5th Month Pregnancy Diet - Which Foods To Eat And Avoid?

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You may experience different cravings each month of pregnancy, and your diet can change accordingly. So, here we discuss the 5th-month pregnancy diet. As you enter the 5th month, you will notice changes in your body, such as growing belly and increased exhaustion.

The second trimester of pregnancy may cause you to be hungrier and have strange cravings as the baby grows (1). Therefore, it is especially important that you eat the right foods to stay healthy and keep your developing baby healthy as well.

In addition, your hormones are constantly fluctuating, which adds to the cravings. Therefore, you should ascertain what you should eat and what you should avoid.

Read on as we have put together all the pieces of information about a healthy and balanced diet that you may follow during your 5th month of pregnancy to have a complication-free and comfortable journey.

5th Month Of Pregnancy Diet: What To Eat?

1. Beef Up Your Fluid Intake:

Stay hydrated at all times. Remember, you have to take care of two people now. Drink plenty of water to avoid constipation. In addition to water, consuming at least 2 glasses of milk every day will provide you with calcium and micronutrients that are vital for your baby’s healthy bone development (2).

2. Eat Protein-Rich Foods:

Proteins are the building blocks of our body. They are considered as the best 5th month pregnancy food. A diet rich in proteins is essential to ensure a baby’s physical development is on the right course. Muscles, skin and organs need protein to grow and sustain themselves. Include chicken, eggs, nuts, pulses and cereal in your diet. If you are a vegetarian, you can always go for soya chunks, steamed chickpea, cottage cheese and tofu (3).

3. Rely on Salad Power:

Salads made from raw veggies like cabbage, carrots, fresh tomatoes, rocket leaves and beet root are a great way to include minerals and fiber in your diet. Avoid using salad dressings and pickled veggies like olives and capers, because they are high in sodium content. Make sure you drink plenty of water so that constipation is at bay (4). It is suggested that pregnant women should have on an average 1 ounce of fiber per day. Excess fiber in the diet can also result in complications such as hemorrhoids.

4. Have Some Fruits:

Fruits are brimming with vitamins and minerals, and they taste delicious too. You can never get bored with fruits and you never run out of choices. There are apples, pears, bananas, kiwis, oranges, berries and currants to choose from. Why not blend some strawberries and yogurt and make a healthy smoothie?

5. Eat Your Greens:

Eating a lot of green veggies might get boring. But do it for the sake of your little one. Include spinach, fenugreek and broccoli in your diet to fulfill the body’s need for iron. You can bake or grill the veggies to add some zing to them. You could also throw in a handful of spinach in your smoothies (5).

6. The Wholesome Goodness:

Include whole grains in your diet in the form of flatbreads. Whole grains such as wheat, ragi, rice, corn and oats are rich in vitamin E, vitamin B complex, iron and magnesium and fulfill the growing baby’s need for energy and nourishment very well (6).

5th Month Of Pregnancy Diet: What Not To Do?

Now that you’ve grabbed the must haves, here are some foods that you should include in your fifth month of pregnancy diet to steer clear of.

1. Say No to Fizz:

Carbonated drinks contain caffeine, sugar and unhealthy calories. You definitely don’t want your calories to come from all the wrong sources, do you? Instead, consume fresh fruit juices and lemon water (7).

2. Fruits You Shouldn’t Eat:

Tropical fruits are packed with micronutrients and fiber, improve digestion and taste yum! But feasting on tropical fruits during pregnancy is not a great idea. Papaya and pineapple are known to induce uterine contractions in pregnant women, leading to miscarriage. Avoid the use of meat tenderizers because they contain raw papaya extracts or similar enzymes that break protein down (8).

3. Throw the Goblet Away!

If you happen to be one of those ultra modern ladies who don’t mind sipping on alcohol, you will need to quit drinking for some months now. Heavy drinking during pregnancy can cause congenital defects in the baby. However, the impacts of an occasional binge are not yet clearly known. But it is better to abstain from alcohol to avoid any potential risks (9).

4. Kick the Butt:

Smoking is proven to hinder a baby’s development and cause physical anomalies. It can deprive a baby of its oxygen supply, hamper the development of the baby’s respiratory system and cause its heart rate to go haywire. It might as well induce miscarriage or result in stillbirth (9)

5. Cut Back on Caffeine:

Both tea and coffee contain caffeine. So, you must restrict your tea/coffee intake to a maximum 2 cups a day. High caffeine intake during pregnancy is known to cause restlessness and sleeplessness in babies after they are born. You certainly don’t want your baby to wail endlessly through the initial days after it is born (7).

6. Avoid Fatty Food:

Don’t let the desire to binge on fries and pizzas get the better of you. The hormonal changes and ‘eating for the 2’ thing are enough to throw you off the scale. You should avoid eating fattening foods and canned stuff as well. An abnormal weight gain can cause unwanted complications during the gestation period.

The baby’s organs, including the brain, heart, kidneys, and liver, have already assumed their basic shape by the time a woman reaches the fifth month of her pregnancy. Therefore, both the mother and the baby require significant nourishment with the right type of 5th-month pregnancy diet. Make sure to drink enough water and eat a well-balanced diet that includes protein-rich foods, green vegetables, and fruits. However, avoid coffee, excessive calories, and alcohol that might be harmful to your pregnancy. In case of concerns, speak to a dietician who may create a diet plan specifically for the fifth month of pregnancy.

References:

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Sadiya Qamar

Sadiya is a writer and editor with a passion for writing about parenthood and children. Her focus areas are health, wellness, and beauty. For MomJunction, she writes on kids’ health and nutrition.  Sadiya believes in doing in-depth research and providing accurate information to help parents with concerns on their children’s growth and development.

Dr. Pamela Adhiambo Muga

(MMed)
Dr. Pamela Adhiambo Muga is a practicing obstetrician-gynecologist at the Nairobi Hospital and Willows Clinic for Women. She is registered with the Kenya Medical and Dental Practitioners Council and is a member of the Royal College of Obstetrician Gynecologists UK (MRCOG). A trainer in the Advanced Life Support courses run by the Kenya Red Cross (American Heart Association), Dr. Pamela... more