Pregnancy involves a lot of changes to and an enormous strain on your body. Though the body is naturally prepared for this, a healthy body is stronger, more resilient and, therefore, better prepared for pregnancy. Along with sufficient exercise and sleep, a healthy diet is an important foundation for your health. Everything that you eat is converted and used in metabolic and cell division processes. Read our guide to how a healthy pregnancy diet can increase your chances of a healthy pregnancy.
It is especially important to ensure you have a healthy and balanced diet when you are trying to conceive. If the body is not provided with all the nutrients it requires, this has a significant impact on fertility. The body automatically reduces its ability to conceive as a result of an unhealthy diet to protect itself from the additional burdens caused by pregnancy.
To produce follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and female sex hormones such as oestrogen or progesterone, the body needs enough vitamin B. This vitamin group also includes folic acid. Natural folate is contained in foods such as green leafy vegetables and eggs. However, the concentration is fairly low, and the vitamin easily decomposes as soon as it comes into contact with water. For this reason, women trying to conceive are recommended to take artificially produced folic acid even before getting pregnant. The vitamin is also essential for cell division and supports the embryo’s all-important first cell division processes after fertilisation.
A shortage of iodine and iron is often not noticed immediately or not perceived as a deficiency symptom by those affected. However, if you are trying to have children, a lack of these trace elements can quickly have an effect on the development of the embryo. Iodine is essential for early childhood development and can be found in foods such as sea salt, sea fish or fortified cooking salt. An iron deficiency has an effect on your immune system and your energy levels. During pregnancy, the mother’s blood volume increases. And in this case, too, an iron deficiency is harmful to the health of both mother and child.
Healthy pregnancy diet: Here’s what to look out for
Varied: Make sure you plan a varied diet. This will make sure your body is sufficiently supplied with all the important vitamins and trace elements.
Lots of fresh ingredients: Fresh fruit and vegetables contain the most vitamins. Try to avoid processed food for the most part and prepare fresh ingredients carefully. Steaming is a great option to preserve nutrients while making raw vegetables easier to digest.
Get enough fluids: Drinking a lot of fluids is important – especially if you are trying to conceive. This ensures that all the metabolic processes in your body can be performed optimally. Water, unsweetened tea or diluted fruit juices are best.
Eat regularly: Now is the worst time to go on a diet. If the body regularly gets new energy, it doesn’t need to do any extra work to balance out any deficiencies.
Exceptions are allowed: Having a pizza or a few sweets every now and then is perfectly fine and won’t have a major impact on a healthy pregnancy diet. All that matters is that these foods remain the exception and your diet is otherwise balanced.