Nourishing Your Journey: Healthy Eating During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is the ultimate test of your body's resilience and your craving for chocolate croissants at 3.00 AM. But fear not, because healthy eating during your pregnancy is your superpower, ensuring both you and your little bun in the oven thrive through this rollercoaster ride of cravings and kicks.


Pregnancy isn't just about eating for one anymore; it's a party for two! That means your food choices now have a plus-one, and it's a tiny human who's going to grow up thinking broccoli is the ultimate comfort food. So, buckle up, because your diet isn't just about you anymore; it's about nourishing a budding life within you.

You're the executive chef for this little gastronomic adventure, and what you put on your plate isn't just about satisfying your cravings; it's about laying the foundation for your baby's future health. So, grab your fork, because we're about to embark on a journey of delicious, nutritious eating habits that will have you and your baby high-fiving each other before you know it!

Feeding Two: The Power of Nutrient-Rich Pregnancy Eating

Never skip a meal during your pregnancy, especially breakfast. Your little one has been patiently waiting since they decided to do somersaults in your belly at 4.00 AM. Breakfast is like the opening act of the greatest show on earth because it kickstarts your day and sets the tone for a healthy pregnancy.

Ever noticed that if you wait too long before eating, you start to feel like you're auditioning for a role in a morning sickness commercial? That's your body's way of saying, "Hey, fuel me up, please!" So, listen to the belly grumbles and answer them with some nutritious eats.

Speaking of eats, make sure you're getting enough of the good stuff daily. Your baby needs 3-6 servings of dairy products a day for a happy and healthy pregnancy. Think milk, yogurt, and yes, even cheese (just double-check those soft cheeses with your GP first!). These goodies are like the construction workers building your baby's future skyscraper as they provide the calcium needed for those growing bones. And hey, extra calcium for you means stronger teeth and bones, too!


Don't forget your fruits and veggies. Go green or go home, they say. Well, not really, but green veggies and sweet potatoes are superstars in the pregnancy nutrition world. Not only will they give your body the fuel it craves, but they'll also power you up with enough energy to run a marathon (or at least waddle around the park a few times).

Now, let's debunk the "eating for two" myth. Contrary to popular belief, you don't need to double up on your food intake just because there's a tiny human camping out in your uterus. In the first trimester, you can eat normally. Then, in the second trimester, aim to add around 350 extra calories to your daily intake, increasing to about 450 extra calories in the third trimester. It's like giving your body a little bonus to keep up with the demands of pregnancy.

Remember, when it comes to chowing down for two, focus on whole foods packed with all the good stuff. Say no to processed junk food because it's like inviting unwanted guests to the pregnancy party. Stick to nutrient-rich, wholesome eats that nourish both you and your baby, ensuring you both get the VIP treatment you deserve. After all, the principles of a good diet remain the same, even when you're eating for two!

Building Blocks: Essential Foods for Your Pregnancy Diet

Foods to include in your pregnancy diet

When it comes to creating the ultimate pregnancy menu, think of it as building a delicious, nutritious castle for your baby. Here's what you'll need in your culinary toolkit:

  • Starchy Superstars: Load up on whole grains like wholegrain bread, potatoes (sweet potatoes, too!), rice, pasta, and oats. They're like the sturdy bricks that lay the foundation for your baby's growth and development.
  • Fantastic Fish: Cooked fish, especially salmon, is a treasure trove of omega-3 fatty acids that support your baby's brain and eye development. But beware of the high-mercury fish like tuna and swordfish - they're the sneaky sharks in the sea of pregnancy eats.
  • Vibrant Veggies and Fruity Friends: Dive into a rainbow of fruits and veggies! They're packed with essential vitamins and minerals that keep you and your baby thriving. Plus, they add a pop of colour and flavour to your plate, making every meal a fiesta.
  • Protein Power: Don't skimp on the protein! Eggs, poultry, and lean meats are like the knights in shining armour, protecting your baby's growing muscles and organs. They're also the unsung heroes that keep you feeling full and satisfied throughout the day.
  • Dairy Delights: Milk, yogurt, and hard cheese are the calcium-rich champions of your pregnancy diet. They're like the guardians of your baby's bones and teeth, ensuring they grow strong and healthy.

But wait, there's a cheesy caveat! When it comes to cheese, tread carefully, my friend. Pregnant women are advised to steer clear of mould-ripened soft cheeses like camembert, brie, and gorgonzola. These cheesy delights might harbour listeria, a pesky bacteria that's a big no-no for your unborn baby.

