Pregnant and Hungry

Protein? Yuck!

3. Protein makes me nauseous.

Pregnancy cravings

Protein is essential when you're expecting, but often the thought of fish or eggs make us turn green. Not to worry! These days we have so many alternatives. Almost all carb-rich favorites (pretzels, bagels, crackers, cereal) have high-protein counterparts. In terms of dry cereals, Kashi GoLean has 13 grams per serving, and Quaker Oats Weight Control Oatmeal has 7 grams per serving. You can even get high-protein bagels (such as Weight Watchers). Hop online to find any of these products.

Another idea: chicken soup (it goes down easy, plus it satisfies a salt craving). Stir in pureed white beans, which are mild in flavor, but full of protein and fiber.

Natural almond and peanut butter are also excellent sources of protein. And if you're craving citrus, lemon- or lime-flavored yogurt has up to 8 grams of protein per cup.

Pregnant and Hungry

I Feel Guilty

4. I just can't eat right all the time.

Pregnancy cravings

Perfection is not the goal. This last point is probably the most important. Pregnancy makes us worry about everything, from the temperature of our bathwater to whether the vibrating massage chairs at the nail salon will cause fetal distress. We know too much. While we should all strive to do the best we can, 100 years ago (or merely 20) we didn't have half as many don'ts, and babies were just fine. That hot dog you ate before you realized you were pregnant is okay -- stressing about it will do more harm than good. Indeed, our body works in mysterious ways, but there's a method to its madness. Baby's health always comes first, and she will get what she needs from our sometimes erratic food choices. I look at my daughter, Madeleine, and marvel that she's made almost entirely of oatmeal, cheese, and almonds!

Originally published in the December 2007 issue of American Baby magazine.

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