No, pregnancy doesn't mean you should eat twice as much! Here's what you should look to add to your diet to ensure a healthy intake of nutrients.

Pregnant woman eating breakfast
Credit: Shannon Greer

Wouldn't it be nice if pregnancy gave you permission to eat twice as much? According to that old saying, a pregnant woman is eating for two. If you do the math, however, you'll find that you're really only eating for about one and a fraction of another. So put down the nachos and the candy bars -- you need only about 300 extra calories a day during pregnancy. If you eat for two, you'll gain way too much weight.

Spend your extra calories wisely on nutritious foods. Here are some healthful 300-calorie choices:

  • 1 cup of non-fat fruit yogurt and a medium apple
  • A baked potato with skin, topped with an ounce of low-fat cheese and 1/2 cup each of broccoli and cauliflower
  • 1 piece of whole wheat toast spread with 2 tablespoons of peanut butter
  • A turkey sandwich: 2 slices of whole wheat bread, 2 ounces of lean turkey, and lettuce and tomato
  • 1 flour tortilla (7-inch), 1/2 cup refried beans, 1/2 cup cooked broccoli, and 1/2 cup cooked red pepper
  • 1 cup of beef-and-bean chili sprinkled with 1/2 ounce of cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup of raisin bran cereal with 1/2 cup non-fat milk and a small banana

Originally published in You & Your Baby: Pregnancy.

All content on this Web site, including medical opinion and any other health-related information, is for informational purposes only and should not be considered to be a specific diagnosis or treatment plan for any individual situation. Use of this site and the information contained herein does not create a doctor-patient relationship. Always seek the direct advice of your own doctor in connection with any questions or issues you may have regarding your own health or the health of others.

Parents Magazine