Moms-to-be should watch how much sugar they have in their diets, but there are a lot of things they shouldn't leave out. We all know that milk builds strong bones, but for expectant mothers, milk and other sources of calcium can help them be on their way to a healthier pregnancy. For little ones after they're born, calcium is a vital part of the growing process.
In a little over two months, Michelle Crutchfield will deliver her first child. She's learned a lot about what she should, and should not be eating and drinking. One of the thing she needs most, is the thing that's making her the most sick. "For some reason when I would drink milk it would make me sick to my stomach, especially in the mornings," Michelle says. "It would seem if I drank it after lunch it would be okay."
So Michelle has to keep a close eye on how much calcium she's getting, and makes sure she always take a pre-natal vitamin. Jill McGruder, a registered nurse, says, "When you're pregnant along with when you're nursing it's kind of like parenting. The baby gets it first and you get what's left over."
It's recommended that pregnant women get 1200 mg of calcium a day, which equals out to around three glasses of milk. It's a diet that Jill followed when she was pregnant with her daughter, Bailey. "In the earlier months of pregnancy is when the baby does a majority of the overall development, and then it's basically putting on pounds the rest of the pregnancy and finishing development," Jill says.
And it's a diet that shouldn't stop after you have your little one. If you're nursing, your calcium can decrease considerably, and calcium provides the nutrients babies need to help their bones and brains develop.
Michelle still has a few months to go before she has her little one, but until then, she's trying to get all the calcium she needs. "I don't really know if I get 1200 mg a day, but I try to get a lot through milk, cheese, or yogurt." Don't forget about Vitamin D. Your body needs plenty of Vitamin D to absorb the calcium.