Dietary Recommendations for Pregnancy

  • Posted by Dr. Jay Gordon

I see most of the couples in my practice prior to their delivery. I like to do a prenatal discussion fairly early but most people come in during the last month or two of pregnancy. One reason I’d like to talk earlier is to discuss the best pregnancy diet. There is excellent medical and common sense evidence that the best nutrition during pregnancy gives the best outcome. Specifically, moms with any family history of allergies should avoid dairy products. There is not much disagreement in the medical literature about the benefits of a dairy-free diet to the developing fetus. Allergies are increased by prenatal exposure to this allergenic protein. Whatever you do, avoid the outdated advice to increase your milk intake during your pregnancy.

Avoid alcohol and other noxious chemicals. We know that medium to large amounts of wine, beer or liquor can seriously damage a baby and produce Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. It’s now recognized that lesser amounts of alcohol at critical stages of pregnancy lead to “Fetal Alcohol Effect.” If we know this, why would you drink at all during pregnancy?

The warning signs in super markets about swordfish telling pregnant women to limit the number of servings per month would lead me to a similar conclusion: Why eat any mercury-containing fish at all?

Stay active, eat as well as you can focusing on meals with lots of fruits, veggies, reasonable amounts of healthy protein, avoid alcohol, decrease or eliminate dairy products to have the healthiest pregnancy and the healthiest baby.