Pregnancy Diet Recipes and Menus
More on the Pregnancy Diet
Pregnancy Diet Center
Pregnancy Diet: Tips for Meeting Increased Iron Needs Video
The Pre-Pregnancy Plan
Experts recommend that all women aged 19 to 50 get 1,000 mg of calcium to keep bones strong. (Teens and older women need more: 1,300 and 1,200 mg, respectively.) Many women fall short of meeting the recommended daily intake. And while calcium needs actually do not increase during pregnancy, this is a time when getting enough of this mineral is even more critical. Your baby needs calcium to build healthy teeth and bones and if your diet isn’t supplying enough, your body draws from the mineral stores in your bones, putting you at greater risk for osteoporosis later.
Dairy foods are the best sources of calcium. A cup of milk, or a 6-to-8 ounce serving of yogurt, supplies about 300 mg of calcium—so three servings of dairy daily will provide the recommended intake. Some green leafy vegetables, such as kale and collard greens, and canned salmon (bones included) are also good sources. Calcium-fortified foods, such as orange juice, breakfast cereals and soymilk, can also help you get more calcium, especially if you don’t eat dairy. If you don’t get enough calcium from foods, you may need to take a calcium supplement.