The Average Jane Doe American
Let's start with the average American woman. She is 5' 4" tall and weighs in at approximately 165 lbs before getting pregnant. This woman might think she knows a bit about nutrition and diet in general as well as what to while pregnant specifically. The diet for pre-pregnancy of most American women is unhealthy at best.
What will come as a shock is that the average diet for pre-pregnancy such as fast food and diet coke, don't usually mix with a healthy outcome during pregnancy. Don't believe it? The statistics don't lie. On average 1 in 3 babies are born via C-section, the numbers of high-risk mothers are almost the same and infant mortality rates in America come in behind war-torn third world countries like Afghanistan.
What!?! Most Pregnant Women Don't Know the Right Diet for Pregnancy
There has got to be something wrong with this picture. Defensive medicine and evil intervention-prone doctors can't lay sole claim to the finger of shame. American women are eating themselves sick with an unhealthy pre-natal diet, poorly balanced pregnancy diet followed up by a postpartum diet that spirals out of control.
The basics of what to eat while pregnant are not that difficult to understand, but putting them into practice is another story.
Artificial Sweetener and Pregnancy
First things first, diet coke and pregnancy should be mutually exclusive terms and never appear in the same sentence unless it reads diet coke, or any other food item containing artificial sweetener, should never be consumed during pregnancy.
There is a laundry list of known medical conditions that are caused, exacerbated or affected by artificial sweeteners. These ill health conditions affect the mother as well as cross over the placenta into the growing fetus. Is a soda really worth the risk? No.
Make Changes in Your Diet Slowly
Second, a prenatal diet might need to undergo dramatic changes to transform into a balanced pregnancy diet espousing only the best principles of what to eat while pregnant. Pregnancy is not the time to make drastic or sudden shifts in lifestyle habits, even when they are changes for the better. Start slow.
A slow but steady approach to implement healthy eating should cut back and eventually eliminate bad foods to see lasting success. Start where you are and take each nutritional hurdle as they come. Make a list of current eating habits as compared to desirable ones. Then identify the most damaging habits on your list.
Beginning with the worst habits, eliminate them one by one. It might be easy to become discouraged; keep in mind anything worthwhile is rarely easy. With persistent effort, however, the search for changes will take root and become just another part of a routine day. The net result will be healthy weight during pregnancy and long afterward as well.
Isabel De Los Rios, nutritionist, exercise specialist, author and successful business owner has unlocked the secrets to healthy weight maintenance not only for life but during the especially crucial time of pregnancy. Learn her secrets to get the body, health and vitality you've always wanted at "What to Eat While Pregnant"