Eating During Pregnancy – Eating for Two
Congratulations, then, you got to start eating for two… At least, this is what used to be strongly believed. Though “eating for two” is not medically advocated in the current millennium, yet, I can state with conviction that it is an “age old” adage used right royally as “eminent advise” to pregnant women by people across the globe. Pregnancy is by no means a self-attested license to eat for two, rather it is not necessary to eat for two primarily because the growing baby is of miniscule size and is definitely not comparable to the size of the adult. It goes without saying that the needs of this baby cannot be matched with that of the adult. The initial weeks of pregnancy is generally dominated by the most common discomforts such as Nausea, Vomiting, heartburn, acidity etc. which can be of varying intensities. The most prominent feature of going through a discomfort such as one of those mentioned is that the chances of following an appreciable schedule of eating healthy food is not only a challenge but in many cases, can be negligible, impractical too!!
With all this in place it is difficult to draw a route map for healthy eating though the standard recommendation for this trimester would be: eat healthy and drink healthy liquids when you can to the extent you can. “Force feeding” as a dictum of choice is not necessary since it is likely to worsen the scenario, making you vomit food or start hating the thought of even your favorite foods! But, who wants to listen to this truth? Many women get too stressed about not being able to eat, which is purely unnecessary.
Eating for one eighth above the normal needs is what is an ideal choice and this is what is medically recommended too. One eighth more is about 300 Calories more which could be nudged – in through two or three nutritious snacks taken in- between meals.
Good nutrition for a healthy pregnancy happens by including food from all categories – the Energy giving foods from Carbohydrates, Fats; the Protective Foods from Vitamins and Minerals; Body building foods –the Proteins. Though this is the nutritional classification of food groups based on their primordial function, yet, it is difficult to converge the roles in a simplified form. Each food is important to the body. There are overlapping functions between food groups, and in pregnancy all these have to be regarded with a lot of seriousness while planning the daily eating schedule.
This discussion on healthy eating does not omit the cravings or aversions for foods that pregnant women experience as a part of pregnancy. Especially in households where pregnant women are holding careers, a weekly once or twice “eating-out” is self-prescribed for being on a home kitchen based diet on the other days.