What to eat when pregnant: The 12 best foods

Sorting out what to eat when you’re eating for two can be confusing. Our list of the top 12 foods for pregnancy, along with healthy recipes for pregnant women, can help you figure out a pregnancy diet plan that supports your well-being and your baby’s healthy development.

Top 12 Best Food For Pregnant Women

  • Eggs
  • Salmon
  • Beans
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Whole grains
  • Greek yogurt
  • Broccoli and dark leafy greens
  • Lean meats and poultry
  • Colorful fruits and veggies
  • Avocados
  • Dried fruit
  • Walnuts
Best Foods

Eggs
Eggs are a great source of protein, a crucial part of your pregnancy diet. The amino acids that makeup protein are the building blocks of the cells in your body – and your baby’s.
Eggs also contain more than a dozen vitamins and minerals, including choline. Choline – which is contained mostly in the yolks, so be sure to include them – helps your baby’s brain and spinal cord develop properly, and helps prevent certain birth defects.
Combine eggs with whatever veggies and cheese you have on hand and you’ll have the makings of a frittata. Leftovers – if there are any – are perfect for breakfast the next day.

Salmon
Omega-3 fatty acids are crucial for your baby’s brain development and may even boost your mood. Salmon is an exceptionally good source. Salmon also provides protein and vitamin D, which your baby needs for healthy bones and teeth.
Salmon (as well as herring, trout, anchovies, sardines, and shad) is a low-mercury option for the 8 to 12 ounces of seafood pregnant women are encouraged to eat each week. Find out more about eating fish safely during pregnancy.

Beans
Beans – including legumes like lentils, peas, and peanuts – are a good source of protein and an excellent source of iron, folate, potassium, and magnesium. They’re all important when you’re pregnant.
Beans are also a great food for fiber, which can help prevent and relieve two common pregnancy discomforts: constipation and hemorrhoids.
Try tossing edamame (cooked soybeans, which are also an excellent source of essential fatty acids) in soups, salads, or stir-fries. Or snack on roasted edamame.

Sweet potatoes
Sweet potatoes get their orange color from carotenoids, plant pigments that are converted to vitamin A in our bodies. Your baby needs vitamin A for healthy bones, lungs, eyes, and skin development. This sweet veggie is also a very good source of vitamin C and manganese, and a good source of vitamin B6 (which may help with morning sickness), potassium, and fiber (especially if you keep the skin on).

Whole grains
Whole grains are high in fiber and nutrients, including B vitamins, iron, folic acid (if fortified), magnesium, the antioxidant vitamin E, and the mineral selenium. They also contain phytonutrients, plant compounds that protect cells.
Trade white bread for whole grain, and sample different kinds of whole grains – from barley and buckwheat to oats and spelled – in your pregnancy diet.

Greek yogurt
Greek yogurt typically has twice the protein of regular yogurt. Plus, it’s a great source of probiotics, B vitamins, phosphorus, and calcium. Calcium helps keep your own bones strong and helps your baby develop a healthy skeleton.
Yogurt is a versatile breakfast ingredient and a wonderful addition to savory dishes too. Drinking milk is another good way to get calcium every day.

Broccoli and dark leafy greens
Broccoli and dark leafy greens like spinach, kale, and Swiss chard are prenatal superfoods, loaded with vitamins and nutrients, including vitamins A, C, and K, as well as calcium, iron, and folate. They’re also rich in antioxidants and fiber, which can ease constipation.
It’s easy to up the amount of dark leafy greens in your diet. Just chop the greens coarsely and toss into smoothies, soups, omelets, or stir-fries.
These recipes offer healthy options for comfort food.

Lean meats and poultry
Meat is an excellent source of high-quality protein and a good source of B vitamins, iron, and zinc. Iron delivers oxygen to the cells in your body, and you need more of it during pregnancy.
Look for cuts that are around 95 to 98 percent fat-free.
Skip deli meats and hot dogs, though, unless they’re heated until steaming hot. There’s a small risk of infection from bacteria and parasites such as listeria, toxoplasma, or salmonella, which can be dangerous during pregnancy for you and your baby.

Colorful Fruits and Veggies
Eating plenty of green, red, orange, yellow, and purple fruits, and vegetables help you and your baby get a variety of nutrients. Each color group provides different vitamins and minerals. Bell peppers, for example, are high in vitamin C (which will help you absorb iron), while berries are bursting with antioxidants. Salads are an easy way to combine colorful fruits and veggies.
Considering buying organic produce but concerned about the cost? Check the Dirty Dozen list of 12 fruits and vegetables that might be worth the extra money because they have the most pesticide residue.

Avocados
Avocados are high in monounsaturated fatty acids (the healthy fats), which help build your baby’s skin and brain. They’re also high in vitamin K, antioxidants, and folate, which helps prevent certain birth defects.
Plagued by leg cramps? The potassium in avocados might help. Constipated? The fiber content is an antidote. Suffering from morning sickness? The vitamin B6 in avocados – which is also good for your baby’s developing brain – can help ease nausea.
Avocados deliver a lot of flavors, creamy texture, and nutrition. Try spreading on whole-grain toast, or add to salads and smoothies.

Dried fruit
Portable and nutrient-dense, dried fruit offers a good occasional alternative to the fresh fruit that’s so important in your pregnancy diet. Look for dried fruit without added sugar.
Depending on the dried fruit you choose, you’ll boost your diet with a variety of vitamins and minerals (like iron), as well as antioxidants and fiber. Prunes, for example, are a tried-and-true remedy for constipation that plagues so many pregnant

Walnuts

Walnuts are one of the richest sources of plant-based omega-3s. They’re also a good source of magnesium, fiber, and protein (which you need more of now that you’re pregnant). Grab a handful of walnuts for an on-the-run snack, or toss some into a salad.

Check out other nuts, like almonds and pistachios, and nut and seed butter, like tahini, for similar benefits.

Original Content: https://www.babycenter.com/pregnancy/diet-and-fitness/what-to-eat-when-pregnant-the-12-best-foods_10392775