for you and your baby, including some interesting facts and useful tips about
these nutritious and delicious foods!
for a snack to support healthy energy levels that is also rich in the heart-healthy
monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats important in baby’s cognitive and
visual development? Go nuts for almonds!
In a one-ounce serving of almonds
(approximately 20-25 almonds), you can also find a good amount of protein,
fiber, and the minerals calcium and magnesium. Calcium and magnesium are
critical components of strong bones and teeth, and are also intricately
involved in normal nerve, muscle and cardiac function. Just make sure you eat
almonds with the skin on – the skin contains powerful antioxidant compounds and
regularity and equipped with a good balance of key minerals – including calcium
for strong bones, iron for healthy red blood cells and oxygen transport, and
potassium for electrolyte and fluid balance. What’s more, they offer powerful
and protective antioxidant capacity important for fighting off oxidative damage
and keeping cells healthy. With their sweet taste, dates are a wonderful alternative
to added sugars in many recipes – get clever with salad dressings, cereals,
desserts, trail mix, pasta, appetizers, and much more. Look for dates that are
shiny, uniform in color and completely intact.
Pumpkin seeds are just
too good to reserve for a single holiday in October! Noshing on these
seeds will provide you with high quality protein, healthy mono- and polyunsaturated
fats and the minerals copper, magnesium, and zinc. For mom, the healthy fats in
pumpkin seeds provide energy and may support healthy cholesterol levels and
overall heart health. At the same time, baby can reap the cognitive and
vision-related benefits. Lastly, the rich mineral content of these seeds
promote numerous activities in the body from antioxidant function, to energy
production, to immune support, and various structural roles related to cell
membranes, bones and connective tissues.
potassium and fiber in sweet potatoes may help! Potassium maintains normal
fluid balance in the body, while fiber—with adequate fluids—supports healthy
digestion and intestinal regularity. Sweet potatoes are also high in vitamins A
and C, which are antioxidant nutrients that support optimal eye and immune
health. Did we mention that these fabulous root vegetables are fat-free,
cholesterol-free and very low in sodium?
to any diet. So fantastic, the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United
Nations declared the year 2013 as the International Year of Quinoa. What’s so
special about this grain-like seed? It
is rich in quality protein, fiber, folate, phosphorus and magnesium – equating
to major benefits for growth and development, digestive regularity, and bone
metabolism! A cooked cup of quinoa provides 8 grams of quality protein, 5 g of
fiber, and 19%, 30% and 28% of the Daily Value for folate, magnesium and
minerals calcium, phosphorus and manganese as well as fiber and healthy omega-3
fatty acids. The powerful mineral trio promotes healthy bone development of
both mom & baby, while the rich supply of fiber helps mom maintain good
digestive regularity. Add the gift of
healthy fats, and this seed gives quinoa some competition! Chia seeds are
easily digested and do not need to be ground in order to be consumed.
of the nutrients packed within a mango provide awesome benefits for both mom
and baby, during pregnancy and postpartum. This tropical fruit provides
you with dietary fiber, vitamins A, C, and B6, and contains natural enzymes and
antioxidants that have digestive and protective benefits. So while
moments of pregnancy and even parenthood may seem far from paradise, just close
your eyes, picture a beach and grab a mango!
with nutritious goodness, spinach packs tons of key nutrients. In fact, 100
grams of this leafy green (which is a little more than three cups of raw
spinach and just over a half a cup of cooked spinach) contains almost all of
the essential vitamins and minerals. For an expecting mom or a
mom-on-the-go, this is great news as these nutrients are critical for mom and
baby during and after pregnancy! Choose organic spinach from your grocery store
or local farmers market. Spinach is highly susceptible to pesticide spraying so
opt for the pesticide-free variety.
is a hearty, flavorful and fantastically nutritious leafy green that provides
wholesome goodness for the whole body!
The rich supply of antioxidant vitamins A and C support mom and baby’s
immune, vision and skin health, while vitamin K promotes strong bones and
normal blood clotting. Experts agree that kale is surely a food to eat and
enjoy during pregnancy, and a leafy green to incorporate in the usual diets of
kids and adults alike. Kale is also very versatile – try layering it in
lasagna, tossing it into stews and soups, using it as the base of a winter
salad, adding it as a pizza topping or simply steaming! Kale is also a great
green to juice or blend in a smoothie.
fats – the ‘good’ fats that support optimal growth and development of baby
while sustaining mom’s energy and nutritional needs. This fabulous oil also contains natural plant
based polyphenol compounds that offer both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory
benefits! Olive oil is graded based upon its degree of processing. You can find
extra virgin, virgin, refined and pure olive oil. Extra virgin is the least
processed, obtained from the original pressing of the olives, and is known for
its delicate flavor and strongest health benefits. Experts recommend purchasing
and consuming extra virgin olive oil over all the other varieties for these
bittersweet flavor and provides key vitamins and minerals especially important
during the perinatal period. Iron for
oxygen transport, vitamin B6 for a healthy nervous system and calcium for
strong bones are just a few of the nutrients tucked away within this healthful
and natural sweetener. Blackstrap molasses pairs well with beans, gingerbread
cookies and breads, soups, sausage patties, stews, basted meats, smoothies,
granola and steak sauces. Although its distinct flavor may not mix in all
recipes, it’s worth getting creative in the kitchen and swapping out
alternative sweeteners for this naturally sweet and nutritious syrup! Look for
organic, unsulphured blackstrap molasses.
life hands you lemons…pucker up!! Lemons are an excellent source of vitamin C,
a water-soluble antioxidant vitamin that is essential to a strong immune
system, supports key structural functions throughout the body, and enhances the
body’s ability to absorb non-heme iron found primarily in plant-based foods! Considering
the increased iron needs associated with pregnancy, it surely makes sense to
include vitamin C rich foods like lemons in the diet—for both mom and
baby. To maximize the juice of a lemon for squeezing, roll it around on a hard
surface before slicing open.
is a spicy, hot, zesty and aromatic herb alive with well-known therapeutic
properties. Aside from being a natural digestive health aid, ginger has
become an infamous remedy for the characteristic symptoms of early
pregnancy—nausea and vomiting. Studies suggest 1 gram per day (taken in divided
doses) of ginger root as an efficacious amount for relieving pregnancy-induced
nausea and vomiting as well as menstrual discomfort. Be sure to chat with your
primary care physician if choosing to take supplemental ginger if pregnant or
fiber for digestive health, cranberries also contain an array of protective
plant-based nutrients known as phytonutrients.
Select phytonutrients arm cranberries with the ability to promote a
healthy urinary tract by inhibiting the adherence of harmful bacteria to the
urinary tract walls. The skin and flesh of the cranberry account for the vast
majority of the fruit’s phytonutrient content, so aim for whole cranberries. Bring
on the protective benefits of this tart fruit!
those who chose to incorporate whole grains into your diet, oats are an
excellent choice. The protein and fiber
in oats keep mom energized and full, while vitamin B1 and the minerals
manganese, zinc and magnesium support a healthy metabolism, immune system and
skeleton! Oats are naturally gluten-free, but sometimes come in contact with
gluten when cultivated. If following a gluten-free diet, be sure you select
pure oat products that claim 100% gluten-free on the label.
find all of these nutritious and delicious foods? Look inside a