Shopping List for Pre-conception, Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

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When you’re an expectant or current mother, it’s sometimes difficult to keep up with the nutritional needs of you and your baby.
That’s why we’ve pulled together this handy shopping list for you to bring with you to make shopping for yourself and your little one a bit easier.
Scroll to the bottom for our full shopping list.

Fruits and Vegetables

Both fruits and vegetables have a huge variety of vitamins, minerals, fibre and antioxidants that are fantastically helpful during pregnancy.
Eat the rainbow, as they say!
Ensure you are eating a variety of colourful fruits and veggies in your diet and make sure to include lots of green leafy vegetables. These can help raise important vitamin K levels and provide you with plenty of iron and B vitamins, including folate. Folate contributes to the normal growth of the foetus.

You won’t need to buy everything on this list at once. Try rotating weekly your selection from this list to get a wide variety of nutrients into your diet.

Also please don’t hesitate to add as many other fruits and veggies as you like, and don’t feel restricted to this list alone.

veggies for shopping list

Fruit and Vegetable Shopping list

Greens (most are high in vitamin K, folate, iron, magnesium, calcium, b vitamins)

  • kale
  • spinach
  • mustard/beet/collard/turnip greens
  • parsley
  • broccoli
  • Brussels sprouts
  • romaine lettuce
  • watercress
  • asparagus
  • cucumber
  • celery
  • rocket

Reds/Oranges (most are high in beta-carotene, b vitamins)

  • red bell peppers
  • tomatoes
  • carrots
  • sweet potatoes
  • pumpkin
  • mango
  • apricots
  • pink grapefruit
  • oranges/satsuma/tangerine/clementine
  • watermelons
  • papaya
  • strawberries
  • raspberries
  • red apples

Blues/purples 

  • beetroot
  • blueberries
  • aubergine

Whites and Yellow

  • cauliflower
  • parsnip
  • turnip/swede
  • fennel
  • onions/leek/shallots
  • garlic
  • ginger
  • turmeric root
  • button mushrooms
  • pineapple
  • peaches/nectarines
  • lemons/limes
  • bananas
protein for shopping list

Protein

Undoubtedly, protein is on the list. Ensure that you consume plenty of good quality protein every day for a healthy pregnancy. Protein is made up of amino acids, quite literally called the building blocks of life, so make sure to include some with every meal.

Protein-Rich Shopping list

Plant-Based Protein:

Animal Protein:

  • grass-fed meat * see links at bottom of the page
  • free-range poultry
  • free-range organic eggs
  • organic natural or Greek yoghurt
  • bone broth

Fats

Without a doubt, good quality fats are absolutely vital. They are essential to the baby’s organ and brain development, tissue growth, for good milk production and overall health. During pregnancy and whilst nursing, it is definitely not a good time to skimp on these essential healthy fats.

In particular, one type of fat to focus on are your Omega-3s.
These are an incredibly vital nutrient to consume preconception and all the way through the pregnancy. They play a pivotal role in foetal growth and development. Additionally, omega 3’s should be continued post-pregnancy, especially if you’re breastfeeding.

Healthy Fats Shopping List

For vegans/veggies:

  • coconut (whole or oil, or MCT oil)
  • olive (whole or oil)
  • avocado (whole or oil)
  • nuts (whole or as oils) almonds, brazil nuts, cashews, macadamia, pecan, walnuts
  • seeds – chia, sesame, sunflower, pumpkin, linseed/flax, hemp

For meat-eaters:

  • organic grass-fed meats
  • organic ghee (clarified butter) (also veggie friendly)
  • free-range organic eggs (also veggie friendly)
  • organic butter (also veggie friendly)
  • wild salmon and oily fish*
    *Try not to over-consume oily fish as they can contain a lot of heavy metals

Consuming good quality fats with foods that contain fat-soluble vitamins such as green leafy vegetables make these vitamins much more bioavailable. Plus, it increases their absorption rate when consumed together.

Water

During pregnancy, a woman’s blood volume actually increases as a result of her body having to supply fluid to replenish the amniotic fluid the baby is in.
For this reason, it makes it essential for the mother to keep properly hydrated and ensure that she drinks enough water during the day.
Not only will drinking water help to promote energy levels and mood, but also it will help to keep the skin hydrated and prevent those unwanted stretch marks.

