The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months. Consult your doctor for advice on when to introduce complementary foods to your baby. Breastfeeding should continue for as long as possible after introduction of complementary foods.
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Many women may not give importance to their nutrition before pregnancy and may not get all that they need of the different nutrients essential for the demands of pregnancy; that is why becoming healthy before becoming pregnant is very important.Pre-conception nutrition is a vital part of preparing for your pregnancy. Factors such as your weight compared to your height and what you eat can play an important role in your health during pregnancy and the health of your developing fetus.
Pre-pregnancy weight has a direct influence on your baby’s birth weight. Studies show that underweight women are more likely to give birth to small babies, even though they might gain the same weight when they are pregnant as normal weighed women! Overweight women before pregnancy can have increased risks or complications in pregnancy such as gestational diabetes or high blood pressure. So, it is recommended that you reach your healthy weight (either gain or lose weight) before you get pregnant. For those who are underweight, consume more calories that your body needs especially from healthy sources like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, milk and meat. If you are overweight, you will need to cut off extra calories especially those that come from fats and low nutrition foods (junk food and sweets).
If you are planning to have a baby, you need to follow a healthy balanced diet. It is best to incorporate foods from all the essential food groups that include grains, vegetables, fruits, milk and dairy, meat and beans as well as small amounts of healthy fats (oils). Tips for pre-pregnancy nutrition and lifestyle factors:
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