If you’re pregnant and on a budget, good choices are paramount. Here are 10 frugal foods to eat for a healthy pregnancy and baby.
Nutrition and food choices are the key drivers of health during pregnancy. Based on recommended nutritional guidelines you should be eating more for a healthy baby. How much more? Just 350-500 extra calories are plenty-however they need to be healthy, high-quality foods.
But it can become a challenge to eat healthy, quality foods when you are pregnant and on a budget.
Here’s a list of 10 frugal foods to eat for a healthy pregnancy and baby. Most of these foods below will be less expensive than processed options, and all of them will provide more nutrition. In fact, this list covers the recommended nutritional guidelines for eating while pregnant.
10 Frugal Foods to Eat for a Healthy Pregnancy and Baby
- Milk and Greek yogurt (probiotic bacteria). Dairy = Good sources for protein and calcium. Also, phosphorus, various B vitamins, magnesium, and zinc.
- Lentils beans, peas, chickpeas, soybeans, and peanuts. Legumes =Good sources for protein, fiber, iron, folate, and calcium.
- Sweet potatoes (fiber), carrots, squash, cantaloupe, apricots, spinach, and kale. All variety of berries. Rainbow Produce = Orange and bright colored produce are good sources for beta-carotene and vitamin A.
- Avocados = Great choice! A good source for monounsaturated fatty acids, which are high in potassium, copper, vitamin E and C, healthy fats, folate.
- Salmon = Rich in omega 3 acids & vita D (brain development) limit to 2-3 meals a week due to mercury and other contaminants. Be sure to talk to your care provider.
- Broccoli and dark, leafy greens = Vitamins A, C, K, calcium, iron, folate, potassium, antioxidants, fiber.
- Eggs = Good choline source.
- Water = Helps with cellular metabolism and waste removal.
- Healthy fats = Olive oil, chia seeds, flaxseed, pumpkin & sunflower seeds.
- Lean meats ( beef, pork, and chicken) = for iron, choline, other B Vitamins, (not processed).
- Oats, quinoa, brown rice-whole grains fiber (50/50 with a goal to get to 80/20 whole grains) =vitamins and protein, B Vitamins, and magnesium.
- Dried fruit = good for snacks. Watch portions.
Ways to Buy the 10 Frugal Foods to Eat for a Healthy Pregnancy and Baby
Remember, watch for seasonal sales to pick up fresh produce during the peak of the season – and with the peak flavors. Frozen is the next best nutritional option for produce, followed by dried and canned. Stock up on lean meats, dry goods, and dairy during sales by watching flyers, using coupons, reward cards, online apps, and scanning the ads.
In closing, good nutrition is the most important thing you can give your baby when you are pregnant. High-quality food and nutrition are instrumental for growth, development, cognition and future behavior. And yes you can eat healthy for your baby – even on a budget.