Nutrition and pregnancy (Nausea, athletes and older women)

Each pregnancy has different nutritional needs, for example Elena: She suffered nausea 🤢 in her first pregnancy, but she was athletic 🏋️‍♀️ during the second and sedentary 💆‍♀️ in the third.

Today in #KnowledgeIsSuccess the nutritionist Vania Brito explains this case to us with a single woman, 3 very different pregnancies and small details that made a big difference.

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Many people get scared or angry when they hear the word diet or regimen. Because they think that a diet is the same as starving yourself and that a diet means only eating certain things, but if we look at the definition of the word, a good diet means having good eating habits, that is, eating enough, several times a day. , with all the different nutrients that you and your baby need.

There may be slight variations but usually a young and active woman requires around 2,000 calories a day, an athletic woman requires 2,000 calories or more and an adult woman with little physical activity would require around 1,800. We have all heard that during pregnancy you have to eat for two, but of course that is not the case, you cannot compare the nutrients required by a mother weighing 40, 50 or more kilos and those of a baby who will weigh only three kilos at birth. . Actually the increase in daily intake should be 200 to 300 additional kilocalories… 10% more food, so that the calories for Elena during her three pregnancies we added 300 kilocalories respectively regardless of age and like everything in life. It is important not only to increase the quantity but also to improve the quality and pay close attention to detail.

We already know thanks to several videos by Dr. Monsalve that the first change in diet is to start taking folic acid during the three months before achieving pregnancy and throughout the first trimester, 400 micrograms is usually recommended although depending on your diet and condition, your doctor may prescribe more or less than this amount. Folic acid is a vitamin that is found naturally in green leafy vegetables such as spinach, chard, lettuce, watercress and as well as legumes and nuts. There are also multivitamin supplements that contain it but be careful and be responsible with your use. consumption, it is not about taking multivitamins and eating spinach every day or overdoing a certain food group.

Proteins and nausea

The next important and vital nutrient of the first trimester is protein. The main problem that Elena had during her first pregnancy was that her chicken, fish, and beef made her very nauseous and caused her to vomit all the time. The first recommendation is to divide your food into 5 to 6 meals during the day. The second recommendation is that you consume ice even if you chew it or cold foods as it counteracts nausea and vomiting.

Chewed ice, water with mint, or a little mint, water with chlorophyll, which is even more refreshing, can go down very well in your stomach. Also use lemon, lemon is a citrus fruit that can also remove or reduce the sensation of nausea, ginger infusions include cold electrolytes, toast or crackers.

Another key is that proteins not only come from meat or foods of animal origin but we find in proteins of vegetable origin such as soy, chickpeas, beans, lentils almost the same amount of protein as meat, so like this Like Elena, if you are having nausea during your pregnancy, with a little experimentation we can find you a delicious and stomach-friendly eating plan.

Now, what happened to Elena’s second pregnancy? An adult woman needs around 46 grams of protein a day and when she gets pregnant we will have to increase an additional 25 grams. If she plays sports we will have to increase 1 to 2 grams of protein for every kilogram of weight. If your physical activity is moderate, if you practice yoga, if you practice swimming, if you practice Pilates, your protein consumption per kilogram of weight is calculated at approximately 1 gram, but if you are a high-performance athlete, then we will have to adjust the proteins up to 2 grams.

Iron and anemia

Now we go to the next group of essential nutrients, which are minerals, mainly iron and calcium. The body needs iron to produce hemoglobin and hemoglobin is used for red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout the body, which is why when you have anemia people feel exhausted and suffer from fainting or dizziness, it is basically as if your body needs iron. It’s short of breath.

Women in general are more prone to anemia because with each period we lose blood rich in iron and we have to replenish this mineral all the time. If when you were a teenager you suffered from fainting, dizziness and you had to drink juices to regain your energy, it is likely that you have suffered from anemia even if you were never diagnosed with it. If you have never suffered this type of fainting and you eat properly, you are lucky because when you start pregnancy it is most likely that you do not need iron or that you need less than a milligram a day because your uterus is full of reserves, but as it grows the placenta and the baby begins to receive oxygen through the umbilical cord, you are going to need iron, much more iron 2 milligrams 4, 6 and perhaps you can go up to 8 milligrams a day and of course in the case of athletes these requirements can go up to the double.

Athletes are fortunate in that it is very unlikely that they will have common complications such as preeclampsia, but their iron should certainly be checked to ensure that they are in good condition. Please always go to your nutritionist because you can find different presentations such as elemental iron, such as ferrous sulfate, ferrous fumarate, ferrous gluconate, to name a few.

Calcium and osteoporosis

In addition to being more likely to suffer from anemia, women also have four times the risk of osteoporosis than men because with the arrival of menopause, estrogen levels drop, so it is very common for mothers who are already in their second third to come to the consultation. pregnant and since they are 40 years old or so, they drink a liter of milk in the morning and another in the afternoon, they eat yogurt daily, they carry pieces of cheese to add to their food and in addition to everything they take their calcium supplement, but the The truth is that contrary to what many believe, pregnancy and breastfeeding do not increase the risk of osteoporosis or decalcification.

Several studies indicate that as long as the mother is not malnourished or hungry, pregnancy can improve the density and even strengthen the bones, especially the hip, which must be prepared for childbirth. The key then, even for cases like Elena’s third pregnancy, is to consume four servings of dairy products a day, starting breakfast with a cup of milk, at midday a cup of yogurt, in the middle of the afternoon with fortified cheeses and at night another cup of milk.

Check carefully the nutritional value of the cheeses you buy because some do not contain any calcium, while others contain almost 10% of the daily requirement for each slice, for example Manchego, Manchego is composed more of fat than calcium. For women over 40 we usually recommend a little antioxidants and omega 3 but the truth is that really, as people say: “40 is the new 30” and as long as the mother stays active, stays away from any vice and Feed well, both you and your baby will be in good health.

In summary

To close this video let us remember then: Folic acid is essential from three months before achieving pregnancy and throughout the first trimester, you must increase your protein intake and eat at least five times a day in small portions. At the beginning of pregnancy, you will hardly need iron, but for the second and third trimester we are going to increase it a lot, especially if you play sports and do not exceed your calcium intake, even if you are older, four servings a day are enough.

It never hurts to consume foods rich in antioxidants and omega 3. It is also important to highlight fiber consumption during pregnancy, drink enough water and stay away from unhealthy, irritating foods. Remember that nutrition is not prohibiting food, it is eating enough with variety and quality.

Don’t be afraid of the nutritionist and see you at Creafam.

“40 is the new 30” and as long as the mother stays active, stays away from any vices and eats well, both she and her baby will enjoy good health.

RDN. Marisol Navarrete
RDN. Marisol Navarrete
Clinical nutrition and lactation
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