Essential Pregnancy Nutrients – Protein
Eating a varied and balanced diet during pregnancy is very important for both you and your baby. Pregnancy nutrition is a big topic but getting started is easy - use the table below to familiarise yourself with essential nutrients and vitamins to include in your pregnancy diet and learn about the benefits for you and your baby.
Why do you and your baby need it?
Proteins are the number-one building block for your growing baby’s muscles, ligaments, hair, fingernails, bones, brain tissue, blood and other tissues.
Eat it so you can
Build your baby’s cells;
Renew your own cells.
How much is enough?
You need about 60 g/day of protein. Try eating 100-150 g of meat or fish or two eggs every day, plus three to four portions of dairy products (e.g. a glass of milk, tub of yoghurt, portion of cheese).
On your plate
Good sources of protein include:
Milk and dairy products;
Legumes (e.g. soybeans, lentils, beans);
Nuts and seeds.
Alternate your animal proteins: have fish one day, meat the next and eggs the day after that. Variety is the key to getting what you and your baby needs.
Consume vegetable proteins daily.
If your meal doesn’t include meat, have rice and lentils, or couscous and chickpeas.
If you are a vegetarian, make sure you consume enough eggs and dairy products.
Vegans may find it harder to meet their protein needs. Consult a dietitian or doctor for specific dietary advice.