The diet of pregnancy: daily and weekly menu

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Diet of pregnancy

What should a pregnant woman eat? In pregnancy there is ua particular diet to follow? We asked the doctor , who showed us a weekly and daily menu.

Premise: the quantities have not been indicated in the menu, because they depend a lot on the physical conformation of the woman. In fact, the needs of a 150 cm tall woman, for example, are very different from those of a 180 cm tall woman, just as a woman who begins pregnancy overweight is in a different condition than those below her. healthy weight, and those who carry out regular physical activity need more calories than those who lead a completely sedentary life, perhaps because the doctor has advised them to rest. This is why it is always important to refer to your gynecologist, who knows the woman's health conditions and will be able to give you the most useful information.

Diet of pregnancy: the importance of fruits and vegetables

All meals must begin with a small piece of raw fruit or vegetables to activate the immune system.

Download the pdf of the diet

Read also: Diet in pregnancy

In this article


  • Everyday,
  • Menu of the week, 
  • Day of "Skinny".


- Breakfast

Breakfast is the main meal of the day and for this reason it must be a rich meal and include all the nutrients: vegetable element (source of vitamins and minerals), carbohydrates, proteins and fats. All the proposals indicated take into consideration the possible presence of morning sickness and it is advisable to alternate them during the week. Breakfast drinks should not be sweetened or sweetened.

  1.  Whole or semi-skimmed white yogurt or milk or yogurt or vegetable milk (rice, oats, soy, millet, etc.) depending on the tolerance of each, with the addition of fresh chopped fruit, cereals with no added sugar (wholemeal muesli, flakes or sticks of whole wheat) and a handful of unroasted and unsalted oil seeds (walnuts, hazelnuts, almonds, etc.) rich in Omega 3.
  2. Fruit (but also juice for those who do not have nausea and acidity, or fruit-only smoothies or centrifuged) + wholemeal toast (possibly with artisan bread without hydrogenated fats, cooked vegetable fats, such as palm oil, or lard), with ham cooked ham and cheese such as emmenthal, fontina or caciocavallo which are particularly rich in calcium; on the other hand, the thin slices, unhealthy because they are obtained through the hot melting of one or more cheeses with the help of potentially harmful emulsifying additives, such as polyphosphates, as well as preservatives and stabilizers, should be avoided.
  3. Fruit + infusion (e.g. with red fruits or fennel) or decaffeinated tea, normal or green (to vary) + wholemeal bread with ricotta and sugar-free jam (sweetened with grape or apple juice).
  4. Fruit + infusion with red fruits, fennel, etc., or decaffeinated tea, normal or green (to vary) + low sodium rice, spelled or corn cakes or whole wheat and rye slices (Wasa type), or bread wholemeal + egg (cooked to taste without fat).


- Snacks (mid-morning and mid-afternoon)

Fresh fruit possibly accompanied by a biscuit or a wholemeal rusk or a piece of dry bread (wholemeal) with 2 walnuts or other oil seeds. If there is no nausea, fruit alone is fine too.

Read also: 10 tips on diet during pregnancy

Menu of the week

NB: Single dishes that include both carbohydrates and proteins must be visually balanced. In salmon pasta, for example, the portion of salmon should be clearly visible and will have approximately the same volume as the pasta.

1. Monday


Single dish: Wholemeal pasta with zucchini carbonara (egg and zucchini)
Boundary: Mixed salad dressed with oil and lemon or vinegar


According to: Steamed plaice fillets seasoned with oil, lemon and parsley
Contour: green beans and potatoes

2. Tuesday


Single dish: Rice or spelled salad or wholemeal barley (brown rice + tuna in drained or natural olive oil + cheese + vegetables to taste: boiled carrots and green beans, tomatoes, etc ...)
Contour: grilled aubergines


According to: Grilled turkey breast with rosemary, sprinkled with fresh lemon juice; 3-4 biscuits (rice or corn or other cereal) or 1 small wholemeal sandwich
Contour: boiled spinach

3. Wednesday


Single dish: Wholemeal pasta with fresh salmon (unsmoked)
Contour: Seasonal vegetable pinzimonio (carrots, fennel, endive, cucumber, celery, pepper ...)


