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Health Tip

Healthy Prenatal Snacks

Pregnant women need to be extra conscious about their, not only for themselves but for their babies as well. They should avoid physical exertion and mental stress, take plenty of rest and eat healthy and nutritious foods. Eating healthy foods is especially important as the quality of food directly affects the growth of the baby. Some of the foods recommended by the experts are fruits and vegetables, dairy, lean meats, and nuts and seeds.

Fruits and Vegetables:

Fruits and vegetables are very important for pregnant women, according to They are storehouses of vitamins and minerals that our body needs. Many of them also contain fiber that is required by the digestive system. recommends five daily servings of 1/2 cup of fruit juice (fresh, canned or frozen), 3/4 cup of 100% vegetable or fruit juice, a medium-sized piece of fruit, 1/2 cup of vegetables (raw or cooked), and 2 cups of raw leafy vegetables.

Dairy products:

A pregnant woman needs of daily dose of 1,000 mg of calcium per day, according to Calcium is essential for the baby's growth as well as the mother's bones. If the mother's calcium intake is insufficient, the baby absorbs it from her body, which results in the weakening of the mother's bones. The best sources of natural calcium are dairy foods including milk, pasteurized cheese and yogurt.

Lean Meats:

Lean meats contain vitamin B and a variety of proteins that are essential for the baby's growth during the later states of pregnancy. A pregnant woman needs at least two servings of 2 to 3 oz of lean meat such as chicken, fish and turkey every day, according to Fish also contains omega-3 fatty acids which is good for the baby's brain. However, lean meats that are not fully cooked should be avoided as they may contain a bacterium called listeria which causes a disease called Listeriosis, whose symptoms include fever, diarrhea and nausea. American Pregnancy Association recommends that the meats should be subjected to at least 160o F.

Nuts and Seeds:

Nuts and seeds contain proteins and fatty acids including omega-3 that are essential for the baby's growth. Walnuts and flax seeds are some of the best sources of fatty acids; and hazelnuts, almonds and sunflower seeds are good sources of vitamin E, according to the United States Department of Agriculture.

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