Important Nutrition tips during Pregnancy by Nutrition Consultant Kolkata

Pregnancy is considered to be one of the most beautiful phases of a woman’s life. During this phase, however, a woman goes through remarkable and quite explicable changes in her body. This teamed up with morning sickness and a few more problems, calls for a good pregnancy plan to combat all the problems. Proper nutrition and healthy lifestyle is the ultimate key for a healthy pregnancy.

This is one of the reasons why adopting a healthy maternity wellness programme is important. Here, we present important health and nutrition information for pregnant women to cope up beautifully with during all the three trimesters.

 Important Nutrition tips during Pregnancy by Nutrition Consultant Kolkata1st Trimester of Pregnancy

In the span of the first trimester, your body undergoes many hormonal and physical changes such as extreme tiredness, tender and swollen breasts, certain food cravings, mood swings, constipation, headache, etc.

What you need?

  • Folate-rich food: Folic acid or folate is important for the neural tube of the baby which is later transformed into the spinal cord and brain of the fetus later. Asparagus, spinach, brussels sprout, lentils, avocado, okra, peas, citrus fruits and beans are folate-rich foods.
  • Dairy products: Dairy products are enriched with protein, calcium, vitamin D, folic acids and healthy fats. That is why yogurt, hard cheese and milk are important to have during the first phase of pregnancy.
  • Whole grains: Whole grains are the rich sources of carbohydrate, vitamin B complex, dietary fibre and minerals like iron, selenium and magnesium. Brown rice, barley, bulgur wheat, whole wheat pasta or bread, oatmeal and millets are the common example of whole grains.
  • Nuts and seeds: Nuts and seeds are enriched with vitamins, flavonoids, proteins, dietary fibre and minerals. Intake of such foods throughout the pregnancy will help to keep the baby healthy.
  • Fruits and vegetables: Vegetables are an essential source of a wide range of nutrients for the growing baby. Eggplant, broccoli, drumstick, carrot, pumpkin and sweet potatoes are the common examples of friendly vegetables during pregnancy. Banana, pomegranate, guava, strawberry, apple, avocado and muskmelon are enriched with essential minerals, vitamins and antioxidants. These are essentially beneficial for the unborn babies.
  • Egg, meat and fish: Poultry products and eggs are the trusted sources of vitamin A, D, E, K, B2, B12, B6, and B5 proteins, minerals such as zinc, selenium, calcium and phosphorus. These components are important for fetus development. Fish is essential food during pregnancy as this is the best source of low fat and high protein rich food. Other than that, this also contains omega3 fatty acids, vitamin E, B2 and D and minerals like magnesium, calcium, potassium, zinc, phosphorus and iodine. Meat contains iron, protein, zinc and vitamin B. Addition of lean meat to the diet plan during pregnancy, will be beneficial for the growth of the fetus.

Beneficial diet tips:

2nd Trimester of Pregnancy

During the second trimester, a woman experiences several symptoms such as nausea and fatigue, abdominal expansion, darkening of the skin around your nipples, etc.

What you need?

  • Make sure to intake prenatal vitamins, especially folic acids.
  • Reduce eating junk food.
  • Add more fruits and vegetables to your regular diet.
  • Drink sufficient water.
  • Strictly follow the diet, suggested by the physician.
    • Protein

      During this trimester of pregnancy, the intake of protein should be 75 to 100gms per day. That will help to grow the mother's breast and uterus; brains and other tissues of the baby. Beans, nuts, lentils, cooked fish, lean meats, egg, tempeh and tofu are the protein-rich essential food items for this trimester of pregnancy.

    • Iron


      Sufficient iron intake will help to carry and balance the oxygen level within the body. During pregnancy, adequate intake of iron helps to maintain the uninterrupted flow of oxygen. That helps in the development of the baby during this trimester. Oatmeal, bread, whole grains, green vegetables, lentils, beans, breakfast cereals and nuts are the enriched sources of iron.

    • Folate

      400 to 800 mcg of folic acid or folate are essential to intake during this phase. Fortified cereals, cabbage, spinach, legumes, oranges and whole grains are the common source of Folate.

    • Calcium

      During this trimester of pregnancy, 1000 to 1300 mg of calcium need to take on a daily basis. This will help to develop the teeth and bones of the baby. This also helps in smooth functions of the circulatory system, nerves and muscles. Tofu, almond, white beans, broccoli, dairy products, sardines with bones and eggs are commonly known examples of calcium-rich food items.

      Beneficial diet tips:

      Other than these essential nutrients, the pregnant women need to have chia seeds and flax seeds for omega 3 fatty acids; cheese and mushrooms for vitamin D. Pregnant women need to have more water and fluid than those who are not pregnant. Water helps to develop the amniotic sac and placenta. To avoid a reduction in breast milk production and defects of neural tubes, the pregnant lady needs to take lots of water during the 2nd trimester of pregnancy.

      3rd trimester of pregnancy

      At this stage of pregnancy, the lady requires lots of energy to maintain their routine throughout the day. Additional intake of DHA and calcium are essential for the bones and brain growth of the fetus, during this phase. Vitamin D will improve the bone density of the fetus: intake of iron will help to increase the weight of the fetus; intake of adequate folic acid helps to develop the strong neural structure of the fetus; intake of sufficient vitamin helps in fetal growth and development of maternal tissues. The friendly foods for this trimester are stated below:

      What you need?

      • Vegetables and ham salad work as a thiamine booster. This helps to extract energy from food.
      • Fresh fruits are enriched with vitamin C and iron. This helps to maintain the proper functions of the placenta and develop a strong immune system during the 3rd trimester of pregnancy. The most effective fruits for this phase are banana, kiwis, melon and strawberries.
      • Chewing nuts and seeds during the third trimester are beneficial as they are enriched with proteins, thiamine and essential omega 3 fatty acid.
      • Ripe papaya, brussel sprouts and avocado salad are trusted source of vitamin E, C, K, fibres and potassium. These are essential in the diet plan during this stage of pregnancy.
      • Iron-rich foods, green smoothies and dairy products are essential to have in the 3rd trimester of pregnancy. These are the essential sources of important vitamins and minerals especially for the third trimester of pregnancy.
      Beneficial diet tips:
      • Take small and regular meals, never skip a meal
      • Drinks lots of fluids and water
      • Avoid alcohol, smoking and caffeinated beverages

      Vidhi Beri is CAPPA certified lactation and nutrition consultant in Kolkata that provides individualized maternity wellness programmes which include a highly personalized diet and fitness regime including counseling and necessary tips for a smooth pregnancy. A lot of women are now turning towards specialized programmes to get all the necessary help they can gather during this important phase. You can also book yourself an appointment. Just contact Vidhi Beri or visit her official website