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Breakfast for Pregnant Women: What Should You Eat?

Medically reviewed by Mary Rani Cadiz, MD · Obstetrics and Gynecology

Written by Jason Inocencio · Updated Jul 05, 2022

Breakfast for Pregnant Women: What Should You Eat?

Being pregnant is not easy. During this time, your body will go through significant changes for nine, long months, including skin changes, weight gain, and hormonal changes. All of these happen while you’re preparing to bring a new life into the world. With this added responsibility, it’s natural for you to want to eat properly to ensure that your baby is healthy. What then qualifies as an ideal breakfast for pregnant women? Read on to find out.

Breakfast food to avoid for pregnant women

One fact that you need to be aware of when pregnant is that your immune system is weaker than normal. That is important to note because it comes into play when considering what food you can consume for breakfast during the nine months of pregnancy. For instance, unpasteurized or undercooked food should be avoided.

Grains for breakfast

Since breakfast is supposed to be “the most important meal of the day,” having something healthy for breakfast is important, particularly for pregnant women.

As the body’s main source of energy, carbohydrates are essential and are present in grains. Make sure that at least half of your grains daily are whole grains. Most of a pregnant woman’s grains can be checked off with a bowl of fortified cereal.

Swap sugary cereals and white bread while pregnant with whole-grain cereals, brown rice, whole-wheat pasta, and whole-grain bread for breakfast instead.

breakfast for pregnant

Fruits and vegetables for breakfast

Fruits and vegetables contain lots of vitamins and minerals essential to ensuring a healthy pregnancy. Fiber present in these will aid digestion while vitamin C (a staple of many fruits and vegetables) helps in the absorption of iron. Meanwhile, dark green vegetables are rich in vitamin A, iron, and folate.

If your whole-grain cereal seems slightly boring without sugar, top it off with fruit slices instead. Apples, oranges, green beans, mangoes, pineapple slices, etc. can add variety to your breakfast cereal. Cycling through these while pregnant will add variety to your meals.

Dairy products for breakfast during pregnancy

Milk is rich in calcium, as are other dairy products like yogurt. Dairy products are also rich in vitamin D and protein. Thus, drinking milk helps fortify the bones and teeth of the baby.

Health professionals typically recommend that women increase their daily calcium intake by including calcium-rich foods in their diets, such as dairy products and green leafy vegetables.

Meat, poultry, or eggs for breakfast

Food in this group are rich in protein, B vitamins, and iron that are important for the baby’s growth. Whole-wheat toast with peanut butter is something to consider as well as eggs that have been prepared properly. Avoid Salmonella infection by eating eggs that are fully-cooked and have firm yolks as opposed to soft, runny yolks.

Some people have followed the option of skipping breakfast as a personal preference. Doctors have also advised skipping breakfast on occasion for the purposes of laboratory testing.

However, pregnant women should not skip breakfast or any meal for that matter. Eating small, frequent meals is encouraged to have sustained energy throughout the day. The importance of the health and growth of the baby and mother-to-be cannot be overstated enough during this period.

Key takeaways

The duration of a pregnancy is a critical time for both the mother and the baby in her womb. Ensuring that she is taking in the right kind of food while passing on nutrients, vitamins, and minerals to her unborn child.

A meal as critical as breakfast is something that some people looking to lose weight might choose to skip, but it is not advisable for pregnant women to do so.

Instead, they should be more aware on the kinds of food that they are consuming, especially regarding how these breakfast options will affect the growth and health of the baby.

Learn more about pregnancy here.


Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Medically reviewed by

Mary Rani Cadiz, MD

Obstetrics and Gynecology

Written by Jason Inocencio · Updated Jul 05, 2022

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