How should I eat while pregnant?

How should I eat while pregnant?

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There is a close relationship between the type of feeding before and during pregnancy and the birth weight, brain development and health of the baby. One of the six babies born every year in the world is born with a low birth weight below 2500 grams. One of the most important causes of low birth weight is nutritional disorders in pregnant women. During pregnancy, the need for energy and nutrients increases, but if this requirement is not met, the nutrients needed for the growth and development of the baby are supplied from the mother's own tissues. As a result, various diseases occur in the mother and resistance to infections decreases. It is normal for the expectant mother to gain 9-12 kg during pregnancy, but if the pregnancy is started with excess weight; It may also be possible to complete pregnancy by taking 7-8 kg. If twin babies are expected, it is normal for the expectant mother to weigh 17-22 kg. If pregnancy is started with excess weight, the calories taken in the first 3 months need not be increased too much. Not gaining weight during the first 3 months is not a problem, but it is not appropriate for the pregnancy to behave that may cause weight loss or to strictly limit weight gain. Appropriate weight gain will affect the birth weight of the baby; Improper limitation of the increase in body weight can cause the baby to be born with a low birth weight. In the second 3 months, pregnant women need to receive additional 300 calories per day to meet the increasing need. In particular, the body's needs increase after the 20th week of pregnancy, a period in which the baby begins to grow rapidly and the appetite increases. The fat accumulations that the body starts to store during this period are important in terms of the energy needed to meet the increasing energy requirement and breast milk release especially during lactation and protect the metabolism against the changes that occur. In the last 3 months, the weight continues to increase. This is the period when the baby grows faster. Swelling of feet and hands, frequent urination problems are normal, constipation complaints may increase. It should be kept in mind that the growth and development of the baby during pregnancy is the result of carrying the nutrients the mother receives with the placenta. The baby meets all energy and nutrient requirements from the mother's stores. Proteins; they are essential for the growth and development of the baby as well as the building blocks of the body. The recommended amount of protein to be taken daily for pregnant women is 60-70 grams. Consuming 3-4 servings of protein, milk, yoghurt, cheese and 120-150 grams of red meat, chicken or fish meet this need. For the brain development of the baby, fish must be consumed twice a week. Protein can only do its job if sufficient energy is available. If adequate energy intake is not provided, the body uses proteins to produce energy, not for cell production. With more energy requirements, the total amount of energy required per day is approximately 2500 calories. The biggest source of energy is carbohydrates because they can be converted into energy quickly and efficiently; bread, pasta, rice, bulgur and fruits are rich in carbohydrates. It should be avoided while consuming foods that provide calories but with low nutritional value. Since it cannot be effectively absorbed during pregnancy, it is difficult to provide sufficient iron requirement. Iron; eggs, meat and derivatives, dark green leafy vegetables, legumes and dried fruits. In order to meet the increased iron requirement during pregnancy, 20 mg of iron should be taken in addition to the normal requirement. It is important to include iron-rich foods (red meat, poultry, dried legumes, dried fruits, molasses, whole grains and enriched cereals, etc.) in the nutrition program during pregnancy. However, it is important to ensure absorption as well as iron intake, so it is necessary to take foods containing vitamin C, which will increase iron absorption, as well as iron-containing foods. For example; molasses and orange juice or molasses and kiwi can be eaten together. Consumption of salad with meals is also important for iron absorption. In addition, as it prevents the absorption of iron, tea and coffee should not be consumed with meals. Vitamin C helps the absorption of iron in plant-derived foods by the body. Vitamin C intake should be ensured as the need for iron doubles during pregnancy. Vitamin C also protects the body against infections; citrus fruits, tomatoes, broccoli, kiwi, rosehip and potatoes are rich. If sufficient calcium is taken during pregnancy, protection may be provided against future osteoporosis. Milk, yogurt, cheese, molasses, nuts, legumes and green leafy vegetables are rich sources of calcium. The daily calcium requirement during pregnancy and lactation is 1300 mg; a glass of milk provides 240 mg of calcium. Zinc has an important role in the baby's cell growth, brain development and body proteins. Red meat, seafood, milk, yoghurt and its derivatives, eggs and oilseeds are essential nutrients for zinc intake. Since the excess iron intake may prevent the absorption of zinc, it is necessary to use iron supplements at the dose recommended by the specialist. Folic acid requirement increases significantly during pregnancy and the daily requirement doubles. It is recommended that mothers should start using folic acid at least one month before conception. Sources of folic acid; dark green leafy vegetables, cauliflower, meat, milk, yogurt and its derivatives, eggs and cereals. Folic acid is lost by inadequate cooking methods rather than inadequate dietary intake. Therefore, cooking methods should be considered in the consumption of these nutrients which are the source of folic acid. Vitamin B12 needed for DNA synthesis during pregnancy; milk, yogurt, eggs, cheese and meat. Improper preparation and cooking of food prevents vitamin B12 from being used in the body. In terms of vitamin D required for the effectiveness of calcium in bones; In addition to balanced nutrition of the expectant mother, the benefit of sunlight is of great importance. Water, which is part of the body's transport system, transports nutrients to the body's cells and helps to remove some waste products from the body. Care should be taken to drink 8-10 glasses of water per day for the increased blood volume of the mother and the baby.

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