Second trimester of pregnancy is the time when a mom-to-be becomes visibly pregnant, which means her baby bump is now more obvious. This is also the period of rapid growth for the baby, now called a fetus. These three months of pregnancy bring along a relief from morning sickness and tiredness from the first trimester and is the golden period of pregnancy where mom-to-be feels more energetic and fit.
Second trimester witnesses most of the baby’s brain and bone development. The lungs, heart and blood systems are also developing during this three-month period, to the point where the fetus will be capable of living outside the mother's body after the 24th week. Nutrition continues to remain in focus for healthy growth and development of baby as well as for Mom-to-be.
The food that a Mom-to-be eats is the main source of nourishment for her baby. So it’s vital to consume foods that are rich in the required nutrients in the right balance. Taking a supplement like Mother’s Horlicks, enriched with 25 vital nutrients and 50% RDA of nutrients like Vitamin A and E, is a great way to keep up with the nutritional requirements in second trimester.
Here is your GO TO CHECKLIST of top 5 nutrients that you must include in your diet during second trimester of pregnancy:
Since the baby's brain development is at its peak in the second trimester, getting enough DHA during helps this development and ensures improved behavior, attention, focus, and learning in children at a later age. Consuming adequate DHA during pregnancy reduces the risk of allergies in infants and a positive influence on immune development. DHA decreases throughout pregnancy in the mother as it is selectively transferred to the fetus. Hence it is important to increase intake with every trimester based on requirement. DHA is a significant component of the brain and retina. Adequate levels of DHA in Mom-to-be’s prenatal diet can ensure a healthy, full-term pregnancy.
Recommended Daily Intake: 300 mg
Our body can't make calcium, so we need to get it from food or supplements. During second trimester, baby’s bone development is at its peak. Hence it is essential for Mom-to-be to focus on consuming calcium through food or supplements to fulfill the nutritional requirement. If Mom-to-be does not consume the required amount of calcium, baby will draw this from her body, leaving her to bear long term consequences. Calcium helps body regulate fluids and build baby’s bones and tooth buds.
Recommended Daily Intake: 1000 mg
Trimester 2 is when the body starts demanding more protein, considering that baby starts growing rapidly now. Protein positively affects the growth of fetal tissue, including the brain. It also helps Mom-to-be’s breast and uterine tissue to grow during pregnancy and helps in increasing blood supply to the baby. Protein also plays a vital role in making antibodies for baby’s immune system.
Recommended Daily Intake: 70 g
Vitamin D also called the Sunshine Vitamin, is crucial for absorption of calcium. It’s deficiency therefore can prevent the baby from getting enough of both. Vitamin D invests in the well-being of growing baby by supporting healthy bone development which is one of the crucial aspects for baby development in second trimester.
Recommended Daily Intake: 10mg
During second trimester a Mom-to-be’s body is undergoing major physical changes. An increase in weight could result in cramping in feet more often. Magnesium helps reduce these cramps and also plays a role in strengthening the baby's bones.Owing to hormonal changes during pregnancy, more magnesium is excreted through the urine. In addition, magnesium plays a role in the embryo's cell division and growth.
Recommended Daily Intake: 310 mg
In addition to eating a well balanced nutritious food, it is important to drink plenty of fluids to replenish and retain the fluid requirements. Increasing calories by an extra 340 per day in the second trimester is important to support the baby's growth and development. The key is to eat well and not go by the myth of “eat for two”, since this could make mom-to-be to gain unhealthy weight, possibly leading to poor outcomes for mom and baby.
Disclaimer: It is important to consult with your Doctor before deciding the dose and content of nutrition before consumption.
The views, opinions and recommendations expressed in this article are solely those of the author and intended as an educational aid