Diet in pregnancy - third trimester
How much to eat
The advised calorie intake is 2,200 per day during the last trimester and should include essential fatty acids, which boost the baby’s brain development.
How it helps your baby and your birth
Eating certin foods can have a really positive effect on your baby, your pregnancy and the birth!
Pregnancy and Fertility Expert Zita West says, “there is evidence that omega-3 may help prevent pregnancy-induced hypertension, and reduce the risk of premature birth, increases a baby’s birth weight, improves its IQ and visual and cognitive brain function and also helps prevent against heart disease.”
What to eat
What to avoid
-Fatty Acids: There are two types: linoleic acid (omega-6) and linolenic acid (omega-3).
- Omega-6: seeds and oils
- Omega-3: linseed, pumpkin seeds and oily fish.
-Slow-releasing carbohydrates: wholemeal bread, pasta, cereals, bananas
- Sugary food
- Fizzy drinks
- Acidic drinks such as grapefruit juice
Midwife Nikki Khan, says “Pregnant women should opt for slow-releasing carbohydrates, wholemeal bread, pasta, cereals, bananas, rather than sweet processed food. In the last few weeks of pregnancy make sure your main meal of the day has good energy food.
"Going into labour, women will need snacks every hour. I always tell ladies to pack a tube of Dextrose tablets. You might not feel like eating, but a suck on a tablet and a squirt of water on the face can be very refreshing between contractions.
"Avoid sugary fizzy drinks - they can make you feel sick. And avoid fruit juice that is too acidic such as grapefruit. Grape juice is good as it’s non-acidic and high in sugar for a quick fix. Isotonic drinks can also be useful - preparing for labour is a bit like a running a marathon.”
Words by Naomi Majid