Proper nutrition is such an important part of achieving a healthy pregnancy, and one of the most easily modifiable behaviors. Studies have found that women who eat a diet rich in vegetables, fruits, and whole grains, and those that consume plenty of water are less likely to deliver prematurely.
Most pregnant women need an additional 300 calories each day, although the exact amount depend on your pre-pregnancy weight. Women should make sure that they are eating foods from each of the five food groups, choosing foods that are high in protein, and putting as much color on their plates as possible. Additionally, staying well hydrated is one of the most important things you can do to prevent some of the minor discomforts of pregnancy. Pregnant women should aim to drink at least 8 glasses of water every day.
The My Plate Checklist Calculator is a great tool for pregnant and breastfeeding moms who want to monitor their caloric intake and meet their food group targets.
The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) provides Federal grants to States for supplemental foods, health care referrals, and nutrition education for low-income pregnant, breastfeeding, and non-breastfeeding postpartum women, and to infants and children up to age five who are found to be at nutritional risk. For more information or to enroll in the WIC program, please contact your state WIC contact.