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Nourish the Tree, Food and Pregnancy

Updated: Apr 1, 2019


Maternal nutrition and lifestyle choices are major influences on both mommy and babies health. A malnourished womb is more likely to experience pregnancy related complications and give birth to babies in poor health.

Fortunately, nutrition is within our control, and easy to maintain once we have all the knowledge we need.

Some of the effect's malnutrition has on the pregnant mother are:

  • complicated labor

  • low weight of mother at time of birth

  • death due to bleeding, and

  • poor recovery after birth.

For the baby malnutrition leads to:

  • growth retardation in the womb

  • low birth weight

  • birth defects

  • premature birth

  • miscarriages, and still birth.

It's also important to know that the health and nutrition of the pregnant mother influences the quality of life, the fetus will experience outside of the womb. Those include, but are not reduced to developing chronic disease such as cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, diabetes mellitus, obesity, and osteoporosis.

I read once, “disease isn't hereditary, habits are”, and pregnancy is a great time to think of some of those habits and alter them for both mommy and baby.

I wish I could just whip up a smoothie with everything pregnant mommies need in it, but that just wouldn’t be possible. Or would it? Until then, even during pregnancy the general rules for eating healthy still apply.

  • Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables

  • whole grains

  • lean protein

  • and healthy fats.

There are a few things you want to concentrate on while pregnant, those are

  • folate acid

  • calcium

  • vitamin D

  • protein

  • and iron.

All of these are fundamental to babies growth and the mother’s health. 

Here's why!

Folic Acid, is a B vitamin. It is mostly found in cereals but can be found in lentils, beans, and almonds. Folic acid is vital because it plays an important role in the production of red blood cells. Even more it helps your babies neural tube develop into their brain and spinal cord. 

Calcium absorption nearly doubles early in pregnancy. The mineral is being stored in the bones of the mother until needed. Calcium is in dark leafy greens, molasses, and sesame seeds. It has many benefits for the body, in addition to strong bones and teeth, it also aids in the clotting of blood which is connected to bleeding during labor. It helps with muscles and nerve functions, and the regulation of the heartbeat. During the third trimester skeletal growth for the fetus is at its highest. If enough calcium hasn't been stored the baby will start to take from the mother. Leading to an increase risk of osteoporosis later in the mom's life.

Calcium and Vitamin D go hand in hand. Both needed for the development of bones and teeth, Vitamin D is necessary for the absorption and metabolism of Calcium. The vitamin also plays a part in the immunity of the mother and healthy cell division. You can easily get some vitamin D by simply walking out side, sunshine is one of its main sources. It is also in, fortified milk, and cereal.

Protein is the vital building block needed for babies' skin, muscles, hair, and bones. Like calcium, if protein is not available to baby through food it will began to be taken from the mother. Leaving her feeling drained and tissue health could be at risk. It is very crucial that a vegetarian or vegan pregnant woman make certain that their protein intake is healthy for them and the baby. Some non-meat based protein sources include, chickpeas, lentils, beans, spinach, broccoli. 

Finally, Iron. Iron is used in the production of more blood. Found in Dark chocolate, spinach, pumpkin seeds, and eggs, the consumption of iron will reduce the risk of anemia, a blood deficiency that could leave a mom feeling cold and tired. Iron helps in the movement of oxygen from your lungs to your body, then to the baby's body. 

After discussing the important things needed in food for the development of the baby and health of mother, its only right to touch on the importance of water.

The fetus is surrounded by amniotic fluid inside the womb.

That fluid is water based.

To keep mother from getting dehydrated plenty of water is needed.

Instead of your recommended eights cups of water during pregnancy that amount has raised to 12 glasses a day.

This water will help with:

  • morning sickness

  • urinary tract infections

  • constipation

  • absorption of vitamins and nutrients

  • and regulate body temperature.

You can manage your dehydration levels by looking at your urine, the lighter or less yellow, the better. Even before pregnancy the importance of proper nutrition is needed for the maintenance of normal body fat, hormone levels, and fertility.

While pregnant, your maintaining for two. As I have said, why not choose this time to make life time changes for yourself.

A seed is only as good as the tree from which it falls. Let’s start feeding the tree, the right way. 
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