts of caffeine may increase the risk of pregnancy loss.
While some people can enjoy a small amount of caffeine during pregnancy, doctors often recommend that pregnant women avoid it completely because caffeine can pass to the fetus.
A fetus is unable to break down caffeine, which can cause problems.
As a 2016 study in Public Health Nutrition notes, pregnant women who consume higher levels of caffeine may run the risk of pregnancy loss, though the research is still inconclusive.
The USDHHS advise pregnant women to avoid both unpasteurized milk and unpasteurized fruit juice.
Unpasteurized milk may contain E. coli, Listeria, or Salmonella.
These bacteria can cause severe infections in pregnant women, especially if their immune system is already stressed. Always drink pasteurized milk and check the labels of any milk-containing foods to confirm this.
Unpasteurized juice or cider may be a source of E. coli. Avoid raw fruit juices or cider, including fresh squeezed juices, such as orange or apple juice. Boil any unpasteurized juice or cider for at least 1 minute to eliminate bacteria before letting it cool and drinking.
Though there are some restrictions to the diet while pregnant, these restrictions help to ensure the health of both woman and child.
As pregnancy causes many changes in the body, doctors may recommend individual dietary options.
By working with a doctor or nutritionist, most people can find a diet plan that helps them avoid problematic foods during pregnancy.
What Not to Eat During Pregnancy
Your body works like a finely tuned machine to support a growing fetus, but a healthy and balanced diet (and avoiding certain foods) can help Mother Nature do her job even better. So, how is the nutrition of pregnant women different from the usual proper nutrition? What exactly should you be eating? Many pregnant women also wonder what foods to avoid and what not to eat during pregnancy. Here you will find answers to your questions, as well as practical advice on nutrition during pregnancy.
We are always ready to help you with advice, but remember that each woman's pregnancy is different, so our advice cannot replace the advice of a doctor. Contact your doctor to discuss any individual changes to your diet.
What not to eat during pregnancy
The good news is that healthy eating during pregnancy is very similar to healthy eating for non-pregnant women. You should eat regularly and try to eat mostly natural foods such as vegetables, fruits and whole grains. Also, try to limit high-sugar and processed foods in your diet.
For safety reasons, avoid raw or undercooked meat, liver, raw fish sushi, raw eggs, soft cheeses, and unpasteurized milk and juices. Below you will find more information on some of the foods that should not be consumed during pregnancy: 1 2 3
mercury content, which include marlin, swordfish, king mackerel, mackerel, shark, tuna and tilefish. Only canned light tuna is allowed in moderation.
To the dismay of all sushi lovers, raw fish, shellfish and crustaceans are also among the foods that are highly discouraged during pregnancy, as they may contain bacteria or even parasites. Smoked seafood should also be excluded from the diet.
Soft cheeses made from unpasteurized milk Soft cheeses such as feta, brie, dorblu and camembert are also on the list of foods that pregnant women should avoid. Because these cheeses are made from raw milk, they can be contaminated with Listeria. 4 Rule of thumb: look for the label that says the product is pasteurized!
Unpasteurized milk and juices Similar rules apply to milk and juices. Freshly squeezed juice or any unpasteurized juice may contain disease-causing bacteria (E. coli, Listeria, Salmonella) 5 , so these products should not be consumed during pregnancy.
Raw eggs Also on your pregnancy avoid list are raw eggs or foods that contain raw or half-baked eggs: muffin mix, cookie dough, soft-boiled eggs, and fried eggs. Also be aware of foods that may contain half-baked eggs, such as salads, condiments, scrambled eggs, and ice cream. During pregnancy, it is necessary to consume only those eggs that have been heat-treated until fully cooked.
Semi-cooked or raw meat and poultry Semi-cooked or raw meat may contain listeria. During pregnancy, be careful to avoid such deli meats, or steam the meat until it is fully cooked. Cold meat pâtés are also prohibited. As for sliced meat, make sure that it has been heat-treated until it is fully cooked before eating it.