Single dish: Octopus or seafood salad with potatoes
Contour: Mixed salad

4. Thursday


Single dish: Rice and chickpeas with 2 teaspoons of Parmesan
Contour: Mixed salad


According to: Baked chicken
Contour: peas and carrots


5. Friday


First course: Wholemeal pasta with tomato and basil
According to: Breaded anchovy pie cooked in the oven with cherry tomatoes and olives (breading also without egg).
Contour: Carrot, radicchio and fennel salad


According to: Mixed salad with eggs, mozzarella (or other cheese) 3 -4 walnuts, 4-5 olives

3-4 crackers or wasa slices or small wholemeal sandwich

6. Saturday


Single dish: Brown rice and lentils
Contour: Catalonia or boiled beets


First course: Eggplant parmigiana (grilled eggplant, tomato and mozzarella)
Wholemeal sandwich
Contour: Salads


7. Sunday


First course: Wholemeal pasta with pesto
According to: Grilled swordfish with rocket, oil and lemon
Contour: Boiled green beans


First course: Lukewarm vegetable puree
According to: Meat rolls and cooked ham
Contour: Pinzimonio

Condiments: extra virgin olive oil (rich in monounsaturated fats) used raw or towards the end of cooking. Quantity: without skimping, but the oil layer on the bottom of the salad bowl must not remain. Avoid the "scarpetta" of the leftover pinzimonio oil.


Sweets? Yes, once in a while.

Granted a dessert or ice cream once or twice a week. It is preferable that the dessert or ice cream is artisanal (even better if homemade). It should be avoided to consume it alone (the simple sugars contained make the blood sugar rise too quickly), but it is preferable to add it to the meal by significantly reducing the other carbohydrates: when you eat dessert, for example, you can make a meal with grilled turkey, abundant grilled or raw vegetables dressed with extra virgin olive oil.

Read also: Diet during pregnancy

"Skinny" day

No yeast, milk / dairy / cheese, wheat, wine or vinegar: to be repeated every 2 weeks.


Fruit / Juice Green tea / coffee / barley / vegetable milk (oats, rice, soy ..) without sugar Brown rice or whole corn flakes Sliced ​​(cooked ham) or hard-boiled egg or a handful of dried fruit (walnuts, hazelnuts, almonds, etc. ).


Single dish: Venere rice or other brown rice with cherry tomatoes, diced swordfish and green olives. "Venere rice is a dark purple brown rice which, similarly to other wholegrain rice, is rich in potassium, contains little sodium, vitamins B1, B2 and trace elements such as zinc and selenium" comments Dr. "It is very aromatic and lends itself to various preparations also due to its purple color, moreover compared to common brown rice it is less rubbery and it blends better with the sauce".
Contour: Raw vegetables seasoned with oil and lemon (no vinegar).


According to: Sea bass in salt with potatoes
Contour: Grilled vegetables

3-4 biscuits or a packet of rice, corn or other cereal extrusions (you can find them in supermarkets and health food stores).

Read also: The post-partum diet: the weekly menu

Diet in pregnancy for not gaining weight

Un weight gain in pregnancy it is physiological and should not scare. The increase is gradual and in proportion to the progress of the pregnancy. There is no way to know how many pounds you will gain in pregnancy, but there may be an awareness of choosing to eat properly choosing ahealthy and balanced diet that is good for both mother and baby. 

L'supply, in fact, it plays a leading role, together with a proper lifestyle, to favor the welfare psychophysical of the future mother and child.

At the beginning of pregnancy there may be severe pangs and deso to eat more often or more, or on the contrary, due to the nausea, there may be less hunger or the desire to eat.

After the initial phase, pregnancy-related hormones may promote appetite and often a pregnant woman begins to eat more even without realizing it. And this could lead to excessive and poor eating with disproportionate weight gain.

It is necessary to strive to eat at the best for the well-being of mother and child and to know what to eat to avoid gaining weight during pregnancy, putting on more pounds than necessary. 

Eating in a balanced way therefore means making food conscious choices of what you bring to the table. A controlled diet is therefore necessary.

