During the pregnancy, the nutritional needs for a woman's body go up as she also fuels the growth and development of the baby. Calcium, iron, protein, magnesium and omega-3 fatty acids are some of the most vital nutrients needed during pregnancy and there is one thing which is rich in all of these: the mighty chia seeds.
Chia seeds is a superfood dense in nutrition and is a powerhouse for pregnant women. They are one of the richest plant based source of omega-3 fatty acids, which help in the development of brain and nervous system of the baby and boost her immunity. Chia seeds are also rich in protein, with 2 tbsp seeds containing almost 6g of protein, which is needed for growing and repairing cells and tissues.
Chia seeds are also good source of Iron, which supports development of extra red blood cells which carry oxygen to other cells. During pregnancy the blood volume in the body increases by almost 50%, and Iron is one of the key nutrients required to support the healthy build up. Chia seeds also contains good amount of Calcium (16% RDA in 2 tbsp) which helps in growth of baby's bones and also helps protect moms from osteoporosis later in life. With 20% RDA of magnesium in one serving, Chia seeds also help protect against cramping and muscular tension.
Additionally, 2 tbsp chia seeds contain 40% RDA of dietary fiber which helps in maintaining a healthy digestive system.
One of my favorite recipes during pregnancy was overnight chia seed pudding, which literally takes 5 minutes to put together and contains almost 3 tbsp chia seeds per serving. The great thing about it is that it can be so easily modified in taste with different toppings, that you will never get bored of this.
- ½ cup chia seeds
- 1½ cup almond/coconut milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tbsp thinly sliced almonds or almond flakes
- ½ cup mixed berries
- 2 tbsp shredded coconut
- Maple syrup, according to taste
- In a deep bowl, soak chia seeds with milk overnight.
- Check in the morning and if the mix is too thick, then add some more milk and leave for 2 more hours.
- Add vanilla extract, mix gently.
- Serve it in the individual cups/bowls.
- Add maple syrup or sugar if desired. Top it with berries, almonds, and coconut, or your favorite nuts/fruits.
- You may store it in refrigerator for 2-3 days and add toppings before eating.
Posted by Shruti Mishra
Shruti is the founder of Freshly Moms. She is a graduate from Natural Gourmet Institute, NY and a certified IIN Nutritionist. She has been working with food & nutrition since 8 years and is also a fresh mom herself.