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The best thing is to take prenatal vitamin. This is VERY important. Many studies show a lack of Folic Acid can cause many birth defects.
It's important to get DHA for baby brain development. That is in many prenatal vitamins, and also fish. Be very careful with fish. Some is good for pregnancy, some is very dangerous due to mercury. I would do an internet search of "pregnancy safe fish." There are also apps for phones that will tell you what fish is safe so you have a quick reference in restaurants.
Lots of fruits and veggies, but fresh washed are best, or frozen. Some studies say canned veggies may have harmful chemicals in them.
Meat if fine, but prenatals have a lot of iron. Prenatals plus red meat can make her really constipated, and this is already a problem for pregnancy. Apple and prune juice help with constipation, as does drinking a lot of water.
Some things are REALLY dangerous! Cold lunch meat can cause a miscarriage, do not have her eat any cold lunch meat! It can have a bacteria called Listeria that can cause miscarriage.
There are so many different opinions on what women should eat and avoid during pregnancy. I will share what "rules" and suggestions I followed, but each woman can make their own decisions
For me, I made sure my diet was full of healthy foods. Of course I did have the occasional treat, but I really tried my best to put healthy foods in my body. I ate organic veggies and fruits as much as possible. Even though there were times I wanted to eat a big mac every day..or use my pregnancy as an excuse to eat everything in sight, I really tried my best to keep control of consuming too much. A pregnant woman only needs 400 extra calories per day..so it doesn't take much! I always made sure to wash my veggies and fruit well and all meat had to be cooked well done (Even though I prefer my steak rare!) I drank a lot of water, and added lemon to it when I was getting bored. Soup was my best friend..although I tried to make it myself rather than eating it from a can. I ate oatmeal nearly every morning for breakfast.
Please note though, some women have bad morning sickness...so a lot of foods may make them sick. In that case, it's important for them to eat whatever they can keep down, even if it isn't the healthiest choice!
To keep my morning sickness in check (I only had mild nausea and vomiting) I ate 1/4 cup of sunflowers seeds each day. I also drank gingerale or boiled ginger root in water when I needed nausea relief.
Things I tried to avoid and why:
-Canned foods (BPA in the cans)
-Deli meats and processed meats (listeria risk and very high in nitrates, which are carcinogenic)
-Coffee (although they say one cup a day is ok, I did not consume any coffee or caffeinated beverages. I wasn't comfortable with the idea of my child feeling the effects of caffeine).
-Alcohol (again, acceptable for some, but not for me in the least bit).
-Raw meats/fish. This was hard, as I love sushi, but I found a number of non-raw sushi rolls that were delicious
-Foods that were highly processed.
-Advil, asprin, etc. I only took tylenol when absolutely necessary.
I took a regular prenatal, and also DHA Omega 3 supplements. If she does want to take an Omega supplement, make sure it comes from a clean fish source. low in mercury. I use Carlson Super DHA Gems.
Towards the end of my pregnancy (around 36 weeks) I started drinking Red Raspberry Leaf tea to tone my cervix.
Good luck! I hope your wife has a healthy and enjoyable pregnancy!
Good advice above. I just wanted to add two things:
1. Pregnant women should stay away from soft cheeses as well like feta or ricotta.
2. Taking a prenatal is not a substitute for eating healthy. It helps make up what might be missing but it's not instead of eating a healthy diet.
Co-Host of the Feb 2014 DDC
My Beautiful Children
Morgan - Jan 2006
Alastrin - Apr 2007
Liam - Mar 2011
Aria - Feb 2014
All of the above is great advice. You can also give her foods to off set some of her symptoms like fatigue, aches and swelling. Rather than taking medicine, the foods she eats will definitely help to get her through the tough spots. I also highly recommend juicing fresh fruits and veggies (so long as you wash them thoroughly). Fresh juice has tons of nutrients, anti-inflammatory properties, fights heartburn, increases energy, baby development etc... that you will never find in pasteurized store bought juices.