A-Z of pregnancy and nutrition: P is for...

When it comes to pregnancy, what does the letter P stand for? Find out in the latest edition of our pregnancy A-Z series

From pate through to the dreaded pregnancy piles, what does the letter P stand for when you're expecting?

Make sure you catch-up on our pregnancy alphabet so far - A / B/ C / D/ E / F / G / H / I / J / M

Pâté: Avoid all types of pâté, including vegetable, because it may contain Listeria. Pâté made from any type of liver should also be avoided due to its high vitamin A content. piles

Piles: Piles (haemorrhoids) are a common problem for pregnant women and a typical pregnancy symptom. They are caused by the weight of the uterus pressing on major blood vessels. This leads to a pooling of blood and ultimately causes the veins to enlarge and swell. In addition, the hormone progesterone relaxes the veins and allows the swelling to increase.

Piles are best prevented by eating a high fibre diet accompanied by plenty of fluid. If you have problems with piles, speak to your GP or midwife.

Placenta: The placenta is the organ that nourishes the foetus by transporting nutrients from your blood and removing waste products.

Poultry: Poultry is a food that unless handled properly can carry an increased risk of salmonella. Always store uncooked and cooked meats separately and check that all meats are cooked thoroughly (with no signs of pink or blood) before eating. Handle pre-cooked poultry with care. Only buy from a reputable source and ensure that it is kept thoroughly chilled and never eat if beyond its use before date. prolactin

Prolactin: Prolactin is the hormone that tells your breasts to produce milk for your baby. It is stimulated by suckling, so frequent feeding on demand will help to get milk supply established in the early weeks.

Stay tuned for our next instalment in pregnancy month. Make sure you read our post on how to keep your early pregnancy secret and watch our TalkMum pregnancy video diaries.

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