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Every Pregnant woman needs few essential nutrient supplements during First Trimester that helps the pregnant lady to be strong enough and also helps the baby’s growth. Essential nutrient supplements needed during First Trimester are Folic acids, Calcium, Iron and Protein.
Also known as folate and when the nutrient is found in foods, folic acid is a B vitamin. This nutrient is crucial in helping to prevent birth defects during the development of baby’s brain and spinal cord, which are known as neural tube defects.
Normally, the required folic acid cannot be obtained from diet alone. It has to be supplemented by tablets. Hence, it becomes absolutely important to take this vitamin supplement containing 400 micrograms of folic acid daily for one month before becoming pregnant. During pregnancy, the dose of the supplement is increased to 600 micrograms a day, quantity commonly found in a daily prenatal vitamin.
Foods which are rich in folic acid and recommended for the pregnant ladies are leafy green vegetables, fortified or enriched cereals, breads and pastas, beans, citrus fruits which gives complete the package of folic acid. Among the non-vegetarian foods, liver is rich in folic acid.
Calcium is an essential nutrient during first trimester pregnancy build a baby’s bones and teeth. The amount of Calcium the baby needs will be drawn from the pregnant mother from what is stored in her bones, leaving her deficient in calcium and with the onward pregnancy duration, the need for calcium increases further. Hence the nutrient must be supplemented to meet the extra requirements during pregnancy.
Vitamin D fortified dairy products are another nutrient which works with calcium in proper and healthy development of baby’s bones and teeth. Foods which contain calcium naturally are milk, yogurt, cheese, calcium-fortified juices and foods, sardines or salmon with bones, some leafy greens, finger millet.
A Pregnant woman needs 27 milligrams of iron a day. The extra amount of iron is needed in order to make more blood so that the oxygen is supplied to the baby. Deficit iron levels during pregnancy can lead to many health problems, including anemia, which results in exhaustion and fatigue and also increases the risk of infections.
Including Vitamin C foods, while consuming iron-rich foods, helps in better absorption of iron into the body. Like, having a glass of orange juice while having spinach based/ iron-fortified dishes for breakfast.
Foods such as dates, green leafy vegetables, meat, poultry, fish, dried beans and peas, iron-fortified cereal, are rich in Iron. Pomegranate can be a regular too.
Proteins, the body building nutrient, are required in good amounts, but extra supplement is not needed everytime as diet having protein-rich foods will be more than enough. Most women don’t require additional intake, thus. But, it Is a must to ensure enough protein is consumed as they are needed to build the baby’s organs including that of brain and heart.
Foods such as rice, brown rice, egg, chicken meat, meat, poultry, fish, dried beans and peas, eggs, nuts, pulses, tofu contains more protein with it.