Now that you're pregnant, taking care of yourself has never been so important. Staying healthy during pregnancy depends on you, so it's crucial to arm yourself with information about the many ways to keep you and your baby as healthy as possible — this includes food safety. It is normal to be worried about what to eat, how much to eat, and what's acceptable. Here are 3 of the most common questions women ask during pregnancy:
1. Should salt be restricted during pregnancy?
No, salt can be eated, however, it is not necessary to add salt to food since a regular diet contains adequate amounts. Note: eliminating salt from your diet will not help to avoid edema (swelling).
2. What about vitamins?
Many women do not have sufficient reserves of iron and folic acid to meet the increased needs during pregnancy. This is why a supplement is recommended. A varied diet will help ensure an adequate intake of vitamins and minerals. Vitamin A (retinol) intake should not exceed 10,000 I.U. (3,300 RE) per day.
3. What are food cravings?
A food craving is a desire to eat a particular food product. This is common in the first 20 weeks of pregnancy. The craving can be for an exotic type of food or merely wanting to eat something more often than normal. Some cravings are for non-food items like clay or plaster. This is called "pica". Speak to a dietitian for nutrition assessment and counselling.
During pregnancy, from the first week to the 40th, it's important to take care of yourself in order to take care of your baby. Even though you have to take some precautions and be ever-aware of how what you do — and don't do — may affect your baby, many women say they've never felt healthier than when they carried their children.