Let’s talk caffeine 

In general, it is strongly recommended that you avoid caffeine completely when pregnant or at the least, to severely cut back.
Admittedly, avoiding caffeine when you’re pregnant can be one of the hardest things to give up, but it’s for good reason.
Caffeine can cross the placenta and affect your baby’s heart rate. Worryingly, some studies suggest that drinking too much caffeine during pregnancy might even be associated with an increased risk of miscarriage.
If you can’t give it up entirely, just try to stick to 1 cup a day, and preferably from green tea. Green tea contains L-theanine which helps to counteract the effects of caffeine.

Alternatives

There’s a lot of debate on herbal teas, and it’s always best to do your own research. Talk with a herbalist or your health care professional before consuming herbal teas, as some can work medicinally in the body, and not in favour of carrying a baby (some herbs encourage menstruation).

Tea’s that are considered safe to drink include:

  • rooibos tea (high in antioxidants and caffeine-free)
  • mint and ginger (may help alleviate morning sickness
  • chamomile (to aid relaxation and prevent insomnia)
  • nettle (high in iron and various other minerals) 
  • raspberry leaf tea (during the last half of pregnancy, this tea is often recommended to help tone the uterine muscle. This may help make contractions more efficient.)

    You can also opt for green juices and smoothies to whack up your greens intake and keep yourself hydrated. 

Below I have put together everything in one list so that you can print it and take it shopping next time you’re out – scoop out those recipe books and happy munching!

Preconception, Pregnancy and Breastfeeding Shopping Full Shopping List

Fruits and Vegetables

Greens 

__ kale
__ spinach
__ mustard/beet/collard/turnip greens
__ parsley
__ broccoli
__ brussels sprouts
__ romaine lettuce
__ watercress
__ asparagus
__ cucumber
__ celery
__ rocket

Reds/Oranges

__ red bell peppers
__ tomatoes
__ carrots
__ sweet potatoes
__ pumpkin
__ mango
__ apricots
__ pink grapefruit
__ oranges/satsuma/tangerine/clementine
__ watermelons
__ papaya
__ strawberries
__ raspberries
__ red apples

Blues/purples

__ beetroot
__ blueberries
__ aubergine

Whites and Yellows

__ cauliflower
__ parsnip
__ turnip/swede
__ fennel
__ onions/leek/shallots
__ garlic
__ ginger
__ turmeric root
__ button mushrooms
__ pineapple
__ peaches/nectarines
__ lemons/limes
__ bananas

Plant-Based Protein:

__ nuts – almonds, brazil nuts, cashews, macadamia, pecan, walnuts
__ seeds – chia, sesame, sunflower, pumpkin, linseed/flax, hemp
__ legumes – chickpeas, butter beans, cannellini beans, pinto beans, black beans, turtle beans, red kidney beans, lentils, split peas
__ green leafy vegetables
__ broccoli
__ avocado
__ quinoa
__ sprouts 

Animal Protein:

__ grass-fed meat
__ free-range poultry
__ free-range organic eggs
__ organic natural or Greek yoghurt
__ bone broth

Fats

__ coconut (whole or oil, or MCT oil)
__ olive (whole or oil)
__ avocado (whole or oil)
__ nuts (whole or as oils) almonds, brazil nuts, cashews, macadamia, pecan, walnuts
__ seeds – chia, sesame, sunflower, pumpkin, linseed/flax, hemp
__ organic grass-fed meats
__ organic ghee (clarified butter) (also veggie friendly)
__ free-range organic eggs (also veggie friendly)
__ organic butter (also veggie friendly)
__ wild salmon and oily fish

Tea

__ rooibos tea (high in antioxidants and caffeine-free)
__ mint
__ ginger 
__ chamomile
__ nettle 
__ raspberry leaf tea

Items to avoid:

• Trans fatty acids (e.g hydrogenated oils)
• Processed/refined/junk food
• White refined Sugar
• White flour
• Soft drinks
• Mould-ripened soft cheese (cheeses with a white rind) e.g brie, camembert, chevre and also blue cheese
• Raw or undercooked meat
• Raw eggs
• Caffeine
• Alcohol
• Cigarettes

Check out the other blog posts in our pregnancy series here:

Emily Nöth

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*Please note that while we are knowledgeable about our products and nutrition, this blog should never be a substitute for medical advice and attention

Please remember that you should always obtain the all-clear from your doctor before starting any new supplement plan or diet, especially when you’re pregnant or trying to conceive.

* See these links for more information on grass-fed meat http://wellnessmama.com/2887/grass-fed-meat-vs-grain-fed-meat/ to see the distinction between grass-fed meat that has been raised in a natural environment and meat from cows raised on feed lots where they are often fed genetically modified grains http://paleoleap.com/importance-of-grass-fed-meat/