NUTRITION GUIDELINES FOR A HEALTHY PREGNANCY
This is a guideline for the EASIEST way to get all the nutrients and calories you need in pregnancy, especially a high level of protein and the calories you need to use the protein as building blocks rather than for fuel. There are other ways to do it if you are vegetarian, vegan, eat low fat, or don't like/tolerate a particular food. Please see the books referenced at the end for more details on substituting foods!
Every Day, you should have:
(examples given are one serving...Remember, each category is separate and you cannot fill two with one food - if you eat 3 oz of cheese, it can be a protein or a milk, but not both!)
- 1 Quart of Milk (4 8-oz Glasses) - in any form: milk, cheese, yogurt, even ice cream (although try to watch the fat!)
- 2 Eggs (cooked any way, in French toast, added to other foods...)
- 2 Servings of Protein Foods - 3 oz Meat or Fish, 1-1/2 Cup Beans, 3 oz Cheese, 1-1/2 Cup Tofu, etc
- 2 Servings Green Vegetables, preferably leafy (1/4-1/2 Cup)
- 4 Servings of Grains, preferably whole (Whole Wheat Bread -1 slice, Tortilla - 1, Brown Rice - 1 Cup, Oatmeal - 1 Cup)
- 1 Vitamin C Source - Citrus Fruit/Juice, Tomato, Cantaloupe, etc.
- 3 Fat Servings - 1 tsp. oil/butter/sour cream/mayonnaise (some reduced fat products let you use 1 Tbsp. instead...)
- 1 Serving Other Vegetables
Each Week, try to include:
- 5 Servings Yellow or Orange Colored Fruit/Vegetables
REMEMBER: Drink plenty of water/other fluids and salt your food to taste for safe blood volume!
If you substitute Proteins for Milk/Eggs, you must be sure your proteins are complete and that you get 80-100 grams of protein/day! You must also be sure to include all the elements of a well-balanced diet. While this plan is not the only way to get everything you need in pregnancy, it is one of the easiest ways!
Some recent research (from the Journal of Nurse-Midwifery) suggests that eating too much protein can lead to low birth weight babies! The number to stay below for a singleton pregnancy is 150g/day. The recommended amount of protein for a twin pregnancy is 130g/day, so even moms with twins can eat the recommended amount without worry that they are getting too much!
If you are following a vegetarian or vegan diet, please see the referenced books below for ways to substitute for meat/dairy/eggs on this diet.
For more information, please read the following books:
"What every pregnant woman should know" By Gail Brewer with Tom Brewer, MD
"The Brewer Medical Diet for Normal and High Risk Pregnancy" by Gail Brewer with Tom Brewer, MD