What Every Expecting Mom Should Know About DHA

Good Pregnancy Eats 

Have you ever heard of docosahexaenoic acid, or DHA for short? Many moms have not heard of DHA or are unsure about what this nutrient really is. Keep reading to learn what DHA is exactly and how it can help both you and baby.

 

What is DHA and why is it important?DHA helps baby's brain and eyes to develop

DHA is part of a healthy group of fats called omega-3 fatty acids. Individuals of all ages need DHA because it is an important nutrient for the brain and eyes. DHA also has many benefits during pregnancy.

Lower risk of preterm birth, increased gestational length, and increased birth weight are only a few of these benefits. DHA also supports healthy development of baby’s nervous system and eyes. In the third trimester the fetus has the greatest needs for DHA to help with healthy brain develop.

For these reasons, a mother’s needs for DHA increase during pregnancy. Many pregnant women consume only 50mg of DHA per day, compared to the recommended 300mg per day. The body is able to synthesize small amounts of DHA from other omega 3 fatty acids. However, this amount is not large enough to meet the needs of the growing fetus. That is why you should get enough DHA from foods on a regular basis throughout your pregnancy.

What foods contain DHA? DHA is found in fish like salmon and in fortified eggs

  • Seafood
  • DHA fortified orange juice
  • DHA fortified eggs
  • DHA fortified milk

 

Make this easy Crustless Quiche!  

This recipe is a tasty way to meet your DHA needs. Each serving provides 210mg of DHA. Enjoy this easy Crustless Quiche for breakfast, brunch, or as a side.

This quiche bakes in an 8-ounce ramekin dish. Related image

If you don’t have a ramekin dish you can also pour the batter into a muffin tray to bake, like I did in this picture below.

 

Ingredients:

Serves 2 

  • 2 eggs
  • 5 tablespoons whole milk
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons half-and-half
  • 1/6 cup grated sharp cheddar
  • 1/3 medium onion, chopped and sautéed
  • 2 ounces canned pink salmon, skinless and boneless
  • 1/4 cup cooked spinach, drained and patted dry and chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • Nonstick baking spray

 

Keep you and baby safe with these food safety tips:

-Always start by washing your hands with warm water and soap before cooking

-If you’re using fresh spinach wash it in a colander under cold running water before cooking

-After handling raw eggs clean up any egg spills and wash your hands with warm soapy water

-Avoid using cans that are swollen or dented

-Refrigerate any leftovers and reheat them before eating

 

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 425ºF.
  2. Whisk the eggs in a large bowl and add the milk and half-and-half.
  3. Whisk together thoroughly and then stir in the shredded cheese, onion, pink salmon, spinach, salt, and pepper.
  4. Spray two small 8-ounce ramekin dishes with nonstick baking spray.
  5. Pour the egg mixture evenly into each ramekin.
  6. Bake for 20-30 minutes. If the edges start to burn, wrap aluminum foil over the edges.
  7. If the quiche still has a liquidy and jiggly center, bake for another 10 minutes. If firm, remove from the oven and allow it to cool slightly before serving. Serve hot and enjoy!

 

 

 

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Photo credits:
Microsoft: baby with glasses, eggs. 

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