18 and Pregnant, Where Do I Start?

Kimberly A. Tessmer's picture

QUESTION

Dear Nutritionist,
Ok well I just found out this morning that I am pregnant( I took 2 tests)( I am 18). I'm going to a doctor this Friday to get started on my journey but honestly I'm in a rut. I live with my boyfriend and 2 of our friends in a 2 bedroom and of course we don't eat right all the time. Between college and working nights its really hard to. I don't even know like what to avoid or what I should eat more of.

I really just don't know...Help ...Please..

ANSWER

Your first step is proper prenatal care so a doctor's visit is a great first step! Secondly you need to look at your lifestyle. It is time to begin taking good care of yourself for both the baby and you. Unhealthy habits such as too much caffeine, smoking, drinking alcohol, etc... need to change. You need to eat healthy so that you are able to provide your baby all of the nutrients he/she needs. Your doctor will most likely prescribe a prenatal vitamin, which is extremely important. BUT it will not provide everything that you need so your food intake is so important.

A GREAT place to start is www.mypyramid.gov. This will get you started with a healthy diet. Specifically this link: http://www.mypyramid.gov/mypyramidmoms/index.html, will take you to healthy eating for pregnancy. It doesn't need to be difficult. You just need to think about cutting back on the not-so-healthy such as fast food, sweets, regular soft drinks, etc... and replacing it with good foods. Think of the food groups and of getting foods from all of the groups each day: low fat or fat free dairy, lean meats, fruits, vegetables and whole grains. The mypyramid web site will give you a great start.

Good luck to you!
-- Kimberly, RD LD