One of the first things every new mom-to-be does is makes herself a chart of things to eat. If you glance into it, you would see no one would have missed out on nuts. Nuts during pregnancy or eating nuts while pregnant is a very good start to a healthy journey. It not only keeps the mother healthy but also boosts the growth of the baby. Many nuts like walnuts, cashew nuts etc. during pregnancy has the potential to boost the brain development of the baby. They are rich in essential oils, minerals and vitamins, but this does not mean you eat them a lot. It comes with a dosage. Take a look at our list of best nuts to eat during pregnancy.
Nutritional Benefits of Nuts During Pregnancy:
During pregnancy, mothers tend to get hungry at wee hours. Munching on unhealthy snacks like fried foods may seem alluring, but is best avoided. Nuts make an excellent snack choice that is also laden with beneficial properties for the expectant mother and her growing baby.
Nuts are naturally also rich in vitamin B and E. They are a good source of fat. However, roasting them in oil would lead to an unnecessary amount of calories and a high amount of protein. They sure taste good when toasted, but again it leads to the reduction of nutrient content. Remember to store them in airtight containers so, that doesn’t go rancid.
Protein is very important for the growth of the fetus. They are considered very beneficial during pregnancy and including nuts in your daily diet gives you a good dose of protein.
Fibre from your diet helps to relieve some of the unpleasant problems of pregnancy such as haemorrhoids and constipation. Besides, it also helps in weight management and regulating blood pressure. Nuts like almonds, Brazil nuts, walnuts and hazelnuts have a high content of fibre that helps to alleviate problems associated with bowel movements.
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Nuts like pistachios, pine nuts, walnuts and cashew nuts are known to be the powerhouse of copper. Copper is very vital for the
healthy development of the brain and, it also aids the absorption of iron in the body. Hence pregnant mothers should eat nuts daily to get a good dose of copper during pregnancy.
A pregnant woman normally requires 27mg of iron daily from their diet. Iron is essential for the production of haemoglobin and also aids in producing more blood in the body. Nuts are an extremely good source of iron.
5. Vital Minerals:
Minerals like manganese, calcium and magnesium are important to support the healthy growth of the baby in the womb. They are also crucial for the development of the nerves, skeleton, muscle and ligaments of the growing fetus. Nuts are loaded with these essential minerals and, health practitioners, therefore, recommend eating nuts during pregnancy.
6. Essential Vitamins:
Nuts completely fulfil the requirement of the essential vitamin of expectant mothers. These vitamins, especially Vitamin E, helps to reduce the risk of preeclampsia and also monitors the blood pressure level.
Health Benefits of Nuts During Pregnancy:
There is a range of benefits that eating nuts can provide. Take a look at some of the best benefits.
1. Nuts are naturally rich in vitamins, minerals, proteins and EFA’s.
2. Eating nuts while pregnant will ensure that the right amount of proteins, minerals and vitamins reach the baby for its development.
3. They are the best source of good fat. However, limit your intake; else you might just start storing up the pounds to your body, making you overweight.
4. Macadamia nuts are rich in monounsaturated fat which is essential during your pregnancy. Pistachios, on the other hand, supply you with necessary antioxidants. They have less glycemic level, thus making it ideal for diabetic mothers. Walnuts are known to benefit your heart and keep cholesterol levels under control. These range of nuts pack in them some of the essential nutrients you need during your pregnancy. We, therefore, advise you to eat a handful of them. However, watch out on the quantity.
5. Eating nuts during pregnancy can ward off any sort of allergy for the mother and the baby.
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The biggest benefit of eating nuts lies in the natural zinc, folate and potassium they contain. All of these are essential for the development and healthy growth of the fetus. Luckily, you and your baby can almost get all the nutrients from eating the right nuts. The nutrient-dense nuts will be a good way to ensure your body gets the right fuel for growth. However, our only word of caution is that you watch out for the quantity of intake. The right amount of nuts can do wonders for your body. So, can you eat nuts when pregnant? Yes, you sure can, but watch out for the quantity.
Side Effects of Nuts During Pregnancy:
There has always been a debate over the issue of eating nuts during pregnancy. However, recent studies in this regard have revealed that eating nuts are good during pregnancy when consumed in limits and also when the expectant mother does not have any nut allergy.
- As nuts are labelled high in fats and calories, they should mostly be consumed in their natural state. A pregnant mother should avoid sugar-coated or fried nuts as it adds unwanted calories and does more harm than good.
- When you consume nuts in excess, it can lead to nausea and stomach cramps.
- Overconsumption of nuts during pregnancy can also lead to excessive weight gain.
Interesting Facts About Nuts in Pregnancy:
What wonders can eating nuts during pregnancy do?
a. Cashews are an amazing source of protein. Well, the shell is not. Although the cashew sleeps inside the shell, the shell can lead to irritation and other allergies. Cashews contain a high amount of essential oils that will be beneficial for the development of the baby.
b. Peanuts, almonds and pistachios especially have a high amount of fat and are therefore good sources of vitamins and minerals.
c. It is highly possible that you get hungry at odd hours when pregnant. Nuts are a saviour! Grab a handful of nuts and replace them with your fried foods as a healthy snacking option.
d. Eating nuts while pregnant can also boost the intelligence of your child.
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Types of Nuts Good for Pregnancy:
Here are some best nuts to eat during pregnancy.
1. Peanuts: Eating peanuts during pregnancy can help reduce the risk of your child developing allergy to it. Take a palm-sized quantity of peanuts for best results. They contain the highest amount of protein you may need.
2. Almonds: Serve about 30 grams of almonds for yourself. That should do well for an enriched supply of fibre and vitamin E. It reduces the risk of heart disease and helps in brain development of the child.
3. Walnuts: Walnuts are very low in fibre and monounsaturated fat. However, they are enriched omega 3 than any other nuts. These small brain sized nuts will help in the cognitive development of your baby. Serve yourself about three walnuts.
4. Brazil Nuts: These anti-oxidant rich nuts will protect you against heart disease and even cancer. Eating Brazil nuts when pregnant can be rewarding. Take about 30 grams of Brazil nuts every day.
Nuts are recommended prenatal foods for expectant mothers owing to their beneficial properties. They are known to be denser in nutrients when compared to fruits and vegetables. However, you must be aware that are also high in calories and fats and hence should be taken only in moderation. Therefore, nuts for pregnant women have to be taken in moderation and only after good consultation with your doctor.