Key Nutrients to Eat when you are trying to Conceive

Key Nutrients to Eat when you are trying to Conceive

Are you Planning Pregnancy?

Obsessing over what to eat during pregnancy, how will you shed those extra kilos post pregnancy?

You need to understand one thing while planning pregnancy: If you are healthy before you conceive you will be healthy post pregnancy.

So what about the time when you are planning pregnancy?

Is it even important to think about diet and exercise even while planning pregnancy?

Conception not only involves your physiology but your brain, mind, hormones altogether

Allow your body to be the best by eating healthy, sleeping well, exercising and meditating.’’

Certain nutrients are of major importance when you are planning pregnancy

Whenever you visit a gynecologist and talk about getting pregnant, they write certain supplements and give you.

What are they and why do you need them?

  1. Folic Acid

It is Important to know one fact that neural tube closes by 28 days of gestation which is even before you come to know you are pregnant. Hence supplementation should start before you plan pregnancy.


  • Prevents neural tube defects like spina bifida or absence of brain
  • Reduction in birth defects


  • Present in both animal and plant foods.
  • Liver (sheep, goat), Eggs, Chicken, Cow’s Milk, Fish
  • Pulses, Dark green leafy vegetables, Legumes, Orange juice, Gingelly Seeds.

Recommended Dietary Allowances: 400 – 800 mcg/day Prior conception

  1. Calcium

Major element in the body. It might help you to conceive quickly and it is very important to stock your body with enough calcium as the baby will need it for their growth and bones.

If you do not have calcium reserves for yourself you might end up with bone problems in later life


  • Bone Formation
  • Tooth Formation
  • Growth
  • Contraction of muscles
  • Action of heart


  • Milk and milk products
  • Leafy vegetables: Fenugreek(methi), Amaranth, Drumstick leaves
  • Cereal: Ragi, Amaranth (Rajkeera)

Recommended Dietary Allowances: 1000mg/day


  • Vitamin D is essential in transferring calcium to the baby.
  • 15-20 minutes sun exposure is adequate to get this vitamin working in the body
  • It is found in fatty fishes like salmon and mackerel, fish liver oils
  • Small amounts in cheese and egg yolks
  • RDA: 600IU
  1. Iron


  • Transports And stores oxygen
  • Formation of Red Blood cells


  • Animal Foods: Liver, Red meat.
  • Plant food: Cereals: Wheat, Bajra, Ragi

Green leafy vegetables

Recommended Dietary Allowances: 21 mg/day

  1. Zinc

It is present in all cells, tissues, organs, fluids and secretions


  •     Essential for normal growth, development, reproduction
  •     Maintains healthy appetite


  •     Animal food: Eggs, Poultry, Dairy products
  •     Plant food: Outer layer of grain, nuts, fruits and vegetables

Recommended Dietary Allowances: 10 mg/day


  • Eat wholesome home cooked meals
  • Include fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Include Nuts and Oil seeds
  • Exercise (Without this body won’t absorb calcium)
  • Destress and sleep better

Include Prebiotics (Banana, Garlic, Onions, Whole grains) and Pro Biotics (Yogurt, Pickles)'

Dt. Sana Rehan Shaikh

Nutritionist/Clinical Dietitian/Certified Diabetes Educator Mscdfsm/PgD/CDE/CPT