Because we have 5 chickens, I am always looking for recipes that use eggs. This is one of our favorites! We feed our chickens DHA-enriched feed to increase the DHA content of their yolks. I recommend buying DHA-enriched eggs if you can. DHA is an essential omega-3 fatty acid that is often deficient in our diets. DHA is especially important during pregnancy, lactation, and throughout childhood as it is essential for brain growth and development. It is important for adults too and research shows positive correlation with many diseases including depression, Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, arthritis, eye diseases, and cancer.
1 yellow onion, sliced
3 cups spinach, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
¼ tsp. black pepper
1 can diced tomatoes
1 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
Directions: Spray skillet with no-stick cooking spray. Add onion, cook for 3 minutes over medium heat. Stir in spinach, garlic, and pepper, and cook an additional 3 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and balsamic vinegar. Beat eggs together, and add egg mixture over spinach mixture. Reduce heat to medium-low and cover with lid. Cook for 10 minutes or until top of frittata is almost set. Preheat oven broiler. Remove lid and place skillet oven. Broil for 2 minutes. Cut into 4 wedges.
Eggs are also a great source of choline. Choline is a water-soluble vitamin that is also deficient is most of our diets. Like DHA, choline is critical during pregnancy as low choline intake is linked to neural tube defects and poor memory development in the baby. Choline is also important for heart health, is anti-inflammatory and may help prevent breast cancer. Besides choline and DHA, eggs are also a great source of protein, vitamin B12, riboflavin, and lutein.
It’s that time of year where I have fresh greens in my garden. I always like to include spinach because it’s so versatile: you can use it fresh in salads and sandwiches, cooked in omelets, soups, or used in a smoothie! Spinach is always an excellent food choice but especially during pregnancy. Spinach is rich in folate and folate needs increase dramatically during pregnancy as it is needed for cell division and growth. Folate is also critical during the first trimester and inadequate folate intake increases the risk of neural tube defects so it’s important to include plenty in your diet as well as taking a high-quality prenatal supplement.
This might be surprising, but canned tomatoes are even more nutritious than fresh ones! This is because when tomatoes are cooked, as they are with canned products, the heat process actually makes the lycopene in the tomato more bioavailable. Tomatoes that are canned are also typically picked at their peak ripeness and processed immediately so their flavor is maintained unlike some of our “fresh” tomatoes in the grocery store that have been sitting on shelves for weeks to ripen and be sold. Lycopene is a powerful antioxidant and can help protect against many disease states including cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure, including preeclampsia during pregnancy.