Nuts contain various essential fatty acids, fibre, protein and minerals and so are often considered to be a healthy form of snacking during pregnancy. In fact, pregnant women who are vegetarians should eat protein rich nuts on a daily basis, albeit in moderation.
Consumption of Different Nuts during Pregnancy
Almonds are a rich source of iron, calcium and Vitamin B and E which helps to support a healthy pregnancy. For example, iron is needed to prevent anemia and fatigue.
However, sometimes, they can trigger an allergic reaction. So do consult your doctor before you introduce it into your diet while you are expecting.
Also, if you choose to eat them, then opt for the packaged varieties. Raw almonds could contain salmonella that will lead to food poisoning.
Cashew nuts can cause allergic reactions. So do find out first if you are allergic to them. Cashews, when raw, also contain small amounts of urushiol. This is an oil that can cause the skin to itch, So if you do decide to eat it during your pregnancy, opt for the packaged varieties.
In case you are not allergic to them then, it could be a hugely beneficial food snack for you during your pregnancy days.
- It is an energy provider
- The Vitamin C It reduces any tissue damage and helps to combat stretch marks during pregnancy
- The monosaturated fats helps fight hypertension that is often triggered during pregnancy
- It helps in improving the hair quality during pregnancy
- It increases the amount of copper in your body. Copper helps in the development of fetal blood vessels, nervous system and heart.
Peanuts are a good source of Vitamin E and iron and protein. Unless you are allergic to peanuts, it is fine to eat them while you are pregnant. There is no evidence that peanuts or any food containing it will affect the pregnant mother-to-be or her child. In fact, some experts suggest that eating peanuts during pregnancy can reduce the chances of your child being allergic to this nut later on in life.
However, if you, or anyone in your family, has a history of being allergic to peanuts or developing allergies like asthma and eczema then it is best not to consume it while you are expecting.
The benefits of eating pistachios during pregnancy are:
- They are loaded with mono-unsaturated fatty acids. This makes them capable of lowering the bad cholesterol and increasing the good one thereby keeping the lipid levels under control when you are pregnant.
- The antioxidants boost the immunity levels in expecting mothers.
- The anti inflammatory property keeps the pregnancy related aches and pains at bay
However, if you are allergic to nuts then avoid it. It contains a compound called anacardic acid whi8ch can lead to skin itching and even more severe reactions like nausea, abdominal pain and breathing difficulty. Another compound called fructan can lead to constipation and bloating too
It is good for pregnant women because of vitamin B complex and other nutrients like folate and riboflavin. It is also one of the few non-fish sources of omega 3 fats and proteins which is good for the development of the baby’s brain and the eyes. Easting a few walnuts even after delivery is advisable as it helps to maintain a healthy milk supply.
Eating around four to five walnuts a day is alight. But anything in excess of that can cause the pounds to keep building. This is because this nut is very calorie dense. And piling up of the weight can lead to an increase in the blood sugar level.
To get the maximum benefit, do not peel the brown skin from the nut before eating. The skin has a lot of nutrients by itself.
Best Ways to Eat Nuts
- There is no need to over eat them as you would be piling on the kilos pretty fast. Especially nuts like almonds, cashews, walnuts and pistachios which are not only high in vitamins and minerals but also in the fat content.
- Once you have removed the shells from nuts like walnuts, store them in air tight containers so that they don’t go rancid.
- Roasting the nuts could make them tastier but it depletes them of their nutrients. Also, if they are oil roasted and then consumed, then it increases the amount of unhealthy calories.
- While eating nuts, choose the unsalted varieties. While a little sodium is needed by the body, any excess f it can lead to high blood pressure and also pre-eclampsia.
So go ahead and enjoy the benefits of these tasty nuts but not before you have a word with your doctor. Pregnancy, after all, is a time, when we should be very careful of what we eat.