Protein During Pregnancy
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Kara Korhonen, dietary expert, talks about protein during pregnancy. How much you should eat of it, where you should get it, and why it's important for you and your baby and gives out two great recipes.


Proteins helps build your baby's muscles and tissues, therefore an inadequate protein intake often results in babies with lower birth weight. The recommended daily allowance for protein is 25 grams higher than for a non-pregnant woman, which means your daily target is 70 to 75 grams. Most Americans pregnant or not, consume twice as much as protein as necessary. So, talk to your obstetrician, midwife or registered dietitian to see if you really need to consume extra protein. Do you know what 75 grams of protein looks like? Follow me to the kitchen and I will show you. While we are there we will also make some salads loaded with iron and zinc, come on. Here is part of a daily meal plan that illustrates how easy it is to meet your protein goals. Let's say at the breakfast you enjoy a couple of eggs, some toast and a glass of milk. As a part of your morning snack, you enjoy almonds, and for lunch you have a grilled cheese sandwich and some bean and vegetable soup and as part of dinner you have a grilled chicken breast, and another glass of milk. With just these foods you are at 78 grams of protein. My Taco Salad recipe is packed with nutrition and flavor. This recipe has all of the second trimester nutrients discussed. Per serving Taco Salad provide some excellent source of Iron, Zinc and Protein. So flex your muscles and get to work in the kitchen. For Taco Salad you will need one pound of ground beef or veggie crumbles, one package taco seasoning mix, one 15 ounce can of kidney beans, two or three tomatoes chopped, a half cup of grated sharp Cheddar cheese and third up lite thousand island dressing, one head of romaine lettuce chopped, and one-tenth of bag of tortilla chips. Prepare the ground beef as direct by the taco seasoning mix. Let it cool slightly then place in a medium sized bowl. After rinsing the kidney beans under cold running water add the kidney bean, chopped tomatoes and mix. Add the cheese and combine. Stop right there. I want you to read the ingredients list on that bottle of salad dressing. If you see partially hydrogenated soybean oil or any other partially hydrogenated food, put down the product and send your hubby or significant other to the grocery store for a healthier version. You and your baby don't need to be consuming any hydrogenated products. Stir in the dressing until thoroughly combined. Place the desired amount of chopped romaine lettuce in each salad bowl, top with the ground beef mixture. If desired arrange tortilla chips around each bowl. Are you looking for a quick and healthy entrée? My Chicken Salad is just the answer. I love this recipe because it's significantly healthier than traditional chicken salad, but doesn't compromise flavor. For all of you vegetarians out there, you don't need to skip to the next recipe. You can make this chicken salad using seitan. Sietan is Wheat Gluten Meat for those of you who are familiar with this meat alternative product. It is devilishly good. The ingredients for this recepie include two and a half cups cubed cooked chicken breast, a one-third cup light mayonnaise, two thinly sliced green onions, half a cup shredded carrots, a quarter cup peas and eight slices of whole wheat bread. In a medium sized bowl, place the cube chicken or seitan, add the mayonnaise and mix thoroughly. It is mind boggling, how many varieties of mayonnaise are on the market today. I prefer a light mayonnaise that uses a vegetable oil blend of canola, flaxseed, soy and olives. It has only 5 grams of fat per table spoon compared with the traditional mayonnaise that contains 12 grams or more of fat per table spoon. After you have mixed the chicken and mayonnaise, add the green onions, peas and carrot. Mix until thoroughly combined. You need to decide which source of bread you want to use. You can use whole wheat bread slices, tortillas or patty. To lighten things up I have even scooped this salad on whole grain crackers for tasty snack. Yum! Healthy and delicious.