A woman’s body changes during pregnancy. As does its needs. When you are pregnant, you don’t just need to take care of your health. You also have to keep in mind the needs of your unborn child.
The food you eat impacts every aspect of your health. And during pregnancy, this becomes more evident. You actually ‘eat for two’ when you are pregnant. The need for vitamins, minerals, and all other nutrients go up manifold during pregnancy. But many women overlook the amount of magnesium they consume every day. That is a mistake!
Why Do Pregnant Women Need Magnesium?
The human body needs magnesium to function properly. All the muscles and organs in the body require magnesium to stay healthy. Taking Magnesium during pregnancy also helps regulate energy and mineral level in the body. A pregnant woman’s need for magnesium is pretty obvious. Not just does she need it to manage her body, but also her baby’s fledgling life. Here’s why you need magnesium in your pregnancy diet:
- Magnesium helps to provide protection from preeclampsia – a serious health condition.
- Magnesium is not just important for bone health but also helps to build and repair tissues during pregnancy.
- Leg cramps are another pregnancy symptom that can be relieved with magnesium.
- Magnesium deficiency is also linked to poor fetal growth and infant mortality.
- According to research, a balanced amount of magnesium helps prevent premature contractions.
- Magnesium deficiency during pregnancy can lead to nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, fatigue, insomnia, irregular heartbeat, and weakness.
[ Read: Nausea During Pregnancy ]
Magnesium During Pregnancy – How Much is Needed?
A healthy woman requires around 310 to 320 milligrams of magnesium every day. But a pregnant woman needs around 350 to 360 milligrams of magnesium each day to tend to the growing need of her body. A healthy, balanced diet is enough to provide the required amount of magnesium. But many women have no clue about the magnesium content in their food. That is why many of them turn towards magnesium supplements during pregnancy. But it is always better to get one’s nutrients from food.
Magnesium Rich Foods For Pregnant Women:
Most pregnant women lack the knowledge to ensure the proper amount of magnesium in their diet. No, you don’t need to be a nutritionist to know your food! Just go through the list below to ensure a magnesium rich diet:
|Food Milligrams||(mg) per
|Almonds, dry roasted, One ounce||80|
|Spinach, boiled, ½ cup||78|
|Cashews, dry roasted, 1 ounce||74|
|Peanuts, oil roasted, ¼ cup||63|
|Cereal, shredded wheat, two large biscuits||61|
|Soymilk, plain or vanilla, 1 cup||61|
|Black beans, cooked, ½ cup||60|
|Edamame, shelled, cooked, ½ cup||50|
|Peanut butter, smooth, two tablespoons||49|
|Bread, whole wheat, two slices||46|
|Avocado, cubed, 1 cup||44|
|Potato, baked with skin, 3.5 ounces||43|
|Rice, brown, cooked, ½ cup||42|
|Yogurt, plain, low fat, 8 ounces||42|
|Breakfast cereals, fortified with 10% of the DV for magnesium||40|
|Oatmeal, instant, one packet||36|
|Kidney beans, canned, ½ cup||35|
|Banana, one medium||32|
|Salmon, Atlantic, farmed, cooked, 3 ounces||26|
|Milk, 1 cup||24-27|
|Halibut, cooked, 3 ounces||24|
|Raisins, ½ cup||23|
|Chicken breast, roasted, 3 ounces||22|
|Beef, ground, 90% lean, pan-broiled, 3 ounces||20|
|Broccoli, chopped and cooked, ½ cup||12|
|Rice, white, cooked, ½ cup||10|
|Apple, one medium||9|
Just weave your menu plan around these food items to make sure you are getting enough magnesium – for you and your baby!
Do You Need Magnesium Supplement?
It is very tempting to just pop in a few supplements instead of watching what we eat. But is magnesium supplement a good idea?
Anything in excess can harm your body. If you think you are not getting enough of this essential mineral through your diet, you can opt for supplementation. In fact, many doctors prescribe magnesium supplements as part of the prenatal vitamin package. But never self-medicate. Always talk to your doctor before you go in for magnesium supplements.
Magnesium Supplement Side Effects:
The chance of consuming too much magnesium during pregnancy through food is slim. But when you use supplements, you run the risk of magnesium overdose. Here are some side effects that come with magnesium supplements:
1. Diarrhea and Dehydration:
Magnesium supplements can cause intestinal irritation in some pregnant women. This can lead to diarrhea, abdominal cramping, and appetite loss. Untreated diarrhea can even lead to dehydration – a serious concern during pregnancy. If you are on magnesium supplements and experiencing diarrhea for 2-3 days, talk to your doctor.
[ Read: Dehydration During Pregnancy ]
2. Stomach Upset:
The last thing you need during pregnancy is nausea and vomiting – morning sickness provides enough of that! But magnesium intake during pregnancy can lead to digestive issues that mimic morning sickness. These symptoms subside within hours of treatment but if they persist, seek medical advice.
3. Medication Interactions:
Magnesium supplements are known to interact with certain medications. If you are on antibiotics, blood pressure medication, calcium channel blockers, diabetes medication, etc. talk to your doctor before you start supplementing.
[ Read: Vitamin B Rich Foods ]
Magnesium overdose is unlikely but is a possibility. If you experience any of the following symptoms after consuming magnesium supplements, head to the ER. Magnesium overdose can be fatal if not treated on time.
Symptoms to look out for:
- Persistent vomiting
- Irregular heart rate
- Difficulty breathing
- Muscle weakness
- Low blood pressure
- Confusion and coma
During pregnancy, your body needs that little extra care and nourishment. But you don’t always need to grab OTC medication and supplements to meet these needs! Just eat healthily and keep in touch with your doctor. Your body knows what to do, trust it! And trust your doctor too.
Have a healthy, happy, and non-eventful pregnancy!
And don’t forget to drop us a line in the comments section below.
Reference : 1
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