Eating organic food is always best when you are pregnant. During organic farming, farmers use natural methods to grow and raise produce and livestock, so they’re not filled with toxins that are dangerous for your baby. Here are some healthy types of organic foods to eat while pregnant.
Eat Organic Beef, Eggs and Poultry for Protein During Pregnancy
Eating beef, eggs and poultry is an excellent way for you to get protein when you are pregnant. Getting enough protein is especially important during the second trimester of pregnancy when your baby is growing organs, fingers, toes and hair.
Unfortunately, industrial beef, eggs and poultry are not fit for pregnant women to eat as they are filled with harmful growth hormones and antibiotics. Farmers use growth hormones to increase the size of their livestock, and they use the antibiotics to manage infections and diseases in the animals. These antibiotics are largely to blame for antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria.
When you are pregnant, everything you eat, your baby eats too, so growth hormones and antibiotics are not the kinds of things you want to put inside of your body. When these chemicals cross the placenta, they can put your fetus at risk for a host of developmental problems.
As if the excessive use of chemicals is not enough, farmers also mix animal feed with the byproducts of dead livestock because it is an inexpensive source of protein. Cows are vegetarian by nature, so feeding them food that contains animal byproducts is unnatural.
The standards for organic farming are far more stringent than those of industrial farming. Organic farmers are not allowed to use growth hormones or add dead animal parts to the animal feed.
And antibiotics are only used in livestock when they are sick.
Eat Organic Vegetables for Iron, Calcium and Folic Acid While Pregnant
Eating a variety of vegetables during pregnancy can help you get the iron, calcium and folic acid you need to maintain you health and provide nutritional support to your unborn baby. Calcium is essential for muscle growth and development of healthy bones.
If you don’t get enough calcium during pregnancy, your baby will rob from your body’s calcium stores and leave you with weakened bones. Iron helps to produce hemoglobin and transport oxygen to the cells. Low levels of iron in the body can leave you tired, weak and pale.
It is recommended that a woman add folic acid to her diet before she conceives. Folic acid is one of the most important nutrients to have in the beginning stages of your pregnancy to reduce the risk of having a child born with spina bifida.
Although most of your folic acid intake will likely come from prenatal vitamins, it is still important that you eat plenty of foods that contain this nutrient.
Commercially grown vegetables are riddled with synthetic pesticides, herbicides and fungicides to help control pests and reduce diseases in crops. Industrial farmers prefer using chemicals on their vegetables because it is more cost effective than natural methods of preventing diseases and pests.
Any type of synthetic chemical in your body is not healthy for your fetus. So if possible, the produce you eat during pregnancy should be “certified organic,” meaning they are free of pesticides and other chemical additives.
What if I Can’t Afford to Buy Organic All the Time?
If you are working on a shoestring budget and can’t afford to buy all of your foods organic, buy the ones that pose the biggest threat to your unborn baby’s health. These foods include meats, poultry, eggs, lettuce, bell peppers, kale, spinach, celery and potatoes.
Eating organic meat, poultry, eggs and vegetables throughout your pregnancy will ensure your unborn baby gets the safe nutritional support he needs to grow healthy and strong.