  • During pregnancy, staying hydrated with a correct water supply it is more important than ever, considering that the need for fluids increases dramatically. Water is certainly the best drink, it has no calories and is natural. What is to be avoided are sugary drinks. Yes to the most common herbal teas such as chamomile, lemon balm, valerian, linden, hawthorn, nettle, mint, passion flower.
  • It would be preferable not to exceed 1800 kcal per day, distributed throughout the day in 5 meals. Breakfast, snack, lunch, snack and dinner, with a predominance of fibers, which help regulate intestinal function and with low calories, vegetables, rich in mineral salts and vitamins and proteins, especially fish, easily digestible and rich in nutrients. However, they remain the main source of energy i carbohydrates: pasta, bread and cereals.
  • Even fats do not have to be completely banned, they should represent 25-30% of the energy introduced daily.
  • As for snacks and snacks, you can choose many foods rich in nutrients and low in calories.

The always valid advice is to chew slowly to satiate and digest better. 

Diet in first trimester pregnancy

During the first trimester of pregnancy A very low weight gain, around one kilo, is expected due to the growth of the uterus and the increase in blood volume. For this reason it is not necessary to increase energy needs, but to choose a healthy diet. Here are some tips on what to eat in the first trimester of pregnancy.

  • Minimize all junk foods and drinks, foods with added additives (salt or sugar), nerve substances (limit tea and coffee) or potentially allergenic foods (e.g. peanuts or shellfish),
  • Pay attention to large amounts of carbohydrates and the glycemic index of foods. 
  • Prefer lean, well-cooked meats and fish as it is more digestible,
  • Eat eggs a couple of times a week, always well cooked.
  • Prefer legumes for the intake of vegetable proteins,
  • Take a good amount of dairy products, then low-fat cheeses such as ricotta, mozzarella and crescenza
  • Well washed fruits and vegetables.

The contribution of minerals and vitamins is very important. Among the most important elements it is necessary to introduce vitamins B, vitamin D, iodine, iron and zinc. Take supplements of folic acid at this stage it is very important for the development of the fetus. It should be taken one month before conception and continue until the end of the third month. 

Diet in second trimester pregnancy

Starting from second quarterinstead, with the increase of the mother's tissues and fetal growth, it starts to have
the necessity of increase energy intake of about 340 Kcal. Of course, it can also vary according to the physical activity carried out by the mother. If physical activity is very limited, energy intake can be even lower. The important thing is that there is always everything necessary to ensure well-being for both.

As regards the nutrients necessary, here are some tips on diet in the second trimester of pregnancy

  • carbohydrates they must cover at least 55% of daily needs, thus remaining the main source of energy. Whole grains, rice, potatoes, oatmeal are excellent sources.
  • Da cut back on refined baked goods instead, obtained with 00 flours, sugars and fats.
  • The contribution of protein it must be slightly increased, as these are necessary for fetal development. 
  • It is advisable limit the consumption of butter and of fats contained in cured meats, cheeses, cream and sauces.
  • Prefer theextra virgin olive oil and fats of dried fruit.
  • Take essential fatty acids, Omega 3, because they are very important for the development of the fetal nervous and blood system, so fish 2/3 times a week.
  • Yes to fruit and vegetable juices, water and herbal teas, which guarantee the body's fluid needs and are precious sources of vitamins and mineral salts. 
  • Fruits and vegetables well washed must always be present.

Diet in third trimester pregnancy

In third trimester of pregnancy, with the further increase in volume of the placenta and the growth of the fetus, the calorie requirement it reaches an increase of approximately 450 Kca.

The last trimester is a bit more tiring, as the weight of the belly begins to be felt and the pressure of the uterus on the stomach could lead to digestive problems, abdominal pain or heartburn. During this time it is very important to have short, light meals throughout the day and to drink plenty of water between meals. 

Il dietary regimen recommended during the third trimester of pregnancy is therefore the following: 

  • increase your protein intake, both animal and vegetable, necessary for the fetus to increase its muscle mass and gain weight. Consume mainly white meats and limit fatty meats.
  • Fish can be taken safely. Rich in omega 3 and good fats, is a precious food for the development of the child: salmon, mackerel, herring are really precious
  • Yes also to legumes, rich in proteins, iron and minerals valuable for health.
  • Even the eggs they can be eaten, always well cooked and no more than two per week.
  • Fruits and vegetables they should always be there.
  • Decrease the consumption of salt
  • Don't miss the Vitamin K, essential for blood clotting. It is found in broccoli, kale, spinach, melons, bread and wholemeal pasta.

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