Debunking Myths About the Pregnancy Diet

There have always been myths or grandmother knows best debate over what is best for a pregnancy. Most may have been well-meaning, but they can also make a pregnant mother anxious and at times these rules are too restrictive. Be it an argument of what nutrition is best while pregnant or whether you should only eat food or take maternal milk supplements like Similac® Mum, make sure to know fact from myth when it comes down to it.

Myth 1: Eating for two

Just because you are pregnant, it does not mean you should double up on caloric intake immediately. How much food to eat depends on your original weight, height, and lifestyle. In early stages, your diet can be as always or by the advice of an Obstetrician. Generally speaking, caloric intake should be increased by 340 to 450 spread out over the day in later pregnancy stages. Keep in mind that the extra calories only come from fresh fruits or vegetables and not fatty, sugary, high sodium, and overly processed foods. This is because gaining too much weight can cause gestational diabetes and high blood pressure complications in mothers.1, 2

Myth 2: Dieting is bad while pregnant

With societal pressure on how a pregnant mother should look, fear of gaining weight and making sure a child is not undernourished is at a stalemate. Exercise is fine so long as they are not akin to crash dieting or put you at risk of falling, or increase core temperature too much. Any or a combination can cause potential injuries in every stage of pregnancy. Based on individual advice from a doctor, mothers can do light to moderate exercises for 20 to 30 minutes per session at 4 to 5 times a week rate.1, 2

Myth 3: Morning sickness only happens only in the morning, other times it is bad

Nausea or vomiting during pregnancy is extremely common and is not exclusive to day time. It is called “morning sickness” because it is most likely to occur in the morning when hormones are most active. Morning sickness after effects can last all day, while others may get sick only after meals. An enhanced sense of smell can also affect when you get the sickness. To ease the symptoms and refill nutrients you may have lost, add as much variety of foods to make up for the daily nutrient requirements.1

Good quality nutrition is important at any stage in life and especially important during pregnancy.  It provides the mother with what she needs so that she can provide the best for her child to grow up happy. Since deficiencies in certain nutrients can cause serious complications, doctors would recommend pregnant mothers to take supplements to help fill any nutritional gaps. For example, Similac® Mum is scientifically formulated to support the nutritional needs of pregnant and breastfeeding mothers without causing excessive weight gain.3 The scientific combination of Lutein, Natural RRR Vitamin E, DHA, Chlorine, Folic Acid and Iron support brain and eye development.

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  3. Huynh DTT et al. J Matern Fetal Neonatal Med. 2017 May 7: 1-9 –