The pregnancy diaries

Dear Diary,

lovingmepregnancydiariesI attended my first nutritional class on Saturday, May 25th, which was very interesting and informative; the topics we dealt with were:

1) Elements of nutrition (sources and benefits of protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals).

What role each play in pregnancy and postpartum.

2) What is good nutrition

3) Taste the Rainbow (which was a group activity)

Benefits of Protein

Protein is the cover girl of nutrients these days, since you know weight-loss diets are downright dangerous for expectant moms and their babies, you need to appreciate protein during pregnancy on a deeper level — for the brain power behind the beauty.

Protein is made up of the amino acids that build your baby’s adorable face and every cell below it. At 37 weeks pregnant, your baby’s brain, in particular, needs these raw materials to transform itself into the wondrous organ that will help your baby breathe, walk and talk. During your pregnancy, you need three servings of protein every day (the equivalent of about 75 grams).

Most people have no trouble reaching this goal (especially if they’ve spent any time on the low-carb bandwagon), although if you’re having a vegetarian you may have to work a little harder to find good sources of protein. Getting your full protein quota is never more important than it is during this final trimester, when your baby’s brain is developing fast and furiously — but it’s also a great time to up your intake of good protein sources that are extra high in omega-3 fatty acids, like DHA (another must-have nutrient when it comes to baby brains — plus, one that’s known to lower your risk of postpartum depression). I get my protein from these foods, lean meat, fish, eggs and milk etc.

Benefits of Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are the source of most of your body’s energy. Carbohydrates are classified as sugars or starches. Obviously, starch based carbohydrates such as pasta, potatoes and grains are healthier than sugar based ones.

Starch based carbohydrates also release their energy more slowly giving you a more sustained source of energy. Many doctors feel that calories earned from eating carbohydrates should form about 60 per cent of your diet.

Ketones, which accumulate in your bloodstream if you are lacking in carbohydrates can harm the growth of your baby. So sufficient carbohydrate intake is important in preventing the formation of ketones.

Benefits of Fats

Fat is a vital component in helping to build cell walls, and contributes to the development of the fetal nervous system. Fat, however, contains twice as many calories as most protein and carbohydrate sources. High fat intake increases risk of heart disease and some cancers. You will notice your cholesterol levels increase by up to 25 per cent during your pregnancy which is due to your body’s increased hormone production.

So don’t measure your cholesterol, and don’t worry about meeting a minimum Recommended Daily Amount (RDA) fat intake, because most of us eat too much fat as it is! When you do eat fats, try and eat fats, which are beneficial, particularly the Omega 3 fatty acids that are found in oily fish.

Benefits of vitamins and minerals

Vitamins and minerals help give your body the nutrients it needs to stay healthy and repair any damages. You can get most vitamins by eating healthy foods that include:

∑ Fruits

∑ Vegetables

∑ Whole-grain breads and pastas

∑ Milk products

∑ Beans

∑ Lean red meat

∑ Poultry

∑ Fish that is low in mercury

Folic acid is one of the nutrients included in most prenatal vitamins.

Folic acid helps prevent birth defects of the brain and spinal cord. It may also protect the pregnant woman against cancer and stroke.

Pregnant women should get 600 micrograms of folic acid every day from food and supplements.

Most prenatal vitamins contain 600-1,000 micrograms of folic acid.

Iron is another important nutrient for pregnant women. It also can be found in prenatal vitamins.

Iron helps the muscles in both mother and baby develop.

It helps prevent anemia, a condition in which a woman’s red blood cells are too small and too few. Red blood cells carry oxygen around your body and to your baby.

Iron can also lower the risk of pre-term birth and low birth weight.

Calcium, also available in prenatal vitamins, helps keep bones and teeth strong for you and your baby.

Calcium helps the nervous, muscular and circulatory systems stay healthy.

When a pregnant woman doesn’t get enough calcium from the foods she eats, the body takes the calcium from her bones to give it to her growing baby.

Having less calcium in the bones can cause serious health conditions later in life, such as osteoporosis. In osteoporosis, the bones thin, and the person is at increased risk of bone breaks.

Taste The Rainbow

This topic I enjoyed Renee asked everyone to come up to the board where she was writing the notes and asked us to write down our favourite colour along with a fruit and vegetable which matched that colour. My colour was orange my fruit was tangerine and my vegetable was carrots. We then went through our food plans which we recorded from Wednesday- Friday. Latoya one of the members of class stood up and read hers out loud to the class and we offered recommendations etc.

I also attended the first stroller class on Sunday May 26th @ 5 p.m. it was awesome I wish all of our classes were on the boardwalk the change of scenery, the wind and waves were so relaxing. The babies joined us for this class in their strollers and they too really enjoyed it they didn’t fuss or anything one of them even fell asleep. We did some power walking which involved the mummies pushing the strollers and walking at a brisk pace. We sang some nursery rhymes while doing some other exercises which was different and fun. Plan to attend the next stroller class as well can’t wait!!!! J

Excited Mummy To Be

Jannelle .A. Shallow

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