Eating durian during pregnancy: What you should know

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IT'S NOT A PREGNANCY SUPERFOOD

Being pregnant is a good excuse to binge on durians, right? You might have even heard that the King of Fruit is a highly nutritious superfood.

There is no scientific proof that durian is a pregnancy superfood, says Dr Goh Shen Li, consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist in SL Goh Women's Clinic at Mount Alvernia Medical Centre D.

IT'S HIGH IN SUGAR AND CARBS

Go ahead and enjoy it if you like, but exercise moderation.

"That's because durians are high in sugar and carbohydrates - just five medium-sized seeds contain about 160 calories, more than a 330ml can of cola which has 140 calories," Dr Goh shares.

That is also why expectant women who have gestational diabetes should stay away from the fruit.

IT CAN HELP YOUR UNBORN BABY GAIN WEIGHT, BUT...

But being a high-calorie fruit, taking durian can help your unborn baby gain weight if he is small due to poor maternal weight gain - and not due to placental or umbilical cord problems, Dr Goh adds. Check with your doctor first.

Besides increasing your carbohydrate intake, it's important to include protein-rich foods, such as eggs and meat, in your diet.

DON'T EAT FOR TWO

Remember that eating for two during pregnancy is an outdated notion.

The recommended weight gain during pregnancy is 12kg to 16kg, says Dr Tan Wei Ching, a senior consultant at Singapore General Hospital's (SGH) Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

Dr Ng says that, on average, most women put on the bulk of the weight in the second half of the pregnancy. In the first 20 weeks, the gain is only 2kg to 3kg.

This article was first published in Young Parents.

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