Nutrition During Pregnancy and Postpartum
● By Digital Media Director
By: Shannon Ward, Doula, SWD Meals & Delivery
These are important topics to put some thought and preparation into. There are some general nutritional guidelines to consider and there are many ways a family can prepare for these times.
Pregnant women should be consuming between 2,200 and 2,900 calories a day, gradually increasing the caloric intake as the baby grows. This should include at least the following servings in a day:
Two calcium-rich foods
Two extra-lean meats and legumes
At least five servings of water
Nursing moms should be taking in 2,200-2,700 calories a day, if you are nursing twins increase to 3,200 and for triplets consume closer to 3,700 calories a day. While nursing, it’s recommended to consume, at a minimum, servings of the following:
3-4 calcium-rich foods
3 extra-lean meats and legumes
At least eight servings of water
Your body needs protein, carbohydrates, and fats for energy. Great ingredients to include in your postpartum diet are: greens, yams, squash, carrots, beets, seaweed, lentils, raw almond butter, raw nuts and seeds, whole grains and healthy fats.
Things to limit or avoid are citrus fruits, too many dairy products, peanuts, beef, raw garlic, onion, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, potatoes, wheat/gluten, refined soy products, caffeine and chocolate.
Meal planning, including preparing freezer meals in advance, can significantly reduce a family’s stress about eating while mom is recovering. There are many wonderful websites that have endless recipes for you to try. Meal trains are also invaluable. Make a plan and share it with a few friends and family. They will prepare the meals you ask for and you will get to enjoy food that was lovingly prepared just for you by friends and family. There are online services that deliver food via postal carriers; the catch there is that someone would then need to prepare the food. There also are delivery services in the area to help your family in the postpartum period by delivering wholesome, nutritional meals directly to your door.