Some days, you feel tired and have the need to boost energy during pregnancy. It is quite normal, and nothing to be worried about, or it might be, depending on how you address the issue and its re-occurrence.
Throughout your pregnant days, you will need more energy than you used to when you were all alone in your body. Now, you are, as we commonly say, supposed to be eating for two, and that requires eating as much as you can for the health of your baby and yours. There are short-term energy boosters that you can use, call them quick fixes, but they are not the best options to boost energy during pregnancy.
In this article, we will consider the best foods to boost energy during pregnancy, the nature of these foods, how much energy you need during pregnancy and how you can get the required energy.
Energy Need During Pregnancy
While it is not unusual to see pregnant women wolf down large amounts of food consistently, there are some women who, for the fear of adding weight that might be hard to lose after pregnancy, decide to eat as little as possible. The result of that is that they constantly feel faint and hamper the development of their own baby.
While you’re pregnant, the body gives priority to the fetus. In other words, the container is less important than what it carries. However, the importance of both baby and mother to their loved ones cannot be contested. Therefore, it is important that you consume the needed nutritional and energy requirement.
According to research, a pregnant woman should consume about 2,115 kcal per day in the first three months of her pregnancy, 2,275 kcal per day in the second trimester, and 2, 356 kcal per day in the third trimester. On average, that is about 300 kcal more than the average woman would consume daily.
Best way to Boost Energy During Pregnancy
There are numerous options when it comes to boosting energy. When you feel tired and groggy in the morning, you can quickly have a cup of coffee or cappuccino. During the day, you can guzzle energy drinks to keep your energy high. However, this isn’t a healthy option for a pregnant lady.
While these quick fixes will work temporarily, it will subject you, a pregnant woman, to an energy roller coaster ride by rising your blood sugar level, only to leave it crashing down in no time. This causes dizziness and is not good for you and your baby.
A healthier option is to sustain your energy level by eating foods that are rich in complex carbohydrates such as fiber and proteins. These types of food provide the body with steady energy (and other essential nutrients) for a long time.
Foods to Boost Energy During Pregnancy
In this list of foods that will help you keep your energy up throughout the day by providing you with the required level needed at your stage of pregnancy, you will find foods of different natures. Some are proteins – nuts, grains, animal-source – while others are fruits and vegetables. These foods are guaranteed to help you boost energy during pregnancy
Beans and Lentils
Beans and lentils, it all depends on which is commonly found in your area, are excellent sources of energy and other nutrients such as amino acids. They provide your body with amino acids and energy. The good news is that the energy they provide is not as easily and quickly used up as in other carbohydrates sources such as white rice.
Another good thing is that they can be combined with foods containing simple sugars like white rice, yam, and potatoes for more varied energy combination to boost your energy during pregnancy.
It is also rich in fiber that helps solve constipation problems.
Brown rice is a carbohydrate-dense food that also provides the body with other nutrients. It contains about 216 kcal of energy and is one of the healthy choices you can make when it comes to whole grains.
Its fiber rich bran, and nutritive germ are still intact. It is also rich in Iron, a very important nutrient for pregnant women. It is of importance when you have a desire to boost energy during pregnancy.
Milk is a popular source of protein. It is considered one of the best nutrient sources, especially for growing kids, well, your baby is growing. A cup of milk contains about 146 kcal of energy provided by amino acids. It is also a rich source of calcium, vitamin B12, vitamin B2, selenium, and other minerals.
You can drink it alone or as part of a beverage such as tea.
Lean red meat
Protein-dense red meat are excellent sources of energy. The energy they provide is not easily digested and utilized by the body. Instead, it is supplied for use steadily.
Red meats are good sources of minerals such as iron and potassium. They can be gotten from different sources such as cow, chicken, turkey, and many more.
One finger of banana can provide an athlete the energy needed for a 30 minutes intense workout. Therefore, if there is no intense workout after you consume a finger of banana, you are left with an immense amount of energy.
It contains about 89 calories of energy in one finger (we know you won’t stop at one). It is also rich in protein and fiber. Its sugar and carb content is quite high and very simple, that is why it provides energy that can be used up quickly.
It is important to note that bananas are safe to consume as snacks or as part of a more complex meal.
Eggs are a store for nutrients, not just energy. One medium-sized egg contains only about 77 kcal of energy, but it also contains other nutrients such as folate, the vitamin Bs, phosphorus, and selenium.
The omega-3 fatty acids it contains are excellent for cardiovascular health as is the abundance of magnesium.
Cheese is a dairy product, that is, it is made from milk. Sine we know the nutrient milk is comprised of; we know what to expect from cheese. There are different types of cheese; Swiss, Mozzarella, Feta, Cottage, and many more.
Regardless of the type of cheese you choose to consume, it contains high amount minerals and vitamins. It is also rich in proteins, fats, and carbs.
Pumpkin seeds have been known to provide a host of health benefits such as prostate and heart health improvement. It is also linked to protection against some cancers.
It is rich in minerals such as phosphorus, iron, zinc, manganese, and magnesium. It also contains vitamin K, proteins, and fats.
The energy supply from pumpkin seeds is about 151kcal. The good thing is that it can be eaten with other foods. Therefore, you can expect to get more energy from the combination of your choice.
Nuts, such as almond nuts, peanuts or groundnuts, walnuts, and any other nut you can think of are good sources of nutrients such as fats, the good one, proteins, minerals and vitamins. They also contain fiber and omega-3 fatty acids.
Fats are one of the sources of energy for the body, and nuts are rich in fats. Proteins are also good energy sources, another nutrient nuts are packed with.
Whole-grains are generally beneficial in their provision of energy and other nutrients while reducing the risk of obesity. They are characteristically healthier than processed grains because they contain higher level of fiber which contains complex carbohydrates.
They are also considered low glycemic index foods because the energy they provide is not used up quickly.
Whole-grain bread, when eaten with other foods such as eggs, beans, or tea provide a tremendous amount of energy that can help you, as a pregnant lady, sustain your strength for a while.
Energy is needed to carry out your daily activities as a pregnant woman. However, you need more energy for the growth and development of your baby. Activities that would normally not happen in your body are happening and that amounts to an increased need of energy.
While you can meet your immediate energy needs by consuming beverages that offer quick fixes, it is healthier to eat foods that helps you boost energy during pregnancy. Some of these foods contain fiber, protein and other nutrients that are beneficial to you and your baby. However, they also contain a high number of calories.
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Ayomide, is a Health professional, who has worked in most healthcare unit and has a background in Nursing.