Nutrition: Getting Enough Calcium During Pregnancy
Calcium is a very important mineral, necessary not only for the development of your baby's bones, but also for maintaining your own bone health - both of which are key concerns in maintaining good pregnancy nutrition. Many dairy foods can be high in saturated fat and calories, and eating a lot of them can really increase your caloric intake. Since pregnant women only need an extra 300 calories each day, it's important to limit your intake of high-fat dairy products.
The good news is that there are plenty of low-fat dairy products that will help you meet your calcium needs without exceeding your calorie requirements.
When choosing low-fat, low-calorie dairy products, look for food labels that say "fat-free," "low-fat," or "reduced fat." For milk, the best choice is skim or one percent, which contains zero to three grams of fat and 90-110 calories per serving, but is still rich in calcium. Yogurt and frozen yogurt are also a good choice, though you should be aware that added fruit and flavors can add up to 200 extra calories per serving. Cheeses are usually loaded with fat, so opt for fat-free and reduced fat cheese varieties such as part-skim mozzarella, low-fat cottage cheese or two percent milk cheddar.
Finally, just like your mother always said, eat your vegetables. Broccoli and other dark, leafy greens such as turnip greens, spinach and kale are also good sources of calcium.