Healthy Snacks for Pregnant Women
If you’re expecting, and you’re concerned about your diet, this is the right time to look for information. Getting the nutrients you and your baby need is fundamental during the 40 weeks of pregnancy.
Below we’ll give you some suggestions of simple and healthy snacks to enjoy during your pregnancy. Not only are they nutritious, they’re also delicious!
On the contrary, future mothers should make an effort to follow a complete diet based on proven concepts.
If a women has a healthy weight at the beginning of her pregnancy, then there’s no need to increase her caloric intake until the second trimester.
At that point, she should only add about 300 calories to her daily intake. Finally, during her third trimester, she can add a total of about 450 calories to her initial daily diet.
What nutrients does a pregnant woman need? The most important are vitamins and minerals, such as vitamins B and C, folic acid, calcium and iron.
With all of this in mind, here’s a list of healthy snacks to choose during pregnancy. We hope you enjoy them!
5 healthy snacks for pregnant women
1. Homemade cereal bars
Cereal bars are a great option for including carbohydrates in your diet. They’re healthy and nourishing. If you make your own cereal bars, you can include whatever fruit you like, such as apples, strawberries, or apricots.
Homemade cereal bars are easy to prepare: Melt 4 tablespoons of butter in a bowl and add 3 1/2 tablespoons of honey and 2/3 cup of sugar. Then, stir in 1/2 cup of oats, 2/3 cup of chopped fruit, and 1/4 cup of puffed rice.
Mix well to form a homogenous blend and place in a buttered pan. Allow to cool. Finally, cut into strips and enjoy!
2. Oatmeal with chopped banana
There are many benefits to eating oatmeal. Besides being a great source of energy, it also helps to reduce bad cholesterol and prevent constipation during pregnancy .
To prepare this hearty snack, mix 1/2 cup of oats with half a liter of hot water in a small or medium sized saucepan. Then, heat the mixture on the stove, stirring constantly until the ingredients are completely mixed.
Finally, remove the saucepan from the stove and allow to cool slightly before adding chopped bananas.
3. Fruit salad
This is one of the healthiest snack options and it’s also very easy to prepare. It’s very high in vitamins, making it a highly recommendable option during pregnancy.
The idea is to mix together a variety of chopped fruits. The best part of fruit salad is that you can make it to suit your tastes. You can add kiwi, banana, orange, strawberry, peach, pear, pineapple or whatever other fruit you like.
Another benefit of fruit salad is that you can leave it in the refrigerator for the next day.
4. Yogurt and berries
Dairy foods are a great natural source of calcium, an important nutrient during pregnancy. Yogurt with berries is one of the most popular snacks among expecting mothers.
Simply choose your favorite flavor or yogurt and stir in blueberries, raspberries, chopped strawberries, or any other fruit you wish. If you prefer homemade yogurt, search for an easy recipe online, or sift through your old family recipe box.
“Pregnant women do not need to eat for two. On the contrary, future mothers should make an effort to follow a complete diet based on proven concepts”
5. Cheese, tomato and lettuce sandwich
We can’t forget about those mothers who crave a more savory option at snack time. For you, we suggest making a light sandwich.
We recommend starting out with whole wheat bread. If you can, buy fresh farmer’s cheese. Farmer’s cheese is low in calories but high in protein and calcium. Finally, add tomato and lettuce (lettuce contains folic acid, which is key during pregnancy). Dig in!
Furthermore, you can also add sliced deli turkey. Turkey is healthy and low in fat.
More advice regarding your diet during pregnancy
While pregnant, it’s important that future mothers adopt healthy habits regarding nutrition. Some of those include:
- Eat 5 times a day. This is an essential point. If you eat breakfast, lunch, dinner and two daily snacks as part of your routine, you’ll be well-nourished. You’ll also digest your foods faster and feel less weighed down.
- Include a large quantity and variety of fruits and vegetables.
- Keep a balanced diet. No food, no matter how healthy it is, will manage to satisfy your needs on its own, nor your baby’s.
- Avoid sugars and saturated fat.
- Reduce your alcohol and caffeine intake – or avoid them altogether.
- Quit smoking and avoid second-hand smoke.
Lastly, it’s important to understand that these are general recommendations. If a woman presents any deficiencies in her nutrition, she should consult with a professional. A nutritionist can recommend a diet that will suit her specific needs.
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
- Better Health Channel. (s.f.). Pregnancy and diet. Department of Health. Victoria State Government. Consultado el 18 de mayo 2023. https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/pregnancy-and-diet#healthy-weight-gain-during-pregnancy
- Casas, R., Castro Barquero, S., & Estruch, R. (2020). Impact of sugary food consumption on pregnancy: a review. Nutrients. 12 (11): 3574. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7700555/
- Ferdousi, J., Yang, B., Chan, D., Rekic, N., Rideout, T., & Wen, X. (2022). Maternal dry bean consumption during pregnancy: distribution and nutritional outcomes. Current Developments in Nutrition. 6 (Suppl 1): 642. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9193686/
- Food Data Central. (2022). Oats, whole grain, rolled, old fashioned. U. S. Department of Agriculture. Consultado el 18 de mayo 2023. https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/2346396/nutrients
- Johns Hopkins Medicine. (s.f.). 5 snacks to eat while pregnant. Consultado el 18 de mayo 2023. https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/wellness-and-prevention/5-snack-foods-to-eat-while-pregnant
- Mayo Clinic. (2022). Pregnancy diet: focus on these essential nutrients. Consultado el 18 de mayo 2023. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/pregnancy-week-by-week/in-depth/pregnancy-nutrition/art-20045082
- My health finder. (2023). Eat healthy during pregnancy: quick tips. U. S. Department of Health and Human Services. Consultado el 18 de mayo de 2023. https://health.gov/myhealthfinder/pregnancy/nutrition-and-physical-activity/eat-healthy-during-pregnancy-quick-tips
- National Health System. (2022). Have a healthy diet in pregnancy. Consultado el 18 de mayo de 2023. https://www.nhs.uk/pregnancy/keeping-well/have-a-healthy-diet/
- U. S. Food and Drug Administration. (2018). Fruits, veggies and juices. Food safety for moms to be. Consultado el 18 de mayo 2023. https://www.fda.gov/food/people-risk-foodborne-illness/fruits-veggies-and-juices-food-safety-moms-be
- Paúles Cuesta, I. M., Sánchez Molina, M. P., Lahoz Gimeno, M., & Montoro Huguet, M. (2021). Prevalencia de sobrepeso y obesidad en embarazadas de una zona básica de salud de Huesca. Medicina Clínica Práctica, 4(1), 100152. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mcpsp.2020.100152
- National Health System 111 Wales. (2022). Pregnancy guide. Consultado el 18 de mayo de 2023. https://111.wales.nhs.uk/LiveWell/Pregnancy/FoodsToAvoid/
- World Cancer Research Fund International. Limit red and processed meat. Consultado el 18 de mayo de 2023. https://www.wcrf.org/diet-activity-and-cancer/cancer-prevention-recommendations/limit-red-and-processed-meat/
- Martínez González, N. (2021). Listeriosis y embarazo. Universidad de La Laguna. https://riull.ull.es/xmlui/handle/915/23504