Your Pregnancy Diet Plan: The First Trimester
When you first discover you are having a baby, your pregnancy diet plan kicks into full gear. If you are like most women, you’ll find that even if you were already planning to conceive, there are still many aspects of your diet and lifestyle that need fine tuning.
You may also find you are suffering from pregnancy-induced symptoms–most commonly morning sickness–during this first three months of pregnancy. So how can you eat well, maintain a healthy lifestyle, and deal with nausea first thing in the morning?
The best advice is to take everything step by step and implement changes as best you can. Following is a basic guide to the changes you should begin making for your pregnancy diet plan.
How to Deal with Morning Sickness
Morning sickness may be the first sign you have that you are indeed pregnant. Some women have intensive morning sickness throughout their entire pregnancy. Other women never experience a moment of nausea.
The most common type of morning sickness begins in the first trimester but ends by the second trimester, and lasts only through the morning hours. It’s caused by hormonal changes and if your nausea is very severe, your OB/GYN can prescribe a medication to help you manage your symptoms.
For a natural remedy, try taking ginger. The best way to do so is to slice gingerroot up and boil the pieces for a tea. Or you can add ginger slices to chicken broth and sip slowly throughout the day. Try to avoid ginger ale, which is full of sugar, high fructose corn syrup, or artificial sweeteners.
Changing and Supplementing Your Pregnancy Diet Plan
During these first three months, you should begin taking a prenatal vitamin, if you haven’t already started, and you should begin increasing your intake of Omega-3 fatty acids as part of your pregnancy diet plan.
You should be taking 250mg of Omega-3s throughout your pregnancy, though it’s most crucial to ingest Omega-3s during these first few months. Most women rely upon a fish oil supplement but you can also add Omega-3s to your diet by eating leafy greens, walnuts, flaxseed oil, and organic eggs.
Other foods to eat while pregnant that contain Omega-3s include limited amounts of low-mercury seafood that contains high levels of Omega-3s, such as salmon, sardines, and anchovies.
Also during this time, you should increase your intake of protein, as it contains amino acids, minerals, and vitamins that are necessary for the health and development of your baby. Protein can also help to quell nausea, so try to have a protein snack before bed to help ease morning sickness the next day.
Eliminating Foods from Your Pregnancy Diet Plan
During these first three months of pregnancy, you are probably trying to get rid of any bad dietary habits you’ve developed, to help keep your baby well-nourished and free from harm. You may suddenly need to change medications, and will likely eliminate over-the-counter (OTC) medications from your life completely during the next nine months.
If you enjoy the occasional drink, you will need to abstain from alcohol, and if you smoke, you should cut your habit—be sure to consult with a physician about how to do this properly. If you are addicted to caffeine, begin stepping down your consumption incrementally rather than choosing to go cold turkey. By slowly decreasing your intake of caffeine, you can avoid major detox symptoms that could make you really sick.
The important thing is to make decisive steps to change your diet, but not put yourself in a situation where ceasing a habit can cause a great deal of harm to yourself or your baby. Try to change your pregnancy diet in small increments and seek the assistance of your OB/GYN whenever you have questions or need help.
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