Holistic Nutrition For Pregnancy: During The Second Trimester

Holistic Nutrition For Pregnancy: During The Second Trimester | Online Nutrition Training Course & Diplomas | Edison Institute of Nutrition

During the second trimester of pregnancy, maintaining a healthy, well balanced diet can be beneficial for both mother and baby.

A healthy diet plays a vital role in the prevention of pregnancy and birth related complications, such as:

  • Preterm delivery
  • High blood pressure
  • Preeclampsia

As a student at Edison Institution Of Nutrition, you will learn about the links between proper nutrition and pregnancy as part of your holistic nutrition training.

Last time, we explored how to use holistic nutrition for pregnancy during the first trimester, so let’s take a look at the next phase of pregnancy – the second trimester.

In this article, we’ll go over some basic facts about nutrition and pregnancy as well as learn about the important minerals for fetal development during the second trimester.

If you yourself are considering a new career as a holistic nutritionist, this article can help you understand how to help your clients through pregnancy.

However, if you yourself are pregnant, you can also use this to gain deeper insight into how you can give your baby the best shot at a happy, healthy life through nutrition.

Keep reading to learn more.

What Happens During The Second Trimester?

The second trimester of occurs between weeks 14 and 26 of pregnancy.

This trimester is often referred to as the “golden period” of pregnancy due to the general improvement of many unpleasant side effects common during the first trimester, such as nausea and fatigue.

However, the second trimester of pregnancy may also introduce a variety of new symptoms, including:

  • Back and abdominal pain
  • Leg cramps
  • Constipation
  • Heart burn

Additionally, your baby’s movements may also be felt for the first time during the second trimester.

This generally occurs around the 16 to 20 week mark.

Caloric Intake During The Second Trimester

During the first trimester of pregnancy, caloric intake isn’t as big of an issue.

However, your body will need more calories during the second trimester of pregnancy.

On average, your caloric intake should increase by 300 calories per day during the second and third trimesters.

Important Nutrients During The Second Trimester

Several vitamins, minerals, proteins, fats, and carbohydrates are beneficial for both mother and baby during the second trimester.

Some of the most beneficial nutrients during the second trimester include the following.

However, it’s important to note that everybody is different, and you and your baby will have unique needs that can’t be covered in a blog article.

As a result, it’s always a good idea to speak to a holistic nutritionist to make sure you’re getting what you need, and giving your baby what they need.

important minerals for fetal development during the second trimester | Online Nutrition Training Course & Diplomas | Edison Institute of Nutrition

1. Iron

Iron helps oxygen move around the body.

Therefore, iron is vital for the baby’s oxygen supply.

During pregnancy, an iron deficiency may lead to certain complications including anemia and premature birth.

Unfortunately, iron deficiency is more common before the age of menopause anyway, since heavy period flow takes the iron in your blood with it.

But iron deficiency during pregnancy is even more common, since you have a greater need to produce blood.

Be sure to eat plenty of iron rich foods, including red meats, shellfish, dark leafy greens, pumpkin seeds, sweet potato, and lentils.

2. Calcium

Calcium plays an important role in the development of your baby’s bones and teeth.

Additionally, calcium helps baby’s muscles, nerves, and circulatory system to operate normally.

While you can take calcium supplements, in most cases they aren’t necessary if you’re eating a healthy diet.

Instead, be sure to include things like dark leafy greens, soy, almonds, Brazil nuts, baked beans, dark chicken or turkey such as leg meat, red meat and oatmeal.

However, calcium supplements are sometimes recommended, such as if you have osteoporosis, a broken bone, or poor digestion that makes it difficult to absorb them.

3. Protein

Protein aids in your baby’s brain and tissue development.

Additionally, protein is important for the growth of your uterus and breasts.

Protein is generally not difficult to come by if you’re eating a balanced diet.

However, some of the best sources of protein include:

  • All meats
  • Eggs
  • Soy and soy products
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Beans
  • Peas
  • Lentils

4. Vitamin B9 (Folate)

Vitamin B9, or folate, and B12 are essential during pregnancy for the prevention of neuro tube defects like spina bifida.

Additionally, current research points to vitamin B9 as potential prevention against the development of congenital heart defects.

Beyond pregnancy, vitamin B9 has many other health benefits as well, including keeping your hair healthy, raising your mood, reducing depression and more.

You can find vitamin B9 in broccoli, Brussels sprouts, dark leafy greens, chickpeas, kidney beans, and peas.

5. Omega 3 Fatty Acids

Omega 3 fatty acids support healthy development of the heart, brain, eyes, immune system, and central nervous system.

Additionally, research points to omega 3 fatty acids as a potential preventative for premature birth, preeclampsia, and postpartum depression.

The most plentiful dietary source of DHA is fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, herring, anchovies, or whitefish.

However, these can also have a high level of mercury in them due to pollution, and that can cause harm to your baby’s developing nervous system. Best to choose small fish and avoid tuna.

As a result, you may want to opt for some alternatives like flaxseed, chia seeds, hemp seeds, seaweed, walnuts, or Brussels sprouts.

6. Vitamin D

Vitamin D helps build the baby’s bones and teeth.

The best source of daily vitamin D intake naturally is from the sun.

However, it’s difficult to get enough of it for many reasons.

First of all, the climate here in Canada is such that getting your vitamin D from the Sun is only possible during the summer months.

But even during the summer, we don’t usually spend enough time outdoors to get the vitamin D we need.

So you can either supplement with vitamin D that includes K2, or eat foods fortified with it.

7. Other Important Minerals

The above list, of course, is not exhaustive.
There are several other key minerals to include in your diet to give your baby the best shot at a healthy life, including:

  • Boron
  • Copper
  • Magnesium
  • Manganese
  • Zinc

Your holistic nutritionist can help you understand what your individual needs are.

Foods To Eat During The Second Trimester

Now that you’ve learned about the most important nutrients during the second trimester of pregnancy, you may be wondering which foods carry significant amounts of these nutrients.

Below are some recommendations.

Good sources of iron include:

  • Lean meats
  • Cooked seafood
  • Leafy green vegetables
  • Nuts
  • Beans and lentils
  • Whole grains
  • Fortified breakfast cereals

Good sources of calcium include:

  • Eggs
  • Tofu
  • White beans
  • Almonds
  • Sardines and salmon
  • Leafy greens vegetables

Good sources of protein include:

  • Lean meats
  • Nuts
  • Tofu and tempeh
  • Eggs
  • Fish
  • Peas, beans, and lentils

Good sources of vitamin B9 (folate) include:

  • Legumes, such as black eyed peas
  • Fortified breakfast cereals
  • Leafy green vegetables
  • Oranges
  • Whole grains

Good sources of omega 3 fatty acids include:

  • Oily fish, such as salmon and herring
  • Fish oil
  • Flaxseeds and chia seeds

Contact The Edison Institute Of Nutrition Today

Considering a change in your career to become a registered holistic nutritionist?

If so, we can help.

Here at the Edison Institute Of Nutrition, we offer a Diploma in Holistic Nutrition program that gives you what you need to begin practicing as a registered holistic nutritionist.
However, you’ll also find holistic nutrition CEU courses to maintain your knowledge, including:

Contact the Edison Institute of Nutrition today to find out more.