growth of a tiny baby inside a mother’s womb is like the foundation
of a building. The diet of the mother during the 9 months of pregnancy
directly affects the foundation of a new human life. So young mothers
to be must take great care and proper advice to make sure your diet
is healthy and nutritious for your baby.
As new cells, tissues and bones are being formed
all the time, the most important nutrients that must be supplied
and that are required in excess are protein, vitamins (specially
B) and minerals (especially calcium and iron).
Milk / Curds is one of the most important foods to be consumed as
it is a rich source of protein, vitamin A and D and Calcium. Those
who eat egg may eat one egg daily during pregnancy ( egg whites
may be 2-3 in number). Chicken and fish too may be eaten in small
quantities and preferably at lunch, as they may be difficult to
digest at night. Restrict mutton, beef, etc. as they are too fatty.
For a good iron intake, never skip a meal, try to ensure dhal intake
at lunch and dinner and make sure you eat whole-wheat chapati’s
at least once a day, preferably at dinner. Also eat fresh fruits
and vegetables daily as their supply of B and C vitamins help the
In the 2nd half of pregnancy, the need for protein
and calcium are markedly increased and therefore I would recommend
that additional glasses of milk (total 3 glasses) are consumed from
the 4th or 5th month. Milk is a rich source of protein and calcium,
which are essential for the development of the tissues and bones
of the baby growing inside the womb.
Preventing and controlling Nausea and Vomiting
Nausea and vomiting are mainly caused by the changes
in the hormones produced during pregnancy. For some it is more severe
than for others. It is aggravated by any kind of emptiness in the
stomach. As the baby grows your food requirements increase and if
this need is not met by regular meals and regular timings of meals,
acids build up in the stomach and you feel nauseated. For some this
is felt strongly early in the morning and we advise you to try and
eat a couple of biscuits or a small banana even before you get out
of bed. Otherwise by the time you start brushing your teeth you
may vomit. For some this happens around 6pm if they have not eaten
any thing since lunchtime. Please make sure that you eat some toast
or biscuits and milk by 4 pm and again have some fruit by 6pm.
Preventing and controlling Heartburn
During the last trimester when the foetus is growing
rapidly, the expanded uterus may press against the stomach, causing
contents to return to the esophagus; the burning symptoms may be
reduced somewhat with these anti heartburn tips.
Food intake should be divided into 4-6 small
meals, which are eaten slowly in a relaxed environment.
Spicy, high fat, and rich foods, as well as
caffeine, alcohol, and individually bothersome items, are to
Food intake just prior to bed or naptime can cause symptoms.
- Antacids should only be taken if prescribed by the attending