tips for healthy food choices for expectant mothers

The three sources of nutritional building blocks an expectant mother uses to make her baby are, of course, the air she breathes in, the drinks she swallows, and the food she eats..

three sources of nutrients…

The three sources of nutritional building blocks an expectant mother uses to make her baby are, of course…

  1. the air she breathes in
  2. the drinks she swallows
  3. the food she eats

Thankfully, these three sources of nutrients can be controlled, and I’m sure you’ll agree it’s worth every effort to make sure your baby gets only the best.

1. what you breathe…

:-( We’ve all heard it until we’re blue in the face…smoking tobacco…or anything else…has an enormous effect on your developing baby. That’s because the chemicals an expectant mother inhales, float round in her blood and cross the placenta, where they have an even bigger effect on her tiny growing human, than they do on the smoker herself.

There’s no other way of saying it…if you smoke: stop. And encourage your partner to stop, too…or ask him to go out into the middle of the nearest field and do it there, so you and baby aren’t forced to inhale his secondary, chemical-laden smoke.

:-) Go for walks in the open air away from traffic fumes as often as you can. The exercise is good for you, and your baby will thank you for the lungs-full of clean, fresh oxygen you breathe in.

2. what you drink…

:-( Empty kilojoules are not any help at all to either of you, so save your money and don’t buy fizzy, coloured, packaged, and processed drinks like fruit juices, colas, sports drinks, vitamin waters, and similar man-made liquids.

:-) Instead, the best way of having fruit juice is to eat the whole fruit. Then you’ll also get the fibres, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants Mother Nature put there for our benefit.

:-( Alcohol is a brain poison, which crosses the placenta and affects baby, so do your best to stop using alcohol during your pregnancy. And you need to avoid it while breast-feeding, too, otherwise baby will be drinking alcoholic milk.

:-) Many sensible mothers take the opportunity of this amazing miracle of giving life, to remain teetotal and never use alcohol again. Perhaps you could be that strong, too.

:-) Fresh water…preferably filtered tap-water… is the safest and cheapest drink… and mothers-to-be need plenty of it every day.

3. what you eat…

dense carbohydrates…

:-( White flour products are all lacking the vitamins, minerals, enzymes, essential oils, and antioxidants Mother Nature put in the grains, because they’re destroyed during the various manufacturing processes.

So, leave the white bread, bagels, hamburger rolls, white rice, and white pasta on the shelf. Instead, go for the nutrient-richer whole-wheat varieties…but in small quantities. All these dense carbohydrates are packed with kilojoules, so resist eating them as the main component of meals…use them like condiments, only.

:-) Instead, make your main source of carbohydrates colourful vegetables, and a few colourful fruits. A good way to achieve this is to mentally divide your dinner plate into quarters. On one quarter put some lean protein, about the size of the palm of your hand. On the other three quarters serve colourful, steamed vegetables, sprinkled with a little cold-pressed virgin olive oil. Then if you want rice, pasta, or potatoes, take a small serving about the size that would fit into one of your cupped hands.

fried foods…

:-( Fried foods usually contain fats, the structures of which have been altered by the heat of frying…greatly reducing their nutritional value. Some of the altered fats actually change in a particular way that makes them detrimental to health…best avoided like the plague!

:-( Grilled and barbecued foods can develop carcinogens, especially if they’re allowed to become too dark or black. So, if you can’t resist grilling, dry-frying, or toasting food, do it very, very lightly…and never eat burnt stuff. There’s a post about unhealthy ways of cooking food, here.


:-) Protein is essential for mother and her developing baby, and three good sources are wild-caught fish, and free-range chicken and turkey. Most of the saturated fat is in the skin, so it’s wise to remove chicken and turkey skin, as well as bits of white fat, before you cook the meat.

:-) Grass-fed lean red meat is okay, too…once or twice a week. Actually, even though you cut off all the visible fat, it’s still got a lot of saturated fat and cholesterol in it. The red colour of blood masks the fat, so you can’t see it.

:-) It doesn’t always have to be meat or fish for your protein…free-range eggs, low-fat unsweetened yoghurt, low-fat cheese, beans, lentils, chick-peas, quinoa, fermented non-GMO soya, are good sources of protein, too.

:-( Processed meats are often high in nitrates, nitrites, sodium, and fat, so choose wisely what to put on your crisp-bread. Sliced boiled egg is good :-)


:-) Vegetables are the main source of vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, enzymes, and antioxidants… if they haven’t been killed off by the heat of cooking. Boiling vegetables removes the water-soluble vitamins and other nutrients… lightly steaming them helps retain the most nutrients.

:-) Keep the stodgy starch…like potatoes…to a minimum and choose vegetables such as spinach, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli, green beans, fresh peas, beetroot, pumpkin, tomatoes. Dark green and colourful vegetables provide antioxidants to keep you, baby, and the rest of your family healthy.

:-) Garlic, onions, chives, and parsley, are seasonings packed with nutrients and antioxidants, too, so use them to put natural flavours and goodness into your food, rather than the synthetic cubes and powders.


:-) To help prevent constipation, the mixed fibres in apples and pears are very effective, especially if you drink plenty of water during the day as well.

:-) Berries…even frozen ones…contain lots of antioxidants to boost the immune system, and they’re great for making delicious shakes with low-fat yoghurt and some protein powder like GNLD’s Nutrishake.

:-) Citrus fruits are good, because they provide lots of fibre, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals.

are you getting the nutrients you expect from your vegetables and fruit?…

Here’s a statement of the obvious…vegetables and fruits can only contain the nutrients that were in the soil when they were growing. But how many of us actually think about soil quality?

:-( The nutrients in the soil nowadays come from plastic bags of fertilisers, that usually contain the cheapest source of nitrates and phosphates that make plants grow quickly.

:-) Farmers, who use rich organic fertilisers, know that mother and baby need a lot more nutrients than just nitrates and phosphates, and thankfully there are more and more farmers who cultivate in this healthy way. Look for organic produce in the supermarket…it usually costs a bit more, but the investment in your health, and your baby’s healthy development, are well worth the extra.

:-) Here’s to your joyful, healthy pregnancy :-)