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TOPIC: ALMONDS - 1ST TRIMESTER healthiest foods

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June 5, 2010 8:05 AM

1st trimester:

Almonds are a great source of Folate, one of the most important nutrients for you in the first trimester. Folate is the natural form of folic acid, and folic acid supplementation is recommended for prevention of birth defects. Eating foods such as almonds that contain folate can help boost you and your baby's folate levels, supporting a healthy pregnancy. In your handful of almonds (20-25 nutes) you'll find 10mcg of folate. It's worth notching that if you're having more than one baby at a time - lets say twins - you probably need even more folate/folic acid.

*ignor the silly rumors that almonds are fattening. A study reported that eating up to two 1oz servings a day helps you feel full and satisfied and helps promote a healthy weight

* Research on nurition in pregnancy suggests that reducing glycemic load of foods may improve pregnancy outcome. Foods with a low glycemic load, such as vegetables, nuts, and berries, are easy for your body to use.

* Research suggests that diets with a low glycemic load during pregnancy may reduce the risk of gestational diabetes and may also reduce the risk of having a baby that is considered large for his or her gestational age. Scientists aren't suggesting you restrict food intake during pregnancy, just make healthier choices (nuts, seeds, fruits, vegetables, high-fiber whole grains rather than rpocesseds foods, crackers, and cookies)

* Almonds are a source of antioxidants, which are natural compounds that help you and your baby fight free radicals, keeping you and your baby healthy

* Studies have connected almonds consumption with heart-healthy effects. Almonds elevate the good cholesterol in the blood and lower the levels of bad cholesterol.

* Almonds improve your blood circulation, so more oxygen and nutrients can reach your baby. He or she is sure to get all the building blocks he or she needs to grow big and strong!

* Buy almonds that are uniform in color and not withered or limp. Raw almonds are delicious, but is you prefer yours "roasted"; dry-roasted almonds have not been cooked in oil. And check that the label doesn't includ sugar, preservatives, or syrups, all of which conteract the healthy aspects of this baby-healthy food. Eat whole rather than peeled or blanched almonds, the skin contains most of the baby-nourishing nutrients.

One ounce of almonds (or a smear of almond butter) together with a piece of fruit like and apple makes a great snack. It's one of my favorites! The almond butter also tastes great smeared on a few sticks of celery. Either snack has only about 250 calories for guilt-free goodness!

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