LiveWell Louisiana

Quick Tips for Eating Healthy During Pregnancy

Making smart food choices can help you have a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby.
September 9th, 2015 by: Julie Fortenberry

Don’t Forget Breakfast

Try fortified ready-to-eat or cooked breakfast cereals with fruit. Fortified cereals have added nutrients, like iron or calcium. If you are feeling sick, start with 100 percent whole-grain toast.

Eat Foods with Fiber

Choose vegetables and fruits, like green peas, spinach, pears and bananas; whole grains, like brown rice and oatmeal; and beans, like black beans and kidney beans.

Choose Healthy Snacks

Try low-fat or fat-free yogurt with fruit; or whole-grain crackers with fat-free or low-fat cheese.

Take a Daily Prenatal Vitamin with Iron and Folic Acid

Iron keeps your blood healthy. Folic acid helps prevent some birth defects. Talk with your doctor or nurse about a prenatal vitamin that’s right for you.

Eat 8 to 12 Ounces of Seafood Each Week

Fish and shellfish have nutrients that are good for your unborn baby. Eat a variety of seafood two or three times a week. A 3-ounce serving is about the size of a deck of cards. Healthy choices include: salmon; sardines; shrimp; canned light tuna; and white (albacore) tuna (but no more than 6 ounces per week).

Avoid fish that is high in mercury, especially swordfish, tilefish, shark and king mackerel. Mercury is a metal that can hurt your baby’s development.

Stay Away from Soft Cheeses and Lunch Meats

These foods may have bacteria in them that can hurt your baby. Don’t eat: raw (uncooked) fish, like sushi; soft cheeses, like feta, Brie and goat cheese; raw or rare (undercooked) meats; and lunch meats and hot dogs — unless they are heated until steaming hot.

Limit Caffeine and Alcohol.

Drink decaffeinated coffee or tea. Drink water or seltzer instead of soda. Don’t drink alcohol.