top of page

Balanced Nutrition: Best Foods to Eat for Two When Pregnant

OC birth doula

With so much information out there, it can be hard to figure out what to do and where to start when eating for two. Lets cut through some of the noise and get back to basics as nutrition is the first way a mother takes care of her unborn baby. As with everything, keep in mind that balance is KEY. While the following is optional, it is also important to allow yourself to occasional indulgence.

During pregnancy, it's important to consume a well-balanced diet that includes a variety of nutrient-rich foods to support both maternal health and fetal development. Finding the best foods to eat for two when pregnant, can seem daunting as the foods you eat and the nutrients, or lack of, will directly effect the growth and health of your fetus. The following is a list of food groups that are particularly beneficial during pregnancy:

Orange County Doula
  • Fruits and Vegetables: These provide essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Aim for a colorful variety to ensure a broad range of nutrients. To help you get more fruits and veggies into your diet try a smoothie. Here is a link for some amazing recipes: Best Pregnancy Smoothies .

  • Whole grains: Whole grain foods such as whole wheat bread, brown rice, quinoa, oats, and barley are rich in fiber, B vitamins, and minerals like iron and magnesium. Here is a link for Best Grains for Pregnancy.

  • Lean proteins: Protein is the basic building block for sustaining and developing healthy proteins in your body. It is one of the most important nutrients that you and your baby need when eating for two as protein is crucial for the development of the baby's tissues and organs. The goal for pregnant women should be 100 grams a day. Sources of lean protein include poultry, fish, lean meat, eggs, legumes (beans and lentils), tofu, and nuts. Here is a link to some amazing recipes that will help increase your protein in each meal.

  • Dairy products: Milk, yogurt, and cheese are excellent sources of calcium, which is essential for bone development in the fetus. Opt for whole fat options to utilize healthy fat intake. Click here for some fun and creative ideas on how to get more dairy in your diet. If you are dairy free, click here for some great alternatives.

Orange County Doula
  • Healthy fats: Foods rich in healthy fats, such as avocados, nuts, seeds, and fatty fish (like salmon and sardines), provide omega-3 fatty acids that are important for brain and eye development in the baby. Healthy fats are important for brain health, energy, cell rejuvenation and so much more! Here is a great resource to learn how to cook with healthy fats.

  • Iron-rich foods: Iron is crucial for the production of red blood cells and preventing anemia during pregnancy. Good sources of iron include lean meats, poultry, fish, fortified cereals, legumes, and leafy green vegetables like spinach and kale. Click here to view some great recipes for iron rich eating.

  • Calcium-rich foods: In addition to dairy products, calcium can be found in fortified plant-based milk alternatives, tofu made with calcium sulfate, and leafy greens

  • Healthy snacks: Opt for nutritious snacks like fresh fruit, yogurt, nuts, whole grain crackers with cheese, or vegetable sticks with hummus to keep energy levels stable throughout the day.

Orange County Doula

Remember to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated, and consult with a healthcare provider or registered dietitian for personalized dietary recommendations during pregnancy. Additionally, it's essential to avoid certain foods and beverages that may pose risks to the developing baby, such as unpasteurized dairy products, raw or undercooked meats, fish high in mercury, excessive caffeine, and alcohol. As always, check with your doctor if you have questions and eat sweets in moderation! Happy Eating!


Featured Posts
Recent Posts
Search By Tags
bottom of page