Truth be told, development of a fetus changes everything about the female gender: your dexterity for food as there’s a competition for nutrient between the pregnant woman and the developing fetus, your hair and your waistline which is the most noticeable. A very small living creature is growing inside of you and you’re largely responsible for its life functions and development. So apart from the changes that occur during the state of pregnancy, there’s also an exchange of calories going on between the mother and the developing fetus. These changes are both in amount and type. Addition of extra calories and vitamins during the first trimester of pregnancy may not be too challenging at early stages, however, determining the types of calories consumed in the distribution of fats, carbohydrates, and protein is extremely important. During pregnancy and breastfeeding, there’s usually a much higher tendency that your body craves for food increases exponentially and would want to get as much nutrient as possible.
It is important to note that during pregnancy and breastfeeding, the consumption of protein component is extremely important for a baby’s growth and general well being. Protein is referred to as the building blocks for our body, hence, a large amount of protein must be absorbed into the body for the development of babies and also for the synthesis of breast milk in postpartum. It is always good to determine the right amount of protein to ingest into the body. According to research, 10-35% of caloric protein should be taken into the body or you should have at least an additional 25 grams daily in your diet of whatsoever sorts. Your dietician can be more accurate about the exact amount of proteins you take into the body.
Protein powder is one of the many ways to synthesize protein quickly and easily. It is produced by adding a scoop with water and milk, then shake and drink. It instantly gives you dietary supplement for your daily to-do and activities. There are two major common importance of protein powder
- To enhance workout recovery
- Serves as a supplement in a diet that is low in protein
- 1 There are three primary types of protein powders
- 2 Best Sources of Protein during Pregnancy
- 3 Protein during pregnancy
- 4 How to select protein powder while pregnant
- 5 The benefits of protein powders
There are three primary types of protein powders
There are usually synthesized by the extraction of protein from food sources. They approximately contain 60-80% of protein, while 20-40% constitutes fats and carbohydrate primarily glucose
They are quite similar to protein concentrates i.e they are synthesized by extracting proteins from food sources, however, the major difference is that they further filter the carbohydrate and fats, hence, containing more of protein in composition, 90-95% of protein
Here, protein is usually extracted from food sources. Heat and acids or enzymes are usually used in the extraction. Hydrolysate protein acts as a catalyst to break down the complex protein into amino acids which is an absorbable form of protein.
Best Sources of Protein during Pregnancy
Here is a list of various sources of proteins during pregnancy
It is usually gotten from milk and usually regarded as a complete protein. A complete protein is one that contains all essential amino acids. If you’re lactose sensitive or intolerant, whey isolates may work for your body system as it would filter out more of the lactose sugar
It is gotten from split peas. It is usually rich in fiber and contains branched chain amino acids which help to aid rapid digestion, however, it is good to note that, pea protein is not considered a complete protein because it doesn’t contain all the nine essential amino acid. Pea protein only has eight out of nine.
They are planting originated protein that bare very high in omega-3-fatty acids and rapidly digest into the bloodstream. It is also an incomplete protein as it doesn’t contain all the nine essential fatty acids.
It is usually extracted from soya beans and highly rich in vitamins. This protein is also an incomplete protein as it lacks all the essential amino acids
There are other several sources of protein powder, These includes
- Brown rice
- Mixed plant protein
Protein during pregnancy
Now that we’ve discussed the basic requirement of how much protein you need during pregnancy and different sources of protein powders, let’s talk about the major sources of these proteins. Proteins from animal sources such as meat, fish, eggs, and dairy products are referred to as a complete protein. This is because they contain all the nine amino acids that the body needs for building up. They are also known to be highly rich in major nutrients like iron sodium and potassium and vitamin B12. Protein sources from plants such as beans are not a complete protein, however, they can synthesize the essential amino acids for the body, same as other nutrients e.g vitamin D and omega-3-fatty acids.
There is no stereotyped form of protein you must take into your body, For pregnant women, this is where protein powders play a vital role, that is, acts as dietary supplementation. Addition of one or two mixed protein powder helps to increase protein level in pregnancy and can be very much handy when there’s loss of appetite for other diets. It is important to always keep in touch with your dietician before the addition of protein supplement to your diet.
How to select protein powder while pregnant
Here are some general guidelines to keep in mind as you are reading labels of your protein powders
1. The quality of your protein is of great importance. According to research by a dietician, it has been discovered that proteins of low quality accumulate into higher levels of heavy metals, A typical example are the plant-based proteins that contain trace amounts of heavy metals.
2. Always watch out for sweeteners: For example, saccharin. Medically, pregnant women are usually advised not to take saccharin likewise nursing mothers. This I due to the ability to cross the placenta and accumulate in fetal tissue. This could ultimately have an adverse effect on the child in the long run.
3. Look out for additives. Majority of the protein supplement is usually aimed at amassing mass of muscles on consumers. Many of these additives are designed for athletes and not pregnant or nursing women. Always read the label to ensure which one is for athletes or pregnant or nursing mother. This is to avoid purchasing shakes with additional stimulants like herbs. These muscle synthesizing protein usually contain additives which are adverse on pregnant or breastfeeding women. Examples of such additives include caffeine and creatinine.
4. Always stay with what works for you. For examples, if you’re lactose intolerant, you must make sure not to purchase protein powder with such substance. Likewise, if you are restricted to some specific diet you must watch the requirement of your protein supplement. Always remember that nothing beat the advice from your dietician. Constantly visit your dietician so as to consistently put you through on those requirements.
The benefits of protein powders
Protein powder is required for optimal health during pregnancy and breastfeeding. They are generally essential macronutrient required for the general well being of the body.
Since they are made up of amino acids, they act as building blocks for body cells and tissues for the pregnant mother as well as the developing fetus. It has been proven that the need for protein usually increases during the trimesters of pregnancy. This is when rapid development of the fetus is observable.
During the period of breastfeeding, your body requires more proteins that when breastfeeding is not ongoing. Protein powders are generally essential for breast milk production, hence, how well you consume protein powders ultimately affect the growth of the child. Always consider another protein supplement such as shellfish, lean meat, eggs, milk, and yogurt. Eating varieties of protein supplement help synthesize the essential amino acids that the body needs for normal development and metabolism. Take three to four protein supplements daily and you will be sure to have a complete baby with no complications.
Generally, protein powder acts as a supplement to enhance your diet and also for the development of the growing fetus. It is expected that pregnant mothers are supposed to increase the consumption of protein to help keep cells and tissues functional. Protein powders are generally considered healthy if the right proportion is used and dietician’s instruction is strictly adhered to.