A Healthy Diet In Pregnancy

A Healthy Diet In Pregnancy

Eating healthy in pregnancy is important for both mother and baby. Here we will explain why this is important, what healthy eating actually means, what deficiencies are more common, what foods you should be careful eating and which foods are unsafe.

We highly recommend you take a supplement from conception stage, throughout pregnancy and after. Taking during conception means your nutritional potential is maximised for a great starting point but it also means you are taking folic acid already and not waiting until you miss your period and realise you are pregnant. This delay in taking folic acid can put your baby at risk of developing neural tube defects like spina bifida so it is very important. We advise taking after pregnancy because labour often results in blood loss and so taking iron is essential for a speedy recovery. Plus, if you are breastfeeding, the extra nutritional support for you and baby can continue.


Food for Mother & Baby

A good diet is essential for baby's growth and development but also for supporting the mothers needs during such a demanding time on her body. 

Having a diet low in calories or missing essential vitamins and nutrients can cause expecting mothers to feel fatigued and exhausted, become anaemic (low haemaglobin), have headaches or other symptoms that could be avoided. It is so important for expecting mothers to not only enjoy their pregnancy but feel great during it as well. Nutrition is a key part of making sure this happens.

We highly recommend a very varied diet. Not only does this help ensure you get a wide range of nutritional benefits, but also because we now know that a varied diet has other important benefits on gut health (the trillions of bacteria in our bowels) which in turn help us to digest our food but also other things like supporting our immune system and so much more. A varied diet is the best kind of diet so try to avoid excluding foods.

Some research also suggests that the food we eat can have an impact on not only baby's growth in the womb but also later on in life. Whilst more evidence is needed, it is mostly accepted that a varied diet is advantageous to your baby as well.

If of course you have issues with certain foods like allergies or food sensitivities, you should continue to avoid those foods.


Vitamin and Mineral deficiency in Pregnancy

During pregnancy, mothers have an increased need for nutrients to help support baby. This can lead to expectant mothers to become depleted on important vitamins and minerals which in turn can cause problems to both baby and mother.

The more common deficiencies we see are;

  • iron deficiency
  • B12 deficiency
  • Vitamin D

You can read more about these deficiencies in our learn section and find out how you can help prevent these.


Foods you should be careful with, limit or avoid;

  • mould-ripened soft cheeses with a white coating on the outside, such as brie, camambert and chèvre (unless cooked until steaming hot)
  • soft blue cheeses such as danish blue, gorgonzola and roquefort (unless cooked until steaming hot)
  • any unpasteurised cows' milk, goats' milk or sheep's milk
  • any foods made from unpasteurised milk, such as soft goats' cheese
  • Liver, pate, raw or uncooked meat
  • Eggs are fine even scrambled if they are British Lion eggs otherwise onkly eat if they are fully cooked like in baking or a hard boiled egg
  • Limit fish to twice a week - some fish contain mercury and too much can be harmful


Always be careful where you get good reliable and trustworthy information online. You can find more helpful information from your midwife or on the NHS website.