My cousin used to stay with us during her pregnancy when I was in 7th standard. She had a major craving for eating spicy food. Every doctor visit was incomplete without relishing chole-bhatoore in the restaurant near to the clinic for her. Every other evening, we had a party at home as my mother used to cook special meal for her. She was expecting and had hunger of bheem(of Mahabharata). Seeing her, as a child my assumption was "Pregnancy is all about eating whatever you want".
However, my fairy tale proved wrong when I myself conceived and had a severe morning sickness. I was not able to eat most of the things that I was having before pregnancy without any issue. Everything was adding to my acidity. Hence for two months, I was mostly on super plain diet which included only sweet Daliya, dal-rice and curd. I sacrificed my favorite milk tea, dhokla and Maggie as all of them were giving me more trouble. However, on every gyne visit, lady started saying increase diet. No matter how much I tried to convince her that I didn't feel like eating, she kept saying eat more. My super excited family members used to ask me about my craving and I had no answer. I was craving for having any craving!
Second trimester was better though. And a simple change in my diet did wonders for me. In North India, summer brings many of my favorite fruits. There are plenty of watery fruits like watermelon, muskmelon, lychees, cucumber that are very juicy and zero in calories. I added all of them in my daily diet. I was having fruits, three times in a day. I was well aware of the facts that fruits are good for the body but I never gave this much of importance to them before. During my pregnancy, fruits were my best friends. And eventually I saw their magic.
* They cured my acidity. Having a banana in the morning works really well for digestion and excessive acid formation.
* They improved immunity. Most of the fruits are good source of Vitamin A and C. With other enormous benefits, having fruits improved my skin and hair health too.
* Most summer fruits are healing foods. They can cure your long term deficiencies. I had a history of calcium deficiency. But my test proved that it was improved a lot.
* All those watery fruits helped me maintaining an ideal weight till 9th month of my pregnancy. They were filling but the same time easy to diagest.
One incident I would like to share here, as it is around my fruit shopping of that time. During my pregnancy, my evening schedule was to get the drop (from office transport) near the fruit market of my house and to buy fruits for next 2-3 days. My house was at walking distance from there. One day I bought so much including a big watermelon. As I moved I realized my legs were suffering. I had a laptop bag on my back, a handbag, and a cloth bag full of fruits on my shoulder. Suddenly a boy came near and offered me help. First I was hesitant but he said he would carry my bags only till I wanted him to be with me. My locality was full of CA aspirants and I assume he was one such student. He happily carried my load till the lane of my house. I was really touched with his gesture. In this era of "scratch your own back", very few people care about pregnant or elderly people in public are. But that was an exception.
Coming back to the topic, an expecting mother need 40-60% more nutrients than before. To maximize the prenatal nutrients, the mother should focus on including fruits, vegetables, protine, whole grains and dairy products along with suppliments. My personal experience with fruits was really satisfying. They are comfort food, just peel and have. Food craving is a natural way through which body indicates towards its needs. In place of having anything bulky, it is better to have a bowl of fruits. They give you all the nutrients with keeping you hydrated. For pregnant ladies, fruits also provide the sweetness that most of them crave but in a very natural way. Try having fresh fruits instead of frozen or canned. Also, indulging to local and seasonal fruits is way better than buying exotic fruits from super markets. I am still continuing my habit of having fruits everyday. At least one every day. And I have imbibed the same habit in my son and.
Note: There are certain family and region wide conventions on avoiding certain fruits during pregnancy in our country. Like in my family, it is assumed that one should not have Papaya during pregnancy. Although my doctor never told me anything to avoid in fruits, I went with my family's belief. Please check with elderly ladies of your family if they have any such supposition.
How was your food habit during pregnancy? Do share with me!!
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