Breastfeeding is the best nutrition for healthy growth and development of babies. Good maternal nutrition helps sustain an adequate supply and quality of breast milk. Unnecessary introduction of bottle-feeding, partially or fully, or of other complementary foods and drinks may have a negative impact on breastfeeding, which may be irreversible. Consult your doctor and consider the social and financial implications before deciding to use breast milk substitutes or if you have difficulty breastfeeding. Follow usage, preparation and storage instructions of breast milk substitutes or of other complementary foods and drinks carefully as improper or unnecessary use may pose a health hazard.
Avoid caffeinated and alcoholic drinks as they can cause miscarriage and damage to the foetal brain.
Foods must be thoroughly cooked to avoid bacterial contamination. Do not eat raw fish or meat.
Calcium helps build your baby's bones and teeth. It also supports the healthy development of your baby’s heart, muscles and nerves. Good food sources of calcium are milk and dairy products. Avoid unpasteurised milk and dairy products as they may contain bacteria that can harm your child. Your doctor may also ask you to take calcium tablets as supplement. Daily Calcium Requirements: 1200-1500 milligrams
Iron helps your body to make more haemoglobin (red blood cells). It also supports placental growth. Good food sources of iron are fish, meat (chicken and lean beef), beans, vegetables and grains. High amount of vitamin A is harmful to your child, so try to avoid liver products. Also, avoid swordfish, marlin, shark and tuna as they are known to contain high levels of mercury, which is also harmful to you and your child. Daily Iron Requirements: 27 milligrams
Protein helps in the physical development of your child. Good food sources of protein are beans, lean meat, poultry, fish, eggs, milk and dairy products. Avoid swordfish, marlin, shark and tuna as they are known to contain high levels of mercury which is harmful to you and your child. Daily Protein Requirements: 80-90 grams
Folic Acid (Folate)
Folic acid reduces your baby's risk of defects such as cleft lip, cleft palate, heart defects and neural tube defects (e.g. spina bifida). Good food sources of folic acid are green vegetables (e.g. cabbage, beans and broccoli) and fruits such as bananas and oranges. Daily Folic Acid Requirements: 600 micrograms
Vitamin B lowers your baby’s risk of foetal deformities and congenital heart disease. It also helps relieve your nausea and supports your baby’s developing brain and nervous system. Good food sources of vitamin B are fortified breads, cereal, whole grain products, beans and peas.
Your daily intake of Vitamin B is as follows:
Daily Vitamin B Requirements:
Vitamin B1 (thiamine): 1.4 milligrams
Vitamin B2 (riboflavin): 1.4 milligrams
Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine): 1.9 milligrams
Vitamin B12 (cobalamin): 2.6 micrograms
Vitamin C promotes tissue repair, bone growth and repair, and healthy skin. Excellent sources of vitamin C are citrus fruits (such as lemons, oranges, and grapefruits) and vegetables (such as broccoli and cabbages). Daily Vitamin C Requirements: 85 milligrams
Vitamin D helps maintain optimum levels of calcium and phosphorus in your body. Good food sources of vitamin D are fish liver oil, fatty fish, eggs, milk and cereal products. Daily Vitamin D Requirements: 200 IUs (or 5 micrograms)
Choline boosts your baby's brainpower and protects him against neural tube defects such as spina bifida. Good food sources of choline are spinach, poultry products, beans and fish. However, try to avoid swordfish, marlin, shark and tuna because they contain high levels of mercury. Daily Choline Requirements: 450 milligrams