Pregnancy is surely a time of joy but it is also the time to go healthy for the sake of your baby. We understand that no one likes a plate full of bland vegetables and healthy foods. But, you must keep in mind that a healthy first trimester diet plan is for your baby’s benefit only.
You might be already wondering how to stay healthy throughout the pregnancy and get the most out of what you eat. Or you might even be wondering what I am eating right now or will be eating in the future, is it even right or not for my baby?
That is why we have divided your health journey into three trimesters. It will make things easier for you to remember and follow a healthy diet in the first trimester with utmost dedication.
Before breaking into the list of food to eat in the first trimester, let’s break a myth first. An infamous myth gliding over the internet is that during pregnancy, you need to eat food sufficient for 2 persons. But, this is not true. You only need additional 300 calories to meet the nutrient requirement of the baby.
Let’s say previously you were consuming 1500 calories. Now, this number will bring your calorie intake in the first trimester from 1500 to 1800 calories. Similarly, the calorie intake will increase by 300 calories in each trimester. Just make sure that you eat only healthy and nutritious food.
Pregnancy is a long journey and you will definitely need tons of nutrients for the entire journey. However, right now we will talk about the nutrients necessary for the diet in the first trimester.
Folic Acid: It is an essential micronutrient in the first trimester. That’s because high levels of folic acid prevent neural tube defects. The recommended intake of folic acid is 600 micrograms per day and it is found in oranges, strawberries, leafy vegetables, nuts, cauliflower, and kidney beans.
Calcium: Calcium is crucial for your baby’s developing teeth and bones. The recommended daily intake is 1000 milligrams per day because your baby’s only supply of calcium is you. And too little calcium can cause osteoporosis in the baby’s later life.
Iron: Make sure you are getting enough iron by consuming 27 milligrams per day. It is necessary cause your body uses more iron to make more blood to supply oxygen to the baby. Spinach is a good option for consuming iron but it’s a challenge to reach 27 milligrams per day by only consuming foods. You might wanna take the help of iron tablets.
Vitamin C: Foods rich in vitamin C like oranges, broccoli, and strawberries are helpful in the bone and tissue development of your growing baby. Vitamin C also helps in iron absorption. For both these reasons, you must aim for 85 milligrams per day.
Potassium: When potassium combines with sodium, it helps your body to maintain proper fluid balance and also helps in regulating blood pressure. The recommended intake is 2900 milligrams per day through multiple sources like tablets and foods like bananas, apricots, etc.
As per experts, the consumption of a well-balanced diet in the first trimester combined with at least 30 minutes of exercise daily is the key to a healthy pregnancy. Generally, yoga for pregnant women is a safe exercise option.
Now, let’s get back to the first trimester diet plan and these are the food items you should include in your diet for well-balanced nutrition:
It is important to have varieties of vegetables in your meal. Your dish should be full of colors. For a healthy diet in the first trimester, you can include spinach as it is rich in folic acid, and broccoli rich in zinc, which helps in developing the baby's blood cells.
Many dietitians recommend eating tomatoes, sweet potatoes, peas, etc., in the first trimester.
For pregnant women, it is recommended to have at least 3-4 servings of fruits daily. Fruits with citrus quality are a good source of folic acid like grapefruit, oranges, kiwi, etc.
Some other fruits that you can also include in your diet are bananas, avocados, apples, watermelons, pomegranates, mangoes, and a lot more to have a healthy baby.
You can include whole grains in your first-trimester diet plans like wheat, corn, millet, and rice. Grains provide energy to babies inside the womb and help in developing the placenta.
Include protein-rich food in your pregnancy diet first trimester as it helps to develop the baby's brain and other organs. Eat two to three servings of protein-rich foods daily when you’re in the first trimester and even after.
There are many options for you in the dairy product that you may consume during the first trimester of pregnancy. You may get confused between the options available.
Still, if you want the best option, go for cottage cheese; it is a good source of protein and calcium, helpful for your unborn baby's bones and muscle development.
Having cravings during pregnancy is normal, but to satisfy your cravings, you must not keep your health aside and eat everything you want to fulfill the cravings.
Some foods that should not be eaten during the first trimester of pregnancy are papaya, pineapple, black grapes, eggplant, old cooked food, unwashed fruits and vegetables, caffeine, eggs, junk food, and high-sugar food.
The first trimester of your pregnancy is the most important time for you and your little one as their organs start developing in the first three months, so it's important to eat healthily and maintain a proper first trimester diet plan. During this period, there is also a chance that you might have some abnormalities.
To avoid uncertainty in pregnancy, stay active, and positive and focus on what you eat daily as a part of your first trimester diet plan. To have a stress-free and healthy pregnancy, download the Krishna Coming Garbh Sanskar mobile app.
Q1. What are the healthiest foods to eat during the first trimester?
Including rich protein meals in the first-trimester diet plan, such as peanuts, almonds, lentils, chickpeas, millets, and beans, boosts your baby's healthy brain and heart development. Don’t forget to follow it!
Q2. How many times should I eat in a day while pregnant?
To ensure that you and your baby's nutritional needs are fulfilled, eat three small yet balanced meals and three light snacks throughout the day.
Q3. What should not be eaten during the first trimester of pregnancy in India?
Seafood, brinjal, unpasteurized milk, and its products, sesame seeds, papaya, Ajinomoto, pineapple, fennel, fenugreek seeds, refined flour (maida) products, and grapes are strictly prohibited foods to eat during the first trimester.