Work deadlines, shopping trips, and rides to and from sports practice don’t stop just because you’re pregnant. These snacks are not only quick and easy to fix, they’re packed with essential nutrition for pregnancy.
Green Power Smoothie
Doctors and dietitians agree, we all need more greens in our life! Start by blending 1 cup of well-rinsed baby kale or spinach with a stalk of celery, and apple juice to taste. Blend with a generous helping of ice and take this refreshing smoothie with you as you head out in the morning.
Supplementing your diet with the folic acid (folate) and iron found in leafy greens is a great way to keep mom and baby healthy. Greens like kale and other darker lettuces are great for digestion and regularity. They contain generous portions of Omega-3 fatty acidss (fats essential to neurological development) and Vitamin A (supports baby’s embryonic growth as well as post-partum tissue repair).
Peppers and Hummus
There’s something so satisfying about a snack that packs a serious crunch. Before you leave for work and other obligations, slice up a bell pepper and pair it with a generous helping of your favorite hummus. The tart and spicy flavors of the pepper are a great compliment to a creamy and nutty hummus dip.
Did you know that one red bell pepper actually has more vitamin C than an orange? The red peppers’ vitamin C helps you absorb iron and that’s essential for a healthy pregnancy. Bell peppers are bursting with antioxidants and many other vitamins. Hummus is a much healthier choice for vegetable dips. It’s packed with protein and healthy fats that will fend off hunger and help with weight management.
Summer Strawberry Salad
Give your salads a sweet addition with sliced strawberries. Start with a base of spinach and leafy greens, add slices of grilled chicken, and lightly toasted walnuts. Top with your favorite vinaigrette dressing and plenty of sliced, ripe strawberries. You’ve got a quick salad that’s refreshing, sweet, and packed with essential nutrition.
Strawberries low in calories and high in taste. High in fiber, strawberries fight constipation and make you feel full. Grilled chicken provides lean protein crucial for baby’s brain development (be sure that the chicken is fully cooked!). Just one handful of toasted walnuts is packed with enough healthy fats like Omega 3s.
Mixed nuts are a super-rich source of healthy fats, calories, and fiber. Most mixed nuts can be purchased in bulk from your neighborhood grocery store and are a great snack-on-the-go for pregnant women. High in both polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fat, the American Heart Association recommends mixed nuts as a healthy food for their natural ability to lower “bad” cholesterol levels in your body.
There are plenty of ways to include these delicious pieces of produce, lean proteins, and healthy fats in your meals and snacks with very little time or effort. For more information on how nutrition and diet relate to your pregnancy, contact the experts at Pacific Women’s Center.