Week 21: Pregnancy nutrition

By Published On: June 3rd, 2014

While reading my weekly email about baby’s growth and new […]

This belly is only going to get bigger. I'm working hard to make sure it stays in the healthy range!

This belly is only going to get bigger. I’m working hard to make sure it stays in the healthy range!

While reading my weekly email about baby’s growth and new milestones last week, I read an interesting fact I haven’t been able to get out of my mind. It said that the baby can now taste the foods I eat via consumption of amniotic fluid, so I should watch what I eat because I am starting to shape our baby’s taste buds with my own diet. Now is the time to start encouraging her to like healthy foods and develop a taste for vegetables, it said. My immediate reaction: Yeah, right. Then how come there are no toddlers running around asking their parents for pickles and peanut butter? 
My diet isn’t completely horrible. I do eat a lot of salad and plenty of fruit, but the more I thought about it, the guiltier I started to feel for the pizza I’ve been eating with abandon and the late night ice cream sundaes. I’ve started to seriously consider the ramifications my diet might have on our baby, and I’ve had a major change of heart. My conclusion is that, like most things in life, I need to start incorporating more balance into my diet. Here are a few swaps I’ve made in the last week that I’m working to incorporate even further into the next 20 weeks.
  • Skip the carb-laden breakfast of waffles or cereal and go for a protein-packed fruit smoothie. I’ve been making a green smoothie with unsweetened almond milk, organic flaxseed, baby spinach and frozen strawberries each morning. It’s really filling and energizing!
  • Nix granola bars as a snack. I don’t know about you, but I never feel full from granola bars! I think like they add a lot of unnecessary sugar and processed junk into my diet. I’ve begun to pack vanilla greek yogurt with a handful of real granola and fresh fruit, such as organic raspberries and strawberries, and it’s so much tastier and nutrient-rich.
  • Reduce salt at dinner. A lot of the seasonings I typically use without a second thought on chicken and vegetables are just salt in disguise. I realized that if I want to promote a healthier pregnancy, I have to lay off the salt. One night this week, I oven baked chicken with just a sprinkle of pepper and garlic. It still had great flavor, and it didn’t cause me to swell up like a balloon!
  • Make dessert a once a week treat. As I continue to gain weight, my husband is on a mission to lose weight. One way that he is cutting calories is by asking me to not buy ice cream at the grocery store anymore. Having it in the house is way too tempting! We started a new tradition of “fro-yo Sundays,” designating one day a week for an indulgence in dessert, instead of reaching for a treat every night after dinner.

These are just a few of the things I’ve started doing to have a consciously healthier pregnancy. How balanced is your pregnancy diet?