National Nutrition Week: Three quick tips by Kareena Kapoor Khan and her nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar to all moms-to-be
The actress also opened up about her pregnancy and do’s and don’ts in her book, Kareena Kapoor Khan's Pregnancy Bible: The Ultimate Manual for Moms-To-Be, which is also available as an audiobook
All moms-to-be would agree that they are advised so much and by so many. Do this and don’t do this. Eat papaya! Don’t eat papaya. Eat for two! Don’t overeat! And the list is never-ending. Here are some quick suggestions by Kareena Kapoor Khan and her nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar.
We all have seen Kareena during her pregnancies, inspiring all mothers-to-be to shine as much as the diva herself. Kareena even went on to write a book titled Kareena Kapoor Khan's Pregnancy Bible: The Ultimate Manual for Moms-To-Be, in which Kareena and her celebrity nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar offer simple tips for expectant mothers and address common concerns about maintaining good health during pregnancy. On this National Nutrition Week, Kareena Kapoor Khan and her nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar share some nuggets of wisdom on how to eat well, the top three foods to have in each trimester, and exercises that can be included and avoided during pregnancy to all the moms-to-be.
Eating the right way
Rujuta: Eat ghar ka khana as much as possible — the food you have grown up with — and keep your meals small. This is especially the case during pregnancy. However, your health will depend on not just the food you eat, but also on how well your body absorbs these nutrients.
- Before having breakfast, indulge in fresh fruit and a mix of nuts and dried fruits. Nuts are good sources of iron and dried fruits help in absorbing them.
- Have a mid-morning snack that keeps you hydrated and energised. For instance, nimbu pani, peanut chikki, sherbet, etc. can be considered.
- Serve dahi with your lunch every day and ensure to have a spoon or two of ghee. It helps with the post-lunch energy slump and hunger cravings.
- Include a late afternoon snack that can be consumed at 3:30 pm and then around 6:00 pm. This could include anything from seasonal fruit, fresh fruit milkshake to ladoo or any homemade snack.
- Dinner should be a light, easy-to-digest meal that should be consumed no later than 8:30 pm. Stick to rice-based dishes and well-cooked vegetables. Ideally, non-vegetarian food can be included in lunch, considering the ease of digestion.
- After dinner, have a glass of milk as it can help with better sleep and give the additional dose of calcium and protein.
Kareena: “When I first began working with my nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar, she got me to start the morning with a banana and I've stuck to that. It is excellent for your iron and potassium requirements. So, my day always begins with one banana and five almonds. This has never changed, whether or not I'm pregnant. Breakfast was typically poha, upma or two idlis. It is the most basic Indian diet and I can't live without it. I stopped all caffeine during Taimur's time. My first pregnancy and I wanted it to be 100% good. I went mostly caffeine-free again for my second pregnancy. But I did have half a cup of tea in the morning. I couldn't do without my morning chai.”
Move a bit and stay healthy
Rujuta: Pregnancy may seem like the quintessential time to sit back and relax. But unless there are complications, it's a good idea to move and exercise to stay in shape and also prevent unnecessary pain. Maintaining a good exercise program during pregnancy can help you stay healthy and feel your best.
Kareena: Exercising through pregnancy has multiple benefits, including improving stamina, reducing gestational diabetes, and aiding in postpartum recovery. Exercising through your pregnancy is not only good for you and your baby; it helps to keep up your strength post-delivery as well. Stay well hydrated.
- Avoid lying down on your back
- Avoid standing still for long periods
- Wear the right gear that supports your body
- Avoid getting overheated and breathless
Essential nutrients for you and your baby
Rujuta: Through your pregnancy, you will read about all the nutrients important for you and the baby. It might make your head a little dizzy. Here are the five essential nutrients your body needs during this time. Remember, eating a balanced home-cooked Indian diet and seasonal and local food will meet most of these needs.
Folic acid: Folic acid is critical, especially during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, because it prevents neural tube defects in the baby, which affect the spine, spinal cord, and brain. Foliage-rich foods include everything from lentils to beets to bananas, and nuts and seeds.
Protein: Proteins are the bodybuilders that help develop and repair cells, muscles, tissue, and organs. It is vital to the growth and development of the baby. Dals, milk products, eggs, meat and fish, nuts and seeds, and whole grains are good protein sources.
Calcium: It strengthens the baby's bones, muscles, deep heart, and nodes. If enough calcium is not consumed, the growing baby will deplete your body's resources, which means you're risking bone loss and osteoporosis later in life. Calcium-rich foods include all dairy products, ragi, and sesame seeds.
Iron: The body uses iron to make extra blood for your baby and you, transfer oxygen to both of you, and keep your RBC count up. A good RBC count keeps your energy levels up. Fish, meat, eggs, spinach, dried fruits, and sesame seeds are all iron-rich.
Pro-tip by Kareena Kapoor Khan: My only after-dinner sweet treat and that too, not every day, would be simple homemade yogurt in which I mix chopped dates, cashews, pistachios, and raisins. It was good for me and for my baby and was great for dealing with a spot of indigestion too.”