Peas during pregnancy can be an excellent addition to your diet, as green peas boast of an exceptionally extensive nutritional profile. In addition to this, green peas are widely available, and easily accessible to most people, making them pretty much the ideal food to consume during pregnancy.
Green peas can be acquired fresh, but are generally available as frozen peas, most commonly at your local supermarket or grocers. Frozen peas during pregnancy are also perfectly safe for consumption and can be used in a number of different delicious as well as nutritional recipes.
Is It Safe To Eat Peas During Pregnancy?
For the most part, it is safe to say that consuming green peas during early pregnancy as well as late pregnancy is perfectly safe for both you and your child. The extensive nutritional profile of green peas can even make it downright essential for the diet of most people, as the plethora of health benefits it offers are too good to give up.
That being said, like most other things, they are only beneficial if taken in the right amounts. Too much or too little, and not only is it possible that you may not get the desired health benefits; it is equally likely that it can have an adverse effect on your body. Hence, it is highly advised that you consult your doctor or dietician to determine the adequate amounts of green peas for healthy consumption.
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Nutritional Profile Of Peas During Pregnancy
As mentioned above, green peas boast quite an extensive nutritional profile, and as such offer no small number of health benefits. They are rich sources of vitamins, proteins, as well as fiber.
In addition to this, they are also relatively low in terms of caloric content (the majority of which come from carbohydrates), making them ideal for meals as well as snacks. According to a source the nutritional profile is given below (for roughly half-cup (60 grams) of green peas):
· Caloric Content: 63 kcal
· Carbohydrates: 11 grams
· Proteins: 4 grams
· Fiber: 3.6 grams
· Vitamin A: 84 µg
· Beta carotene: 1000 µg
· Vitamin K: 19 µg
· Vitamin C: 8 mg
· Calcium: 19.2 mg
· Potassium: 88 mg
· Phosphorous: 61 mg
· Manganese: .22 mg
· Magnesium: 17.6 mg
· Foliate: 72.2 µg
In addition to this, they are also a rich source of Vitamin B9, which is said to be essential for pregnant women as it greatly helps prevent neural defects that tend to occur as a result of a vitamin deficiency.
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12 Benefits Of Eating Peas During Pregnancy
Given the extensive and diverse nutritional profile of green peas mentioned above, it should come as no surprise that they offer a plethora of benefits to your health, as well as the health of your fetus. Due to this fact, they are recommended by almost everyone to be added to your pregnancy diet. A few of these health benefits are given below:
1. They help boost your energy
During the course of your pregnancy, it is only natural to find yourself tired, fatigued, and having morning sickness. This is because the increased demand for nutrition and energy by the fetus can take quite a toll on your body.
As such, it is important that you do all you can to maintain your health for your own sake, as well as your baby’s well-being. Green peas are a very rich source of iron, which will greatly help you boost your overall energy as well as help fight all kinds of infections.
2. They help maintain your heart’s health
It is always of critical importance to keep your heart healthy and pumping. This is all the more relevant if you are pregnant, as your body is essentially working overtime to sustain both you and your child.
Green peas are a rich source of fiber, which can go a long way in maintaining your heart’s overall health and proper functioning. According to a source, legumes like peas improve cardiovascular health and reduce the risk of coronary heart disease, and high blood pressure.
3. Peas assist in preventing unhealthy weight gain
It is not at all uncommon for women who are pregnant to undergo unhealthy weight gain during their pregnancy. This can rarely evolve to be a much more critical issue down the line. However, it is still worth taking steps to prevent to maintain your overall health and fitness.
Green peas being a rich source of fiber can help greatly with the digestion process, cut down on hunger, as well as lose weight easily and healthily. According to this source, the low fat, high protein, and fiber content of peas makes them a weight loss-friendly food.
4. Peas can help strengthen bones
Pregnancy is sure to take a bit of a toll on women, particularly in the later trimesters, as a result of the fetus’ increased demand for nutrition. One of the most common ways this can be observed is with the loss of strength and bone density women may experience.
As stated earlier, green peas are a rich source of Vitamin K, which can help greatly in strengthening your bones. This is because Vitamin K greatly assists with your bones’ calcium retention, making it ideal for maintaining good bone health.
Related Reading: Top 10 Calcium Rich Foods For Pregnancy
5. Helps improve neural functions
This is not exactly a benefit specific to pregnancy, but rather something sure to help almost anyone. Consuming green peas can go a long way in enhancing neural activity, thus preventing certain brain-related ailments such as memory shortfall, and even Alzheimer’s in the case of older people1.
