It’s baby time! As a mother to be, you are obviously concerned about how to give your child the best nutrition during your pregnancy. Eating well and staying active – this is certainly healthy in every phase of your life, but especially during pregnancy. The baby is also eating through the umbilical cord, and regular exercise provides the baby with good oxygen. A balanced and varied diet as well as an active lifestyle are especially valuable for the health of mother and child.It would also be a great goal to continue to pursue after your pregnancy as well!We have summarised the most important nutrition tips for you so that you can provide the best possible intake of nutrients and minerals for you and your baby. There are also some important facts about certain foods that you should avoid during pregnancy. At this point, however, it must also be pointed out that we here at KoRo are no doctors and therefore cannot provide any medically binding information. However, we can give you healthy advice and recommendations based on the motto "healthy mommy = healthy baby".
Become a better eater!
Maybe you can already guess what that means: If you have not always eaten healthy, it is even more important that you start doing so during your pregnancy. This means that you should develop a healthy awareness of food products in order to learn which valuable substances are provided to you from which food. Lots of fruits and vegetables and a balanced supply of carbohydrates, proteins and fats should be your base. In general, your daily meals should contain all the main groups of food. Incidentally, you can also follow the recommendation of the German Nutrition Society (DGE). Definitely worth a look. Becoming a better eater is not only good for you, but also for your baby.
Think for two, but don’t eat for two!
Did you know that the energy needs of expectant mothers increase only slightly and only in the last months of pregnancy? Then, about 10 percent more calories (kcal) - namely about 250 kcal - per day are needed. For example:
- A wholegrain bread with a slice of cheese
- 2x 100g yogurt with fresh fruits
- 100g piece of plum cake with shortcrust pastry (without cream)
So you have to listen to your body in order to know how much hunger you really have and how much energy your body needs. The most important thumb rule remains: Eat when you’re hungry. And if you stick to a healthy, varied and balanced diet, then you will steadily gain weight and that is in turn a good sign that your baby is developing in a healthy way.
Raw eggs: Raw eggs are often used in sweets, such as tiramisu. You should also avoid eggs that are not completely cooked because the risk of infection with bacteria is high.
Raw or uncooked meat: In the restaurant you should always order your meat "well-done". Again, otherwise there is a high risk of bacteria.
Raw seafood: You should avoid everything that comes from the sea and is still raw, such as oysters or sushi. There is a high risk of bacteria here.
Excessive amounts of coffee: A daily dose of up to 3 cups is perfectly fine. However, other caffeinated beverages, such as green tea, cocoa and cola, must be included in the maximum caffeine amount of 200 mg. Caffeine passes freely through the placenta, so that the concentration in the blood of the fetus is just as high as in the mother. It also increases the heart rate of the baby and activates the nervous system.
Alcohol: This should be an absolute no go in your pregnancy, because even here your baby drinks with you. There is a risk of health damage, such as developmental disorders or malformations. A strict renunciation of alcohol during pregnancy is a must, because the alcohol concentration in the blood of the unborn child increases rapidly and decreases much slower, since the liver is not fully developed.
Certain cooked fish species: Shark, swordfish, tuna, halibut, pike, monkfish, catfish or merlin contain so much naturally occurring mercury that they could be dangerous to you and your baby. This is why the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) and the Federal Ministry for the Environment (BMU) advise against the consumption of fish that could be heavily contaminated with mercury.
Wholegrain cereals: Foods with carbohydrates are an important part of a healthy diet. Especially during your pregnancy, you should make sure that bread, pasta, rice or oatmeal always consist of whole grains, as they contain a lot of fiber and vitamins.
Certain cooked fish: Salmon, herring or mackerel are fish that you can eat carefree. It is crucial that they are not raw, because of undesirable bacteria. Are these fish cooked however, they contain important omega-3 fatty acids and iodine and are therefore a valuable part of your diet during pregnancy.
Green leafy vegetables: Green leafy vegetables especially, but also vegetables in general, should be with you every day. A great vitamin intake, whether fresh, frozen, dried, as a fresh squeezed juice or homemade smoothie.
Nuts & Kernels: They provide high levels of healthy unsaturated fatty acids and, depending on the variety, they can also contain relatively high levels of protein. In addition, they contribute greatly to your vitamin supply and are ideal for a healthy snack in between.
Lentils & Beans: Legumes such as peas, beans and lentils provide valuable and many proteins. In addition, they are rich in minerals and excellent for a healthy diet.
Yoghurt: It contains a lot of protein, calcium and vitamin B. The great thing is that you can incorporate it in various dishes and thus provide you and your baby with a varied, healthy and balanced diet.
Avocados: They provide valuable fats for you and your baby and also help both of you to be full for a long time. In addition, it is a really broad natural product, which can be used in many great dishes.
Lean Meat: Lean beef, poultry and pork, meaning low in fat, is easy to enjoy. The meat must be thoroughly cooked, otherwise the risk of Salmonella infection increases. Also, you should not consume too much meat, only about 3 times a week up to 150g of meat. Breaded or fried meat should be avoided.
You should avoid raw milk products. That means that you should try to keep your fingers off certain types of these products during your pregnancy, even cheese. Cheese with a white moldy bark like Brie and Camembert, or blue cheese like Stilton, Gorgonzola or Roquefort, can contain Listeria bacteria that can harm your baby. Since your immune system changes during pregnancy, your defenses against bacteria and infections are weakened.
Can I eat vegetarian or even vegan during pregnancy?
Sure, generally speaking, you can also abstain from meat during pregnancy, if you choose your food consciously and also integrate dairy products and eggs into your nutrition plan. Since meat is a good source of iron, vegetarian women should be especially mindful of their iron supply during pregnancy and should eat plenty of whole grains in combination with fruits and vegetables. However, purely vegan food is even with a careful food selection not possible. This is because there is a risk of serious deficiency symptoms for the child. So, if you are vegan, you should definitely talk to your gynecologist.