How to Eat During Your Twin Pregnancy

If you're pregnant with twins or multiples, your body has extra nutritional needs. That doesn't mean doubling dessert or having seconds at every meal.

While you need additional calories, you have to make those calories count by providing the right nutritional values. You need an extra dose of protein to help build cells, carbohydrates for energy, iron to combat anemia, calcium to fortify your babies and bones, and folic acid to defeat birth defects.

The following items are ideal for offering nutritional value yet appealing flavor. Of course, you should check with your doctor about your personal nutritional needs.

Trail Mix

Pregnant woman making salad

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Protein is an important component in the creation of human cells, so it's a vital part of a healthy pregnancy diet. For mothers of twins or more, it's extra important to boost their protein intake.

Trail mix made with a variety of nuts is a fun and delicious snack. In addition to protein, nuts offer additional nutritional value. Almonds are loaded with Vitamin E, and cashews are rich in selenium, magnesium, phosphorus, and iron.

Combine them with other nut selections, such as pistachios, walnuts or peanuts. Customize your snack with the add-ins of your choice: raisins, dried cherries, multigrain cereal, mini pretzels, sunflower seeds or even some dark chocolate chips.

Raisin Bran

Most breakfast cereals are fortified with folic acid, a B vitamin that can drastically reduce the risk of birth defects when taken during pregnancy.

You can boost your intake by eating foods with folic acid. In addition, a high-fiber cereal will help keep your digestive system functioning in fine form. Cereal—especially eaten with a serving of milk—isn't just for breakfast. It makes a great snack!

Because it's so important, most pregnant women will be advised to take folic acid in the form of a supplement or prenatal multivitamin, before and during pregnancy.


Yogurt is rich in calcium, necessary for the development of your baby's bones and skeletal structure. It's also a good source of protein. It's available in flavors to satisfy any palate.

Beware of yogurt products that are enhanced with sugar and fat. To get the best nutritional benefits, start with plain low-fat or nonfat yogurt, and flavor it yourself. You can add honey or fruit for sweetness, nuts or granola for crunch, and a sprinkle of Brewer's yeast for added protein.


Seafood is delicious and nutritious, but many varieties aren't recommended for pregnant moms due to elevated mercury levels and other chemicals. Shrimp, however, are generally considered safe.

Shrimp are an excellent source of low-fat protein, selenium, and vitamin D. They're also versatile—easy to prepare and serve in stir-fries, pastas or even on their own with some cocktail sauce.

Just don't eat shrimp raw. Save the sushi or ceviche for after the babies are born.


Papaya is a tasty tropical fruit and a great choice for pregnant moms of multiples who are boosting their protein intake. The papaya is an amazingly rich source of proteolytic enzymes, which help enable the digestion of protein. It's also an excellent source of vitamin C.

It's known for its digestive benefits, and is also recommended for alleviating morning sickness!

Be sure to wash papaya—and all fruits and vegetables—thoroughly before preparing and serving to avoid bacterial contamination.


Hummus is a Middle Eastern dip made from chickpeas (garbanzo beans), a power-packed source of non-animal protein and fiber. They're also high in folic acid and manganese.

On their own, they're not that appetizing, but when prepared as hummus, they're outstanding!

Enjoy hummus as a dip with veggies, pita bread or whole-grain crackers, spread it on sandwiches in place of mayonnaise or use it as a salad topping.


Another high-protein food, eggs are also the richest source of choline, a nutrient needed in larger amounts during pregnancy for normal brain function and memory. Look for Omega-3 enhanced eggs, which promote vision and brain development in fetuses.

Plus, eggs are easy to prepare in a variety of ways. They're not just for breakfast either! Hard-cooked eggs are a great snack on their own. Or add chopped eggs to salads or sandwiches.

Chicken Sandwich

Many types of deli meat are associated with a risk of listeriosis, a bacteria particularly harmful to fetuses. If you're bypassing the deli counter, consider chicken as a sandwich alternative.

It's a low-fat source of protein and easily substitutes for turkey in your favorite sandwich. Grill, poach or broil chicken breasts, then slice thinly for sandwiches. Or chop coarsely for chicken salad.

Use whole-grain bread and add a dose of veggies to your sandwiches, such as thinly sliced cucumber, chopped celery, spinach leaves, or dark green lettuce.


Popeye would be proud! The sailor man who gained great strength by eating spinach would definitely recommend this powerhouse green vegetable for pregnant moms.

Spinach and other dark leafy greens are loaded with calcium, folic acid, vitamin K, and iron. It's also rich in vitamin C, fiber, carotenoids, lutein and bioflavonoids.

While Popeye's mode of choice—canned—is probably not the most flavorful preparation, there are numerous ways to consume it.

Fresh spinach makes a delicious salad. Add the green leaves to your sandwich or sauté it for stir-fries or pasta. Frozen spinach can be baked into casseroles or stirred into soups. Go green for your babies!

Peanut Butter Toast

Peanut butter is a kid's favorite, but it's not bad for their moms either. Whole-grain bread smeared with peanut butter is a great snack or breakfast treat.

Peanut butter offers the nutritional benefits of thiamin, niacin, potassium, and zinc. It's high in the protein that moms of multiples need and also offers some iron. It also provides a source of healthy fat, a better option than butter or margarine which don't have the nutritional side benefits.

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