This is the perfect time for you to start building a foundation for freedom from constipation in the later part of pregnancy and also after delivery. Make sure you add lots of fiber in pregnancy diet and that too, in each meal. High fiber foods like whole grains, oats and green vegetables. Opt for iron fortified whole wheat bread instead of regular white bread.
Besides other things, the baby and your body need these acids to lower the risk of premature labor, low birth weight and mental and cognitive retardation in the baby. Ensure that your diet contains sufficient amounts of Omega 3, 6, 9 fatty acids by taking foods like fresh water fish, tinned tuna, nuts and olive oil.
Your body, and the baby’s, still needs increasing amounts of calcium. Your doctor will probably prescribe you a vitamin D and calcium pill on entering the fourth month of pregnancy. You can help your baby develop stronger bones by adding at least one liter on milk products per day. Have 2 glasses of milk or 500 gm of curd or 200 gm of paneer. These act as good supplements to your calcium medication.
If your nausea is gone, you can include meat in your diet; but do make sure it is washed and cooked very thoroughly. Undercooked meat may carry deadly viruses and bacteria. If you are tempted (or obligated) to eat out, order tandoori or roasted meat as it is sure to be cooked through and through.
Fresh fruits are a must throughout pregnancy as they have loads of vitamins and minerals; plus, they are high in water content and/or fiber. The reason why fresh fruits is the absence of preservatives and artificial coloring agents. The fourth month of pregnancy may trigger acidity and heartburn. Therefore, fresh seasonal fruits of different colors should be an integral part of your diet in 4th month of pregnancy.
The growth spurt of the foetus starting from the fourth month needs more iron. In addition, your body also needs to make 3-6 extra liters of blood for your pregnancy (hence the famed preggers glow!). An iron-rich diet helps you by making more blood and the baby by aiding better growth. Add foods like nuts, dhaals, eggs, dried fruits and whole wheat products to your diet. Also, consult your doctor before starting any iron supplements.
What NOT to Eat:.
1. Soft Cheese:
Often these cheeses are made from unpasteurized milk and may harbor harmful bacteria and viruses. Therefore, avoid soft cheeses of all kinds. You can always choose foods containing hard cheese as it has low water content. The low water content makes it less prone to disease causing microorganisms.
Maida or refined flour becomes a major dietary concern in the fourth month as it is difficult to digest and can cause painful constipation. Though constipation in itself is a minor thing, it can cause hemorrhoids post delivery. So, say no to foods like samosas, momos, noodles, etc.
3. Sea Fish:
As much as possible, avoid sea fish as they are loaded with methylmercury, a compound that can cause mental retardation in the fetus. If you cannot do without fish, go for fresh water varieties.
4. Street Food:
Though it looks very tempting during your food cravings, street food must be steered clear of. There is no guarantee of the cleanliness and freshness of the foodstuffs and the containers. Street food can cause food poisoning and other water-borne diseases like typhoid. So, prepare a plate of that chaat, pakodis, anddahi bhalla at home itself.
5. Excess Of Dried Fruits:
Though a cup of dried fruits is good for you, avoid taking too many dried fruits during the fourth month of pregnancy. They are very rich and warm in essence, and for some women, can cause untimely contractions.
Called mulethi in Hindhi, this otherwise wonderful herb can wreak havoc on the pregnancy by triggering contractions. Therefore avoid licorice and licorice extracts, and remember that some candies, toothpastes and Indian gravies also contain licorice.
Answer: Congratulations for pregnancy dear
It is important that you are guided right about what to eat during pregnancy. Sticking to healthy food options will lead to safe and healthy pregnancy. Thus, follow the given advices irrespective of your lifestyle and stage of pregnancy.
Green leafy vegetables such as spinach, radish leaves.
Vegetables such as bottle gourd, bitter gourd (karela) and beetroot.
Whole-wheat items and brown rice.
Pulses like green gram, yellow lentil( arhar), kidney beans, and soya beans.
Twice in a week eat meat, eggs and fish (salmon fish, prawns.
Dried fruits especially figs, apricots and raisins, walnut and almonds.
Fruits like oranges, sweet lime and apples.
Vitamin D sources especially milk, yoghurt, butter, and cheese.
To prevent heartburn and constipation, take eight to ten large glasses of water a day.