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When you get pregnant, it is widely recommended that you adopt a healthy, nutritious, and well-balanced diet that consists of plenty of fruits and vegetables. Green vegetables should definitely be included, as they contain many vitamins and minerals that are essential to the proper growth and development of a foetus. Capsicum, or bell pepper, is one such green veggie!
There are plenty of benefits of eating green capsicum during pregnancy. If you are pregnant, including capsicum in your diet is a great way to maintain your health throughout the nine month period. To know more about the benefits of eating capsicum during pregnancy, read on below!
Can You Eat Capsicum During Pregnancy?
Capsicum is a healthy vegetable that you can consume at any point in life. You can eat capsicum during your pregnancy, as it has tons of benefits. However, it should be eaten in the right form and quantity. Do not eat too much.
Nutritional Value of Capsicum
Capsicum is generally used in our cuisine to elevate flavour or enhance the visual appeal of the plate. But, there is a lot more to it! Capsicum contains a wide range of vitamins and minerals that are necessary for our body.
The nutritional constitution in 100g of capsicum is distributed as follows:
|Vitamin E||0.07 mg|
|Vitamin C||123 mg|
|Vitamin A||54.67 mcg|
|Vitamin B6||0.2 mg|
|Pantothenic acid||0.21 mcg|
|Omega-3 acids||37.08 mg|
|Omega- 6 acids||54 mg|
|Saturated fats||77.03 mg|
Source: IFCT 2017
Benefits of Eating Capsicum During Pregnancy
Capsicums are available in multiple colours (yellow, red, green), and each type has a specific set of benefits to offer during pregnancy.
1. Red Capsicum
Eating red capsicum during pregnancy is massively beneficial, since it contains cancer-preventive properties due to the presence of the antioxidant lycopene within it.
2. Green Capsicum
Green capsicum is highly recommended for women due to the presence of natural silicon in it, which keeps the nails and hair healthy during pregnancy.
3. Yellow Capsicum
The presence of lutein and zeaxanthin is quite high in yellow capsicum. They help in combating free radicals and boosting the immune system during pregnancy.
Side Effects of Excessive Consumption of Capsicum While Pregnant
Although eating capsicum is beneficial during pregnancy, in certain conditions, eating it may prove harmful for the mother-to-be and the baby.
Capsicum contains numerous seeds in it, which have a strong tendency of triggering allergies in a person who already has a pre-existing allergy. These can result in rashes on the body or excessive sneezing, which may not be safe during pregnancy. Similarly, consuming a lot of capsicum can upset the stomach, causing frequent stools or indigestion.
New mothers are strongly advised to limit their consumption of capsicum while breastfeeding, since it can make the breast milk spicy for the child. Similarly, it is best to stop eating capsicum a couple of weeks prior to delivery, since it can cause thinning of the blood, and may result in excessive bleeding during childbirth.
How to Choose the Right Capsicum & Store It
When purchasing capsicum from the market, opt for ones that are firm, and with evenly coloured skin that is smooth and spotless. Try not to buy capsicums that look dry or wrinkled. Make sure you wash the capsicum well before use or storage. Try your best to use them when they are fresh.
Capsicum Recipes for Pregnant Women
Capsicum can be consumed in a number of ways during pregnancy and in general as well. Here are a couple of recipes that can help you taste capsicum in all its glory.
1. Capsicum Gravy
Capsicum has a wonderful taste, and this gravy recipe will help you make the best of it in an easy way.
- Fennel seeds
- Cashew nuts
- Garam masala
- Ginger garlic paste
- Coriander powder
- Chilli powder
How To Prepare
- Take the fennel along with the cashew nuts, and blend them together properly.
- Take some oil in a pan. Heat it up, and add garam masala.
- Next, add chopped capsicums and onions to the pan, and stir them. Once well fried, add ginger garlic paste to the pan, and mix well.
- Finally, pour in the tomato puree, and stir the gravy well. Allow to cook in the pan for 3-5 minutes.
- Once done, pour some water into it, along with the rest of the spices, cashew paste, salt and other condiments, if required. Mix well, and let cook for 15 minutes or so.
- Once the gravy is prepared and oil separates, turn off the flame. Serve the gravy with roti or rice.
2. Capsicum Masala
A real finger-licking experience can stem from a wonderful preparation of capsicum masala, which can truly tickle the taste buds in your pregnancy!
- Cumin seeds
- Red chilli powder
- Green chillies
How To Prepare
- Take some oil in a pan and allow it to heat well.
- Add green chillies to it, and cook until their colour changes.
- Next, add chilli powder, cumin seeds, and turmeric, and stir well.
- Add chopped capsicum and fry.
- Then add chopped tomatoes, salt, and stir well. Let it cook for a while. Add more condiments as required.
- You can add grated coconut if you want.
- Later, add some water and bring the mixture to a boil.
- Let the oil separate from the masala. Once that happens, turn off the flame, and serve.
Consuming capsicums and other vegetables during pregnancy has a ton of advantages for the mother-to-be as well as the growing baby. Balancing that intake with a diet that provides all-around nutrition can help you stay in the pink of health throughout your pregnancy!
Also Read: Healthy Food Recipes for Pregnant Women