Maintaining good nutrition before, during and after pregnancy is important for both you and your growing baby. Pregnancy places additional nutritional demands on your body and your need for certain nutrients such as protein, iron, folate, iodine and zinc are increased. It is important to eat a wide variety of foods from the five food groups to ensure that the nutritional requirements of both you and your baby are being met.
While your energy requirements will increase slightly in the second and third trimester it is not necessary or recommended to “eat for two”. During the first trimester your energy requirements remain similar to that of pre-pregnancy and typically no additional food serves are required. In your second and third trimesters you will most likely require additional energy to support your growing body and baby. These requirements can usually be met by adding an additional 2 gain and 1 meat or alternative serves to your daily intake (for example). These recommendations will vary from person to person depending on their individual circumstances. To ensure you are receiving adequate nutrition and managing a healthy weight gain during your pregnancy, it is a good idea to discuss your needs with your care provider.
Pregnancy is also a time when extra caution should be taken with food preparation and handling. Good hygiene practices can reduce the risk of bacterial infection and food poisoning which can cause significant risk to your growing baby. There are also a number of foods which should be avoided during pregnancy due to increased risk of contamination or high levels of potentially harmful substances.
For more information;
Australian Government Eat For Health – Healthy Eating During Your Pregnancy
Better Health Channel – Pregnancy and diet
Pregnancy Birth and Baby – Vitamins and supplements during pregnancy