Raw or semi-cooked foods of plant origin Eating raw vegetables, fruits, berries, lettuce, legumes, root vegetables, etc. carries the risk of food poisoning and should be thoroughly washed or cooked before consumption to reduce the risk of bacterial growth . Foods to Avoid During Pregnancy0005
Pre-cooked fresh minced meat Be careful when eating pre-cooked fresh minced meat. If you decide to buy a whole stuffed bird, you need to buy it frozen and do not defrost before cooking. Bacteria can grow in fresh meat in combination with stuffing. 7
Sweets, carbohydrate-rich foods, fast food Although there is no conclusive scientific evidence, sweets, fast food, and foods high in fat and carbohydrates are usually on the list of foods that expectant mothers crave to eat. If you have an overwhelming craving for certain foods during pregnancy, try choosing healthier options. Can't imagine a meal without french fries? Fry foods in little or no oil with the Airfryer Airfryer, a healthy alternative that lets you enjoy delicious fried food at 9% less0%*fat content. You must remember that a balanced, healthy diet is important for maintaining your health and the health of your unborn baby.
Excess caffeine During pregnancy, restrictions are placed not only on food, but also on drinks, among which drinks containing caffeine should be avoided. Remember that caffeine is found not only in coffee, but also in drinks such as tea, cocoa, cola.
The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that “women with daily high caffeine intake (more than 300 mg per day) reduce their daily intake during pregnancy to reduce the risk of miscarriage or low birth weight.” 8
After the birth of a child, the diet of a nursing mother is no less important than during pregnancy. Watch a webinar from a Philips Avent expert on nutrition during this period:
Healthy nutrition for expectant mothers
Pregnancy is a period of intensive growth and development of your unborn child, as well as a time of many physiological changes in the mother's body, so the nutrition of a pregnant woman should contribute in every possible way to the success of passing this path. It's a good idea to discuss this with your doctor so you can make sure you're getting enough of the right nutrients. Here are some key tips for a healthy, balanced diet during pregnancy:
Eat whole grains such as whole grain bread and pasta; Choose lean meat or poultry and aim for 225-350 grams of boiled fish per week (remember to choose low-mercury fish).
Your diet should include five food groups: grains, fruits, vegetables, protein, and dairy. 9 Have half your plate of vegetables and fruits and the other half whole grains.
And the easiest way to eat more fruits and vegetables is to make smoothies. Now there is a huge variety of recipes, and Philips blenders will help you cook them quickly and achieve the most delicate texture. Make new recipes from your favorite foods and add greens and nuts to them.
Talk to your doctor about your diet, vitamin supplements, and other prenatal medications, such as folic acid and iron supplements. During pregnancy, there is an increased need for vitamins and minerals, the full amount of which food products alone cannot provide.
Choose monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fats, such as olive oil and avocados, and limit saturated fats and empty-calorie foods, such as candy or sugary drinks.
Stay on top of your pregnancy health with the Pregnancy+ mobile app. This application is specially designed for the entire pregnancy and childbirth period and provides comprehensive guidance through all stages of pregnancy. Always check with your doctor before embarking on any particular diet.
Articles & Tips from Philips Avent
Proper nutrition during pregnancy - do's and don'ts
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A woman's body has everything it needs to bear a healthy baby. However, good nutrition and the rejection of certain foods will help Mother Nature better fulfill this mission. What are the features of nutrition during pregnancy? Is it not enough to just eat well? What foods should you eat during pregnancy? Which foods should be limited, and which should be avoided completely? In this article, you will find answers to all your questions, as well as get important tips on nutrition during pregnancy.
Our goal is to help you, but remember that every pregnancy is different and the best advice is no substitute for a visit to the doctor. Be sure to consult with your doctor about changes in your diet.
Products should be abandoned during pregnancy
The good news is that full nutrition during grateful. Try to eat regularly and eat more natural, organic foods such as vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. Minimize high-sugar and processed foods on your table.
To be safe, avoid raw or undercooked meats, liver, sushi, raw eggs, soft cheeses, and unpasteurized milk and juices. Below we detail what foods to avoid during pregnancy 1,2,3 .
High mercury fish, raw fish and seafood
Avoid high mercury fish such as macaira, swordfish, mackerel, whitefin tuna and tilefish. Canned diet tuna is allowed in moderation.