6. They help with the synthesis of DNA for the fetus
As mentioned earlier, green peas are a very rich source of folate, which can greatly help promote the synthesis of DNA. As such, consuming green peas during pregnancy can be quite greatly beneficial for your baby, and can go a long way in preventing many birth defects2.
7. Peas may help combat inflammation
Inflammation is an all-too-common occurrence in pregnant women and left unchecked it can cause a great deal of pain and discomfort. Green peas possess anti-inflammatory properties, and hence they can go a long way in preventing inflammation3.
Related Reading: 15 Home Remedies For Swollen Feet During Pregnancy
8. They help reduce the likelihood of stomach cancer
Though it is not all that common, the dangers of cancer are undeniable, particularly in pregnant women. As such, any measure to prevent it, or at the very least reduce its likelihood must be taken.
According to research, green peas have an anti-carcinogenesis property. Green peas contain coumestrol, a phytonutrient that can really help prevent the likelihood of contracting stomach cancer.
9. Help regulate blood sugar levels
It is not uncommon for pregnant women to experience rather fluctuating blood sugar levels during pregnancy, towards both extremes. This, however, can take a toll on your body and physical health.
Green peas help maintain and regulate the levels of sugar in your blood as they are a rich source of proteins and fiber. These nutrients can greatly assist in regulating blood sugar levels as well as in the digestion process.
Related Reading: Sugarcane Juice During Pregnancy- Health Benefits And Precautions
10. Peas help improve eyesight
This too is not a benefit specific to pregnant women but is no less relevant regardless. Green peas are very rich in Vitamin A, which is essential for improving eyesight and maintaining crystal-clear vision. Hormone fluctuation during pregnancy may affect the eyesight of the mother. Studies also emphasize eating peas cab improves vision.
11. They help prevent constipation and improve digestive health
Digestive health is an often-overlooked aspect of one’s body, despite playing a rather crucial role in one’s overall physical health. It is especially imperative that you maintain good digestive health during pregnancy, as it can be a time of great strain for your body.
The rich amounts of fiber present in green peas can go a long way in helping with just that, as they greatly improve the digestive process, regulate bowel movements, and prevent constipation.
12. They help boost immunity
As mentioned earlier, the increased nutritional demands of the fetus during pregnancy can take quite a toll on the mother’s body. As a result, it is not unusual for women to experience a certain decline in their immune systems. As a result, they are susceptible to a number of ailments. Green peas are rich in a number of nutrients, a lot of which go a long way in boosting your immunity. This can help prevent a number of such ailments and improve your overall health.
Risks And Precautions Of Eating Peas During Pregnancy
As mentioned above, green peas have quite an elaborate nutritional profile and as such, they offer no small number of benefits to both your health, as well as the health of your child. It is, therefore, safe to say that consuming green peas has virtually no risks, as they offer a lot of essential nutrients and have a low caloric content.
That being said, consuming anything in excess is sure to have an adverse effect on one’s health. In the case of green peas, this takes the form of causing gas and digestive discomfort when consumed in excess. Some of the precautions you can take to avoid such risks and maximize nutritional intake are:
- Consult your dietician to determine the ideal amount of peas for you to consume per day
- Buy peas from a trusted source – it is safe to buy them fresh or frozen, so long as you can trust the source
- Be sure to clean them properly while cooking to avoid germs and bacteria.
As is the case with all other foods, green peas may only prove beneficial when consumed in moderation. Other than that, it is a highly beneficial, low-calorie food with minimal risk, and as such it most certainly deserves a place in your pregnancy diet.
There is no one answer to this question. The general recommendation is to consume roughly 1/3 – ½ cups’ worth of green peas per day.
However, it is strongly advised that you consult your dietician for a more personal, informed opinion. Regardless, it is also advised that you do not consume too much, as it can cause certain issues, like gas.
There is no shortage in the number of ways to prepare green peas. There are some healthy and delicious recipes to be found online. Fried green peas during pregnancy is one common option, usually in the form of fried rice, though fried foods are generally not recommended.
On the other hand, dried green peas during pregnancy is also a rather common choice, whether as part of a bigger dish or simply as a light snack.
There isn’t any evidence to suggest that either variety would be particularly harmful, at least when consumed in moderation. White peas during pregnancy, in particular, are said to be a rather great source of protein.
However, when consumed in excess, especially yellow peas during pregnancy, it can potentially lead to certain issues like gas.