Thanks to Nicole Moneer, a Chek Holistic Lifestyle Coach and NASM CPT, who provided this post. 🙂 Enjoy!
Pregnancy is a crucial time for women to provide their body, their growing fetus and uterus with the right nutrients. Sadly, many people today are malnourished. In fact, most of the women I work with have the intention to eat healthy, however, many don’t realize that some of what they are eating is void of important nutrients and can sometimes even contain chemicals.
Have you ever caught yourself thinking, ‘I’m pregnant! I can eat whatever I want, because I’m getting bigger anyway.’? While it’s true that you can eat whatever you want, to be as healthy as possible during and after your pregnancy, it’s best to stay focused on nutrition while you’re carrying your little one.
If a uterus is fed real, nourishing foods, it has the chance to function properly during labor and delivery. According to Ramiel Nagel in Healing Our Children, eating the right foods can increase chances of fertility, a thriving pregnancy and a healthy baby. Even post-pregnancy recovery can improve based on your internal health and nutrition.
Of course, there are other health factors that play into pregnancy health, and nutrition isn’t the entire picture. The hope with maintaining good nutrition is to remove the chance that nutrition can play a factor in negative health for you or your baby. After all, you have enough to think about while pregnant!
Our country’s health— and especially our children’s health— continues to suffer for many reasons. One of those is our food supply and the fact that we might not have the information to choose the most nutrient-dense foods when pregnant and while breastfeeding.
I’d love to share a personal story with you…
I was born sick with an upper respiratory infection, I was frequently ill for the first 30+ years of my life, and instead of being breastfed, my parents chose to feed me formula. My dad, a conventional doctor, prescribed drugs for my chronic conditions and symptoms, but I never got relief. At age 33, I finally took matters into my own hands and turned my health around with long-term lifestyle changes via nutrition and supplementation. For the last 11 years, I have been free of all prescription drugs and no longer get sick or suffer from the chronic conditions and symptoms I had for decades.
At age 44, I am healthier than I was at 24! I took responsibility for my health, and I did the research needed to get my body on track. Note: I found what worked for me and my body. My path is not necessarily the right path for all.
Moms Have a Ton of Control!
Passing that information onto your children can prevent them from feeling the same confusion that many of us have as adults. We all have the power of choice and education in our own health journey. How freeing is that?!
My mission is to share invaluable information on prenatal nutrition that is not easily available to the mainstream. My hope is that this information will change your life and your family’s life for the better.
While we have a few more minutes together, let’s talk about food sources rich in vitamins.
Pregnancy Foods Containing Prenatal Vitamins
PASTURE-RAISED LIVER, 3-4 ounces once or twice a week
— Liver contains more nutrients, gram for gram, than any other food. It’s like a powerful nutrient-dense multivitamin! I started eating it weekly when I was pregnant and still do now, nursing my almost 3-year-old. Did you know that liver, not cereal, is one of the best (pureed) foods to start babies on? Grayson starting eating it after 6 months of age. Plus, it is high in B vitamins, so after eating it, you will feel a huge burst of the energy, strength and stamina all needed during pregnancy. Those Bs will even help with morning sickness. Liver is an amazing source of folic acid and vitamins A, C, K & D, along with choline, iron, DHA and zinc. Most have never eaten liver or know how to prepare it. I share over 50+ recipes in my Healthy Mom Handbook, including a few with liver.
PASTURED EGGS, daily
Egg yolks are high in cholesterol, another important nutrient that is often spoken of poorly. Did you know that sex hormones and cortisol are made from cholesterol? Moms need that cholesterol for the development of their baby’s brain, nervous system, digestive tract and to produce breast milk. Choline is also found in eggs and is important for baby’s brain development.
BONE BROTH, daily
The amino acid glycine is found in bone broth. It contributes to strong bones, tendons and connective tissue in both you and your growing baby. It also aids in digestion and helps with healing a leaky gut, which is ubiquitous today. Leaky gut is linked to so many chronic conditions. I, too had a leaky gut. You can make your own bone broth from pasture-raised animal bones. I share a recipe in my Healthy Mom Handbook. You can also buy bone-broth. However, read ingredient labels to make sure everything is organic, that there are no additives and that the water is filtered.
GRASS-FED BUTTER, daily
Who doesn’t love butter? This is the best fat to add fat-soluble vitamins: A, D, E and K into your diet. It also supports the thyroid with iodine. Grass-fed butter contains DHA and arachidonic acid which promote brain development, prevent epilepsy, improve fertility and support immune response. This is one healthy fat that will also help with breastmilk production.
WILD SEAFOOD, 2-4 times per week
Wild caught seafood contains fat-soluble Vitamins A & D, iodine and trace minerals all which support neurological function. Shrimp, lobster, crab and fish eggs are all excellent sources to include in your menu to help with baby’s intelligence and mom or dad’s reproduction/fertility.
Foods to avoid while pregnant:
- Non-organic foods/GMO foods
- White flours and white sugar
- Pasteurized dairy
- Farmed fish
- Artificial flavors, MSG, high fructose corn syrup, commercial salad dressings and condiments
- Refined table salt
- Fast food/processed foods
It is never too late to start cooking and putting your health in your hands, especially while pregnant. There is no quick fix but taking baby steps is better than not making any changes at all, even if you begin by cooking just one improved meal a day. In sharing my nutritional holistic approach with you, I’m hopeful that you’ll walk away with something to help you, your baby and your family thrive.
Enjoy the ride!
Nicole Moneer is a Chek Holistic Lifestyle Coach, a NASM CPT, an author, a mom and the creator of Healthy Mom Handbook. For more information on preconception, pregnancy and post-pregnancy nutrition, exercise, birth planning and breastfeeding, visit her site.