Breakfast - as the old cliche goes - is the most important meal of the day. Cliche or not, eating a healthy, nutritious breakfast is one of the best ways to start your day. However, during your prenatal months, there are some important considerations to keep in mind when preparing your breakfast.
In this week’s article, we provide some tips on what kinds of breakfast foods to avoid. We also offer some suggestions for a healthy, well-balanced breakfast suitable for both you and your growing baby. Take a look.
Cut back on the Coffee
For many of us, a cup of hot coffee is inextricably linked to an enjoyable breakfast. Although one or two cups of coffee is perfectly safe during your prenatal months, don’t go overboard. It’s important to remember that too much caffeine can be problematic for you and your growing baby. No more than two cups (around 200 mg of caffeine) is recommended a day.
Avoid Unpasteurised Orange Juice
Orange juice is a delicious and nutritious staple of many breakfasts. However, pregnant women should be careful not to consume unpasteurised orange juice. This is because orange juice that hasn’t been pasteurised can contain harmful bacterias that could hurt you or your baby. Although most types of orange juice available for purchase have been pasteurised, some types - such as those sold in farmer’s markets, at health-food stores, or other shops - might not be. Always check the labels beforehand to make sure.
Be Cautious with Dairy
Again, eggs are a fundamental part of many breakfast recipes. While eggs are perfectly safe to consume, in most cases, it’s important to avoid runny or undercooked eggs, like poached eggs. This is because raw eggs pose a risk of salmonella.
Similarly, it’s best to avoid most types of soft cheeses, as these are usually made up of unpasteurised milk. That means foregoing that cream cheese on your bagels in the morning.
Why not try a bowl of mixed fresh fruit for breakfast? Fresh fruit is packed full of essential vitamins and nutrients, as well as some much-needed fiber. Fiber will help aid your digestion and will help you feeling energetic for longer throughout the day.
Calcium plays an important role in any diet, but particularly so during your pregnancy, because it will help your baby’s physical development. You can boost your daily intake through most types of dairy foods, such as pasteurised milk and cheese. Another great option is having a bowl of yoghurt for breakfast. Try adding some fresh fruits and nuts, and you’ll have a healthy, delicious start to your day.
When choosing breakfast cereals, cereals containing whole grains will keep you feeling full for longer, and provide you with a nutritious dose of fibre and folate. Whole grain oatmeal and other whole grain-based cereals are highly recommended, for this reason. Similarly, aim for whole grain bread over white or whole meal. If toast is a favourite breakfast food, by ensuring your bread is made up of healthy whole-grains, you’ll be doing both you and your baby a favour.