Having a healthy lifestyle is important for every part of your life, especially when you are about to have a baby. When you are pregnant, the foods you eat can help you have a healthier pregnancy. What you are eating really matters!
A healthy diet with the right nutrients can help lower your risk for pregnancy complications. A diet with lots of folic acid, vitamin B12, and omega-3 fatty acids have been linked to increased fertility. Studies show that eating more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, and legumes while eating less processed foods and red meats can help lower your risk for gestational diabetes, high blood pressure, and preterm delivery.
These foods provide the nutrients for a healthy pregnancy and a healthy lifestyle overall. Folic acid is a vitamin that is important during pregnancy; it can help protect your baby from brain, spine, and mouth defects, and helps with your own body’s growth and development. Beans, leafy green vegetables, peanuts, and citrus fruits are some of the many foods that have folic acid.
Certain steps should be taken before pregnancy to make sure that you and your baby are healthy, such as getting to a healthy weight. Being under- or overweight during pregnancy can lead to preterm birth and other complications. It isn’t healthy to try to change your weight during pregnancy. Making changes to your diet and physical activity routine before getting pregnant can help you have a healthy pregnancy.
There are lots of resources to help you plan your meals, such as the US Department of Agriculture’s MyPlate program. You can also reach out to your healthcare provider for tips on how to have a balanced diet. Sources also recommend getting a healthcare check-up (preconception check ups) to make sure that your body is ready to have a baby. It is important to monitor your health, as this will be a reflection of your baby’s health as well.