Pregnancy is an incredible experience, but also a time where you may find yourself questioning every decision you make regarding the health and growth of your little human. When it comes to snacking during pregnancy, it’s important to focus on the quality of the snacks you consume. Whether you are at home with little ones or spending your days at work, we are here to give you tips and ideas to help make snacking during pregnancy easier!
Importance of Snacking During Pregnancy
Pregnancy is a unique time during a woman’s life when additional demands on your body will take place to support the growth and development of the little human growing inside of you. This will require you to increase the intake of certain nutrients and additional energy to support a thriving environment for you and your baby (2). Choosing snacks that are a good source of macronutrients (fat, protein, and carbohydrates), and micronutrients such as folate (folic acid), iron, vitamin D, calcium, and omega-3 fatty acids is especially important for the health of you and your baby (1,2). The snacks listed below all provide different nutrients in varying amounts; it’s important to try changing it up throughout your pregnancy in order to keep it fun and to add a variety of nutrients to your days!
Ideas For Snaking During Pregnancy
- Oatmeal topped with pumpkin seeds, cashews, and strawberries
- Baked potato topped with plain Greek yogurt and chives
- Omelet with spinach and feta cheese
- Canned salmon sandwich with whole grain bread
- Add: avocado and dark leafy greens
- Tortilla chips with guacamole
- Cottage cheese with fresh or frozen berries
- Sprinkle with hemp hearts and chia seeds
- Banana with peanut butter
- Apple slices dipped in almond butter
- Pita with hummus and raw veggies
- Whole grain crackers with full fat cheese
- Almonds and dried apricots
- Avocado toast with sliced cucumbers
- Raw veggies with hummus
- Whole grain cereal with milk
- Homemade muffins (check out this recipe for Morning Glory Muffins: http://mamababynutrition.ca/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/Morning-Glory-Muffins-2-1.pdf)
Some Things to Consider
- Use up leftovers from the day before! Snacks don’t need to be complicated!
- Pick a couple of different snack ideas each week, add those items to your grocery list, prep them all at once into individual containers so they’re ready to grab-and-go.
- Bake or cook double and freeze in preparation for the fourth trimester. You will thank yourself when you wake up in the middle of the night to feed your baby and find some frozen chili or morning glory muffins to snack on.
- If nutritional requirements seem overwhelming, you can learn more about folate (folic acid) and iron needs during pregnancy. Check out these links: Folate (https://mamababynutrition.ca/2020/10/28/folic-acid-requirements-for-pregnancy/), and Iron (https://mamababynutrition.ca/2020/08/11/meeting-iron-needs-during-pregnancy/).
The Bottom Line
Your nutritional needs throughout pregnancy change based on the developmental stage of your baby, and your taste buds and cravings may change too. Energy and nutritional needs are important, but so is your enjoyment of snacking while pregnant. Have fun and get creative while trying new snack ideas and recipes!
- Unlock Food [Internet]. Canada: Dietitians of Canada; c2020 [updated 2018 Aug 16, cited 2020 Nov 19]. Eating for a healthy pregnancy; [about 5 screens]. Available from: https://www.unlockfood.ca/en/Articles/Pregnancy/Eating-for-a-Healthy-Pregnancy.aspx
- Beluska-Turkan, K., Korczak, R., Hartell, B., Moskal, K., Maukonen, J., Alexander, D. E., Salem, N., Harkness, L., Ayad, W., Szaro, J., Zhang, K., & Siriwardhana, N. (2019). Nutritional gaps and supplements in the first 1000 days. Nutrients, 11(12), 2891. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11122891
~ Written by Rebecca Woods