So, load up on the starchy goodness, reel in some fantastic fish, embrace the rainbow of fruits and veggies, power up with protein, and enjoy a dollop of dairy. Your pregnancy plate is about to become a masterpiece of nutrition and flavour, fit for the queen (that's you!) and her royal baby.

Navigating the Food Minefield: Foods to Avoid During Pregnancy

Be aware of the dangerous foods

While there's a load of delicious delights to indulge in, there are also some foods that are off-limits for the safety of you and your little one. Here's your handy guide to steering clear of the danger zone:

  • Unpasteurised Perils: Say no to unpasteurised products like brie and other soft cheeses. These creamy delights might harbour harmful bacteria that can wreak havoc on your pregnancy.
  • Fishy Business: Certain fish like exotic varieties, shark, and swordfish are the underwater villains of pregnancy. They can be high in mercury, which is no friend to your baby's developing nervous system.
  • Raw Risks: Raw fish and eggs are a big no-no during pregnancy. Sushi lovers, take heed! It's time to trade in those spicy tuna rolls for something cooked to perfection.
  • Meat Matters: Be wary of undercooked meats, especially lunch meats. If you're craving a deli sandwich, ask them to heat up the meat a bit to zap any lurking bacteria.
  • Caffeine Conundrum: While it might be tempting to reach for that morning cup of joe, it's best to wean yourself off caffeine during pregnancy. Say goodbye to fizzy drinks and chocolate too because your baby will thank you for it!

And of course, the golden rule: alcohol is off the menu entirely during pregnancy. Cheers to sparkling water and mocktails instead!


Be aware that pregnancy might turn your palate upside down, leading to some surprising aversions. Greasy foods, fast food, meat, and anything with a strong odour might suddenly turn your stomach. Fear not, though as there's still room for indulgence! Treat yourself to frozen yoghurts and smoothies for a guilt-free dose of deliciousness.

And while you're busy nourishing yourself and your growing bump, don't forget to stay hydrated! Guzzle down lots of water and pasteurised juices to keep yourself and your baby happy and healthy. With a little caution and a lot of delicious alternatives, you'll breeze through your pregnancy with taste buds intact and cravings satisfied.

Your immune system is placed under a lot of pressure during pregnancy and you're suddenly much more vulnerable to viruses and food-borne illnesses. Be mindful at all times that chronic cases of food poisoning can trigger premature labour or even a miscarriage.

Supplements: Your Pregnancy Sidekick

Eating a balanced diet is very important for you and your baby during your pregnancy, but there are also supplements you can take that complement and support your pregnancy diet. Make sure you talk to your GP or midwife to discuss what supplements are safe for you to take during your pregnancy.

Pregnancy supplements

Folic acid: This superhero nutrient helps prevent birth defects known as neural tube defects, including spina bifida. Take 400 micrograms every day up until week 12.

Vitamin D: Needed to absorb calcium and phosphate in the body, keeping bones and teeth healthy. During your pregnancy, you'll need to provide your baby with a supply for the first six months of their life. Aim to take 8-10 micrograms of Vitamin D daily while pregnant and breastfeeding.

Iron supplements: Usually recommended only if you are anaemic.

As with most things to do with pregnancy, if you’re ever unsure about what types of food or drink are safe for you to consume throughout your pregnancy, talk to your GP or midwife because they’ll be more than happy to share this with you.

Conclusion: Nourishing Your Pregnancy Journey

As you journey through the incredible experience of pregnancy, nourishing your body with healthy foods and essential supplements becomes more important than ever. Remember, you're not just eating for one now and every bite you take supports the growth and development of your precious little one.

From indulging in hearty breakfasts to savouring nutrient-rich meals packed with fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins, your choices impact both your health and the well-being of your baby. Embrace the power of wholesome starchy foods, cooked fish like salmon, and a balanced intake of dairy to fuel your pregnancy journey.

But it's not just about what to eat. Being aware of dangerous foods and potential risks is equally crucial. Steer clear of unpasteurised products, certain types of fish, and undercooked meats to safeguard against food-borne illnesses that could harm you and your baby.

Supplements like Folic Acid, Vitamin D, and Iron act as invaluable allies, supporting your body's needs and ensuring optimal nourishment for your growing little one. Don't forget to consult with your GP and Midwife to determine the right supplements for your unique pregnancy journey.

As you navigate the joys and challenges of pregnancy, remember to listen to your body, stay hydrated, and indulge in occasional treats to keep your spirits high. And whenever in doubt, your GP or midwife is just a conversation away, ready to offer guidance, support, and reassurance.

As you embrace this transformative journey with open arms, savoring each moment, and nurturing yourself and your baby with love, care, and nourishing foods, your healthy eating choices today lay the foundation for a bright and vibrant future for both you and your little one.