Pregnancy Articles

When You're About to Eat for Two

Learn What to Eat Now

Nutrition Know-How
Thinking about pregnancy? Whether you're aiming to get pregnant next year or in the next few months, you should be getting ready now. This is the time to take inventory of your nutrition habits and make necessary changes that will promote good health for you and a healthy environment for your baby.

Do you drink a lot of coffee? Skip meals? Do you avoid food groups like fruits? Are you on the low carb craze? Using the following guide will help in evaluating your food choices. Are you getting the recommended number of servings from each group? This guide shows a range of daily servings for each food group. The number of servings that is right for you depends on how many calories you need. Calories are a way to measure energy. The energy your body needs depends on your age, sex, body structure, and activity level.

If you have lower calorie needs, select the lower number of servings. If you have higher calorie needs, select the higher number of servings. The amount of food that is considered to be one serving is also listed. If you eat a larger portion, it is more than one serving. For example, a hamburger bun is 2 servings. If you have a combination food like pizza, estimate the food groups that it represents - bread group (crust), milk group (cheese), vegetable group (tomato sauce).

Bread, Grains and Pasta (6-11 servings)
  • 1 slice bread
  • 1 pancake
  • 1 tortilla
  • 1/2 bun
  • 1 bagel or English muffin
  • 1 small muffin
  • 1/2 cup cooked rice, pasta or cereal
  • 1 roll
Vegetable Group (3-5 servings)
  • 1/2 cup chopped raw or cooked vegetable
  • 1 cup raw leafy vegetable
  • 1/2 cup vegetable soup
  • 1 medium potato
Fruit Group (2-4 servings)
  • 1 piece fruit
  • 1/2 cup juice
  • 1/2 cup chopped, cooked or canned fruit
  • 1/4 cup dried fruit
  • 1/2 grapefruit
  • 1/4 cantaloupe
Protein and Meat Group (2-3 servings)
  • 3 ounces cooked meat
  • 1/2 cup cooked beans
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup nuts
  • 2 tablespoons peanut butter
Dairy Group (2-3 servings)
  • 1 cup milk or yogurt
  • 1 ounce cheese
  • 1/2 cup pudding
  • 1/2 cup ice cream
  • 1/2 cup cottage cheese

A nutritious diet will provide you with the 40 or so essential nutrients needed by your body and for your baby's health too.
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About The Author

Becky Hand
Becky is a registered and licensed dietitian with almost 20 years of experience. She teaches prenatal classes and counsels individuals, helping women eat right and stay fit before, during and after their pregnancies.
Becky Hand

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