Nutrition is of the essence, and “you are what you eat” is never as true as it is when you have a developing baby inside you. The foods you choose will nourish and help determine not only a healthy pregnancy, but also your child’s long-term health. Eating high-quality, pregnancy power foods helps both of you derive the best potential from your health.
So, now that the seed has been planted, so to speak, it’s a great time for the seeds for healthy eating to be tilled. We’ve all heard the expression “eating for two,” but although you will probably find yourself eating more than usual, you won’t necessarily be eating double the amount that you’re used to. You should, however, at least double your nutrients and your level of self-care. Here are the basics and some foods to emphasize:
Fundamental building blocks for your daily nutrition
Calories: 2,300-3,200 (if you’re carrying multiples, add 300 calories more for each additional baby)
Fiber: 28 grams
Protein: 71 grams (increase about 10 grams per trimester)
Carbohydrates: 175 grams Water: 3 liters
Pregnancy power foods
Bone stock is a great way to consume a gentle-to-digest, mineral-rich food source—and doubles as a base for other recipes that call for stock.
Chickpeas (garbanzo beans) are an incredible source folate (the natural form of folic acid).
Leafy greens are rich in magnesium, fiber, and enzymes.
Coconut water for hydration, hydration, hydration, plus electrolytes!
Recipe for calcium-rich, savory yogurt
This dish is a nice change of pace that incorporates both sweet and savory flavors.
1⁄4 cup finely chopped yellow onion
2 tablespoons butter or ghee (clarified butter)
1 large garlic clove, minced
1⁄2 teaspoon ground cumin
A pinch of ground turmeric
One 15-ounce, BPA-free can of chickpeas, drained (or cooked from dried chickpeas)
1 cup water or chicken or vegetable broth Lemon wedge Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste 1⁄4 cup slivered almonds and/or walnuts
1 1⁄2 cups whole-fat yogurt with live cultures 1 cup chopped or grated cucumber 1 tablespoon chopped mint
In a medium skillet, heat the butter or ghee until it melts but does not brown.
Add onion and garlic and cook over medium heat until onion is translucent, five to seven minutes.
Stir in cumin and turmeric, stirring, for one minute. Add the chickpeas and broth and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer over low heat for fifteen minutes. Remove lid and bring back to a boil. Cook, uncovered, until the liquid is reduced, about three minutes. Stir in a squeeze of lemon and season with salt and pepper. In a small, dry skillet, toast the almonds or walnuts, stirring, until golden—about four minutes. Scoop yogurt into a bowl and top with chickpea mixture, nuts, cucumber, and mint.