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Is Cutting Carbs Okay During Pregnancy?

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Here’s a question from one of my subscribers:


Hi Michelle,


You don’t know how helpful you are! You have given me enough self-confidence to go through this journey. Right now I am four weeks pregnant and I really want to avoid gaining too much weight over the next eight months. I generally keep my weight down by keeping my carb intake low. Is that okay? What is considered to be a “healthy” amount of carbs for a pregnant woman?


Thank you,
Tara, USA


My Opinion
Good question, Tara! This is definitely a hot topic considering so many people are focused on eliminating carbs completely from their diet today.


My opinion on this subject is: do not eliminate any food groups from your diet, especially during pregnancy.


Now that doesn’t mean you should go crazy eating muffins, cakes, and cookies—no way! What it does mean is that you should be trying to eat a healthy well-balanced diet, including good quality carbs, to make sure both you and your little one are well taken care of nutritionally.


So what exactly are “good quality carbs”?

Examples of good quality carbs include brown rice and whole grain oats. The general rule is to stay away from things made with white flour and loaded with fat and sugar. My own personal rule of thumb is to eat foods as close to their original state as possible—so the grittier the texture, the better.


You should also eat a good amount of vegetables at every meal and combine your protein and carbohydrates to make sure you have a well-balanced meal. For example, try a chicken stir-fry with rice or chicken quesadillas with a side salad.


Take a look at the delicious recipe I’ve included below—yummy Chicken and Avocado Quesadillas that will get you started on eating healthy and balancing your food groups.


And for lots more tips on which foods you should be eating during your pregnancy and which to avoid (including how to outsmart your food cravings!), check out my kit, Pregnancy Without Pounds. Discover how to eat right for your body type and your baby. Get your copy here today!


Now here’s one of my favorite recipes:


Chicken and Avocado Quesadilla
Cook and prep time: 15 min. prep, 12 min. cook
Serves: 4


Ingredients:
8 Mexican flour tortillas (whole wheat)
1 cup Monterey Jack cheese, grated and tightly packed
1 avocado, diced
2 large chicken breast, poached
4 tablespoons cilantro, chopped finely
1 teaspoon Cajun spice


Directions:
1. Heat a skillet and spray with oil.
2. Place the tortilla on the skillet and top with a sprinkle of cheese, diced chicken, avocado, cilantro, and a sprinkle of Cajun spice.
3. Place another tortilla on top of the ingredients and carefully turn over when cheese melts.
4. Cut into quarters.
5. Repeat the process until all the ingredients have been used.


Note: You can also use a sandwich press to make your quesadilla. You will not need to flip it.

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