Throughout my pregnancy many people have asked me if I’ve changed my diet. Sorry to disappoint, but than a few crazy cravings at the beginning (Honey Nut Cheerios and popsicles) and no alcohol or unpasteurized foods, my diet has stayed the same.
Pregnant or not, we should always incorporate a variety of healthy, whole foods into our daily diet.
On an average day, my diet mainly consists of raw fruits & veggies, healthy fats, lean protein (organic/free-from chicken, eggs & msc-certified fish), whole grains (brown rice pasta, quinoa) & healthy carbs (sweet potatoes, squash), and legumes. I consume dairy (Greek yogurt), red meat (organic/free-from pork & beef) and treats (dark chocolate, popcorn, healthy cookies, pizza) in moderation.
Here’s what an average day of eating looks like for me:
- Berries or half a grapefruit within 30 minutes of getting up
- 3x per week (walking on the treadmill, light upper body weights)
My exercise routine has been the biggest change for me. I used to workout for 30 minutes, 4-5 times per week, and really focus on keeping my heart rate up while jogging or weight training. When you’re pregnant it’s important that you don’t get your heart rate up too high or you risk depriving the baby of blood & oxygen. Especially in my 2nd & 3rd trimesters I’ve had to really scale back. Exercise during pregnancy is personal, but it’s important that you listen to your body, and don’t introduce anything new that you didn’t do prior to getting pregnant.
- Green smoothie with lots of healthy fats, protein & fibre! (Half banana, blueberries, spinach, flax, hemp, chia seeds, tigernuts, Greek yogurt, coconut oil, Progressive VegEssential all-in-one protein powder, almond milk and OJ)
- 1 cup of organic coffee
- Either a homemade muffin with half a banana or ¾ cup plain Greek yogurt with homemade granola or homemade cereal
- 1 organic boiled egg on sprouted toast with white cheddar cheese and avocado
- Raw veggies (organic baby carrots, snap peas, cucumber or peppers)
- 1 boiled egg with 2 cups organic roasted red pepper soup, and Mary’s crackers with white cheddar cheese
- Leftovers from dinner
- Brown rice cake with natural peanut butter, raisins, cacao nibs & drizzle of honey
- Apple with almonds & dried apricots or Mary’s crackers with nut butter
- Healthy granola bar
- Raw veggies (organic baby carrots, snap peas, cucumber & peppers)
- Organic roast chicken with spinach salad and sweet potato fries
- Rainbow trout or cod with quinoa salad
- 2 squares of Zazubean dark chocolate and dates
Other than consuming more calories (350 – 450 per day starting in my 2nd trimester) I’ve pretty much stuck to my regular diet. There are specific vitamins, minerals and healthy fats that are particularly important to the development of a baby like folic acid, iron, calcium and omega-3, but we should be consuming those anyways.
In terms of supplements, prior to getting pregnant I would take an omega-3, vitamin D and probiotic. Now that I’m pregnant I also take a prenatal vitamin (Jamieson makes a good one that has no artificial dye in it) and calcium citrate.
When you’re pregnant it’s also important to make sure you’re getting enough protein, but you should be incorporating protein at every meal and snack anyways. Lean protein is so important for muscle repair, the health of our cells, and because our body needs to work harder to digest it, you can actually speed up your metabolism while eating protein-rich foods! Burn calories while you eat!
Why should it take growing another human to finally pay attention to your diet, and eat healthy? Your health is important too! Pregnant or not it’s important to incorporate a variety of healthy, whole foods into our diet everyday.
Male or female, young and old – we should all be eating like we’re pregnant!