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The demand for both energy and nutrients is increased during pregnancy. The
sole most important thing a mother can do for her baby is to eat a healthy, wellbalanced diet. From the day the mother conceives the child to the day he is born, a wellbalanced diet is necessary. One that includes foods from all food groups in appropriate
amounts to ensure proper nutrition. Proper nutrition ensures that all essential nutrients
are supplied to the body to maintain optimal health and well-being. Good nutrition
benefits the pregnant mother and child in many different aspects of health. It is essential
for normal organ development and functioning, especially for reproduction, growth, and
maintenance. It is also beneficial for optimum activity level and working efficiency and
for resistance to infection and disease.
Pregnancy is indeed one of the most crucial parts of a life of a mother, so as for
her child. Just as the area of childbearing and childrearing is becoming a major of focus
of the nursing, it is the role of the nurses to intervene and to encourage the clients to
modify their health practices especially on the aspect of nutrition and diet. This fact is
stressed considerably because in order to have the healthy adults, nurses must
promote healthy lifestyles of childbearing women and their families right from the time of
children are born until they reach adulthood. Thus, nurses should be the primary
advocate and catalyst of change and development in health of the mother and her child.
This is when health promotion and patient teaching is emphasized. On both sides of the
mother and nurse, it may not be an easy process to have a modification in health
behaviors and in dietary practices for a change in nutritional pattern can be a lonely and
seemingly unrewarding endeavour as results come slowly. Nurses can begin their
intervention by emphasizing the basis for nutritional needs in pregnancy, pointing out
that she is building a new person. Based on this, nurse will explain what nutritional
deficits you have identified, and then show the woman how to change her nutritional
pattern to improve this situation. It is also important to know that pregnant women are
commonly highly-enthused to adopt healthy behaviors for the sake of their babys
health. For pregnancy involves a major life change, nurses can express to the mother
encouragement and support. Lastly, the nurse may ask the patient to list what foods

they eat daily and to bring in a chart to show at a prenatal visit is an effective motivating
technique. As the studies suggest, positive change in behavior change or Hawthorne
effect can occur because of the attention received. Because of this effect, the average
woman will eat better than she usually does so her list of food looks better when she
presents it.

Nursing process is highly-stressed in any intervention the nurse does. It is a stepby-step cycle that is modifiable and encourages and empowers the patient to be actively
involved in planning her care.

Assess the patient for any necessary interventions

needed especially on her dietary practices and nutritional practices. It begins with a
womans preconceptual nutritional patterns. Also, determine if her diet and nutritional
status is adequate and evaluate any practices that could affect eating habits. In
diagnosing, consider the status and needs of the woman and the desired health and
growth of the mother and her child. In planning, certain criteria should be considered. It
should be specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time bound. The nurse can
also refer the patient to nutritionist-dietician to help them plan their nutrition. Consider
also the factors like culture and lifestyle that gives different meanings to food. In
implementing, the nurse can perform any intervention discussed above or anything
suitable on the nursing diagnosis of the patient. Lastly, for the evaluating, rely on the
important data, like weight, energy level, general appearance, bowel function, and
urinalysis and haemoglobin findings. Also, assess the patients compliance on the
interventions promoted and the plan provided for her. Encourage her to be honest
whether she is following the plan and if not, the nurse can modify according to the
patients lifestyle and degree of motivation.

Pilliteri, A. (Ed.). (2014). Maternal & Child Health Nursing (7th ed.). Philadelphia, PA:
Lippincott Williams & Wilkins

Haas, H.V. (2002). Nutrition during Pregnancy. Retrieved from