What Do I Need To Eat?

It’s easy to get caught up in the types of vitamins and nutrients that you should be eating on a daily basis, but that’s not always easy or practical to keep track of in a busy life. Especially as you are getting ready for your new arrival. Here is an easier way to keep track of what you should be eating every day to make sure you are getting the proper nutrition without having to worry about which foods have Vitamin E, Folic Acid, Vitamin B or the rest.

Protein: 3 servings a day. Each of these count as a serving: 3 8oz glasses of milk, 1 cup of cottage cheese, 4 eggs, 4oz canned salmon, 40z before cooking poultry, lean beef or pork

Calcium: 4 daily servings. A serving could be: 1 cup of milk, 1 cup of yogurt, 4oz of canned salmon with bones, 3 TBSP sesame seeds, 1 cup cooked greens

Vitamin C: 3 daily servings. A serving could be: 3/4 cup tomato juice, 1/2 medium green pepper, 1/3 cup strawberries, 1 cup edamame, 1/2 cup diced pineapple

Green Leafy / Yellow Vegetables and Fruit: 3-4 servings per day. A serving example: 1/2 a mango, 3/4 cup grapefruit juice, 1/2 a carrot, 1/2 small sweet potato

Other Vegetables and Fruit: 1-2 servings per day. Example of a serving: 1 medium apple or pear, 1/2 cup pitted cherries, 2 small plums

Whole Grains: 6 or more servings a day. Examples: 1 slice of bread,  1/2 cup of granola, 1/2 cup rice, couscous, barley or quinoa, 2 cups popcorn

Iron Rich Foods: Eat some daily. Examples: Beef, poultry, baked potato with its skin left on, spinach, pumpkin seeds

Fats: 4 servings a day. Examples of healthy fats: 1 TBSP butter, 1/4 cup sour cream, 2 TBSP almond butter, peanut butter or cream cheese

Salt: Eat in moderation.

Fluid: Eight 8oz glasses of fluid a day

It may sound like a lot – but many of these categories over lap and it is easier to know if you have had a serving of Green Leafy Vegetables than to know if you have had any Vitamin B12 in your diet today.

Remember if you are an average weight you only need on average an extra 300 calories a day. During your first trimester you need hardly an extra at all, during your second 300 – 350 extra a day will do and in your third trimester only an extra 500 calories a day. There are 170 calories just in a regular banana.

** This information is summarized from the What to Expect When You Are Expecting series of books

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