Disappointing sushi lovers: Raw fish and seafood are also among the foods prohibited during pregnancy, as they may contain bacteria or parasites. Smoked seafood should also be excluded from the menu.
Unpasteurized soft cheeses
Soft cheeses such as feta, brie or camembert are also on the list of foods that pregnant women should not consume. They are made from raw milk and can therefore be contaminated with Listeria 4 .
Practical tip: Look for the label that says the product has been pasteurized!
Unpasteurized milk and juices
The same rule applies to juices and milk. Freshly squeezed and any unpasteurized juices may contain disease-causing bacteria (E. coli, listeria, salmonella) 5 and should not be consumed during pregnancy.
The list of foods that should not be consumed during pregnancy includes raw eggs, as well as foods containing raw protein or yolk - pastry dough, soft-boiled eggs and scrambled eggs. Be wary of foods that contain undercooked eggs. These are salads, sauces, eggnog and ice cream. During pregnancy, you can only eat hard-boiled or pasteurized eggs.
Undercooked, undercooked or raw meat and poultry
Raw and undercooked meats may be contaminated with listeria. It is better to play it safe and not to eat semi-finished meat products during pregnancy. Alternatively, steam them up. Chilled pâtés and meat spreads are also taboo. For whole cuts of meat, make sure they have been thoroughly cooked before eating.
Raw or undercooked sprouts
Eating raw sprouts of alfalfa, radish, clover, legumes or any other plant may cause various foodborne illnesses. Sprouts should be cooked to reduce the risk of bacterial contamination. 6 Unwashed fruits and vegetables, as well as store-bought salads, pose the same danger.
Foods to limit during pregnancy
Some products are not on the prohibited list. But if you want to stay healthy and happy while expecting a baby, it is better to reduce their consumption to a minimum:
Fresh meat with stuffing
Be careful with stuffed meat. If you decide to buy a whole stuffed bird, make sure the meat is frozen. Bacteria can grow in fresh stuffed meat 7 .
Sweets, carbohydrates and fast food
Despite the absence of convincing scientific evidence, sweetness, Fast-Food and Food Foods with high content of fat expectant mothers. If you are one of the women who experience cravings for certain foods during pregnancy, try to find a healthy alternative. Do you always crave fried potatoes? Fry food in a small amount of oil or without oil in the multi-oven. This approach will allow you to enjoy delicious fried food, which contains 90% less fat*. However, remember that a balanced, healthy diet plays an important role in your safety and the safety of your unborn child.
During pregnancy, it is important not only to avoid certain foods. You should also pay attention to what you drink. Drinks with a high content of caffeine are banned.
The World Health Organization recommends that pregnant women who drink caffeinated beverages (more than 300 mg per day) reduce their daily caffeine intake to reduce the risk of miscarriage and neonatal weight loss 8 .
Healthy nutrition tips for expectant mothers
Pregnancy is a time of intensive growth and development of the baby. The physiological changes that occur in your body and properly organized nutrition will help turn this process into an exciting journey. Discuss your diet with your doctor. This will ensure that you are taking in the right amounts of the right nutrients. Here are some basic rules for a healthy, balanced diet during pregnancy:
Eat whole grains such as whole grain bread and pasta, opt for lean meats or poultry, and aim for 230-350 grams of boiled fish per week (remember to choose fish with a low mercury content).
Make sure your diet includes five main food groups: grains, fruits, vegetables, protein and dairy products. ukti. The other half - whole grain products 9 . Half of the conventional plate should be vegetables and fruits. The other half is whole grains.
Talk to your doctor about your diet and the need for prenatal vitamins and minerals, especially folic acid and iron. During pregnancy, women experience an increased need for vitamins and trace elements, and it is often difficult for them to get everything they need from food.
Choose foods rich in mono- or polyunsaturated fats, such as olive oil and avocados, and limit foods high in saturated fats and empty calories, such as candy and sugary drinks.
Remember, before making any changes to your diet, be sure to check with your doctor.
* Compared to fried potatoes cooked in a conventional deep fryer.