For many around the world, winter is settling in. Depending on where you live, winter can bring cooler temperatures, dryer air, less sunlight, and increased exposure to winter viruses. These things, when combined with common pregnancy side effects like itchy skin, swollen nasal passages, body temperature fluctuation, and a lowered immune system, take a toll on your body! Seek ways to counteract these effects with specific food and drinks that bring your system into balance.
Foods to boost your immune system
By now, most of us know that eating a rainbow of fruits and veggies helps ensure we get the vitamins and minerals our bodies need. To boost your immune system, eat plenty of foods rich in vitamin C, including:
- Citrus fruit
- Red bell peppers
- Snow peas
Garlic is also a known immune-boosting food, likely due to its sulfur-containing compounds. Vitamin C needs to be replaced daily, so be sure to get several helpings of vitamin C rich foods every day!
Of course, vitamin C isn't the only immunity booster. Foods rich in vitamin E, antioxidants, zinc, and probiotics all help build a strong immune system. For more ideas, check out these suggestions on WebMD.
Drink to hydrate your skin
When your body is well hydrated, your skin is well hydrated. Drinking water throughout the day will help you stay continuously hydrated. While plain water is best, juice, flavored water, tea, and soup broth helps too.
Foods to help with sunlight deficiency
Our bodies produce vitamin D when we get sunlight. Vitamin D is important for keeping bones, teeth, and muscles healthy. In pregnancy, vitamin D helps support your baby's bone development, as well as keep you healthy. Since winter causes people to get less sun exposure and therefore less vitamin D, it's important to supplement with food and vitamin D supplement. Foods rich in vitamin D include:
- Cod liver oil
- Canned tuna
- Egg yolks
- Fortified foods
For people who don't get enough daily sunlight, the recommended daily amount of vitamin D is 800-1,000 IU (25 mcg). Since it may be difficult to consume enough vitamin D rich foods every day, many people opt to take an over the counter vitamin D3 supplement. Learn more about vitamin D in this article from Healthline.
Foods to warm you
When a winter chill settles in, many people turn to warm foods. These kinds of foods help warm your body and often evoke the "warm" feelings you get from comfort foods. Soups, stews, tea, hot chocolate, etc. can help combat the cold and raise your spirits on a cold, gray day.
TagsNutrition Winter weather in pregnancy Winter