Prenatal Superfoods

Prenatal Superfoods ~ Super Natural Foods

These powerful foods pack plenty of nutrients to keep mom-to-be and baby healthy through pregnancy, and beyond.

Eggs

Their Power

Eggs are the gold standard for protein.

They also happen to be a great source of folate, iron and choline.

Why it's good for the both of you.

Not only are eggs a relatively cheap, versatile and convenient source of protein, but they contain choline too.

Choline is critical to fetal brain development and reduces the risk of neural tube defects, such as spinal bifida.

To reap the benefits you'll have to eat the entire egg as choline is contained in the yolk.

Give your baby a brain boost by buying eggs fortified with omega-3s.

Sweet Potatoes

The Power

Sweet Potatoes are full of nutritious fiber, vitamin-B6 (more than bananas), vitamin-C and iron, as well as copper and beta-carotene.

Why it's good for the both of you.

We're singling out sweet potatoes for their beta-carotene, which is an antioxidant that your body converts to vitamin-A.

Vitamin-A plays an important part in the development of your baby's eyes, bones and skin.

Sweet potatoes are also a great way to meet your iron quota.

Not only do these orange spuds contain iron, but they also have copper, which is a mineral that aids in your body's ability to absorb the iron.

They're great mashed, baked or as Sweet potato fries.

Nuts

Prenatal Power

This crunchy snack is full of healthy fats, including omega-3's, plus protein, fiber and a variety of vitamins and minerals such as magnesium.

Why they're good for the both of you.

Munching on magnesium rich foods helps reduce the risk of premature labor and aids in the development of your baby's nervous system.

A quarter cup of almonds contains 98 mg., so keep a stash in your purse for a convenient prenatal power snack on the go.

Control the Cravings

If you feel like a bottomless pit, try noshing on shelled, unsalted pistachios.

They take longer to eat, giving your body more time to register that it's full.

Beans & Lentils

Prenatal Power

If you're not a big meat eater, beans and lentils are great sources of protein and iron, as well as folate, fiber and calcium.

And beans (especially baked) are bursting with zinc.

Why they're good for the both of you.

Beans boast a bunch of baby and Mom friendly minerals found in animal products.

Beans are rich in zinc, an essential mineral that's linked to a lower risk for preterm delivery, low birth-weight and prolonged labor.

Lean Meat

Prenatal Power

You know it's a great source of protein, but lean beef and pork are also packed with iron and B-vitamins.

Why it's good for the both of you.

Your body needs a lot more protein now (about 25% extra grams per day) to help the fetus grow and to ensure proper muscle development.

Same goes for iron (25% more).

Not getting enough can impair your baby's growth and increase the risk for preterm delivery and low birth weight.

During pregnancy, your blood volume increases, so you'll need to up your iron intake (approx 27 mg. per day).

Bonus:

Meat provides a heavy dose of vitamin-B6 (helps baby's tissue and brain growth, while easing Mom's morning sickness) and vitamin B-12 (helps to maintain healthy nerves and red blood cells.

Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice

Prenatal Power

Down a glass of O.J., in the morning to top the tank with folate, potassium, and of course, vitamin-C.

Why it's good for the both of you.

Folate and folic acid is a necessary nutrient for preventing certain birth defects early in pregnancy and for ensuring a healthy pregnancy onwards, so strive for 600 mcg., per day.

The potassium in O.J. is important for keeping your muscle function, metabolism and overall health in check.

Like iron, pregnant women need to consume more potassium because of their expanding blood volume.

We know orange juice is a good source of vitamin-C, which, in addition to fighting colds, helps your body better absorb iron and keeps your and your baby's teeth and bones in good health.

Bonus:

If you do go for store bought O.J., opt for that which is fortified with vitamin-D, which increases blood circulation in the placenta and aids in calcium absorption so that your baby will have stronger bones.

Yogurt

Prenatal Power

Plain yogurt contains more calcium than milk!

Plus, it's got essential bone-building nutrients, including protein, b-vitamins and zinc.

Why it's good for the both of you.

Calcium is essential for keeping your bones and teeth healthy and helping your baby to develop theirs, and skimping on this key nutrient could put you both at risk.

Expectant Moms should get at least three servings of calcium a day to reduce the risk of low birth-weight and preterm delivery.

If your calcium count is coming up short, your body will take the calcium your baby needs from your bones, putting you at greater risk for osteoporosis later on.

Bonus:

Snack on Greek yogurt topped with fruit for double the protein and fiber.

Oatmeal

Prenatal Power

Oats are filled with fiber, protein and vitamin-B6.

Why it's good for the both of you.

Start your day with a nice bowl of steaming oatmeal.

Whole grains are great for keeping your energy levels up, especially if morning sickness has you feeling a bit drained.

Plus, all that fiber will help with another pregnancy pleasantry; constipation.

The benefits don't stop with Mom.

This convenient breakfast (instant is good too!) also contains protein and vitamin-B6, both of which are important for baby's development.

Bonus:

Look for a variety that's fortified with iron, B-vitamins and folic acid.

Leafy Greens

Prenatal Power

Chock-full of antioxidants and nutrients, dark=green vegetables, including spinach, asparagus, broccoli and kale, should really be on anyone's plate.

Why they're good for the both of you.

These super foods are especially important for moms-to-be and their developing babies.

In addition to all the antioxidants, leafy greens supply calcium, potassium, fiber, folate and another important nutrient, vitamin-A.

Because of it's role in helping baby's eyesight develop and aiding in bone and skin growth, it's important for Mom's to eat vitamin-A filled foods as well.

No midnight cravings for spinach or asparagus?

Oranges are a great source as well.

Salmon

Prenatal Power

This oily fish is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids and protein.

Why it's good for the both of you.

The omega-3 fatty acids (DHA & EPA) in fish help your baby's brain to develop, and higher levels of DHA in newborns have even been associated with higher IQ levels, advanced motor skills and fewer neurological problems later on.

Omega-3's are good for the development of your baby's eyes, and salmon is a great source of lean protein for Mom!

Concerned about seafood?

Salmon is low in mercury and considered safe for expectant Mom's, but limit your intake to two servings of six ounces or less each week to be safe.

Not into fish?

Nosh on walnuts and almonds.

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