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Diet & Nutrition

Black Gram in Pregnancy – Benefits and Precautions

Urad dal is a lentil that contains essential Omega-3 and Omega-6 Fatty Acids that are not prepared by the human body naturally. According to Indian Ayurvedic practices, urad dal called Masha during ancient times is highly beneficial during pregnancy. It is still widely used in Ayurvedic and alternative medicines. However, there are some speculations about its safe consumption during pregnancy.

Is it Safe to Eat Urad dal During Pregnancy?

Is it an old wives’ tale that urad dal is not safe to consume during pregnancy? Or is this a fact to be taken seriously? Urad dal is safe and beneficial to take during pregnancy if taken with some precautions, which is discussed in a section below. But first, we should know its benefits.

What Important Nutrients are found in Black Gram?

Black gram is not just rich in fatty acids, but has many other nutrients too:

NutrientNutritional value
Essential fatty acidsOne cup contains 603 mg omega-3 and 43 mg Omega-6.
Calories341 g 100 gms
Total Fat1.6 g per 100 gms
Sodium38 mg per 100 gms
Potassium983 mg per 100 gms
Total Carbohydrate59 g per 100 gms
Protein25 g per 100 gms
Calcium0.13 per 100 gms
Iron42 % per 100 gms
Vitamin B-615 % per 100 gms
Magnesium66 % per 100 gms

Source: https://www.lybrate.com/topic/black-gram-urad-dal-benefits-and-side-effects

5 Health Benefits of Urad Dal during Pregnancy

Packed with so many nutrients, urad dal is a power food that has the following benefits during pregnancy:

1. Fetal Brain Growth

The essential fatty acids in urad dal enhance fetal brain development.

2. Helps in digestion and urination

Fibre-rich urad dal helps sustain good gut bacteria that help with the digestion of food and our urinary system

3. Preventive benefits

The antioxidants in urad dal prevent various diseases. Antioxidants fight aging, cell and tissue damage and various types of cancer. They also help in keeping our hair and skin healthy.

4. Cholesterol check

The fatty acids can reduce high cholesterol levels in pregnant women who are at risk of cholesterol problems.

5. Bone benefits

Urad dal helps the body absorb calcium and has many minerals that keep the bones strong and healthy.

Delicious Urad Dal Laddu Recipe for Pregnant Women

There are dozens of urad dal recipes, but the most easy-to-make and super healthy is the urad dal laddu. It takes just a bit over half an hour to prepare this dry Indian sweet that can be eaten as a snack anytime, anywhere. Urad dal laddu during pregnancy is also a healthy option when you have cravings for something sweet!

Ingredients

  • Urad dal – 1 cup
  • Sugar – 1 cup
  • Ghee – 1/2 cup
  • Cashew nuts fried in ghee

How to Make

Dry roast urad dal properly so that the heat kills any bacteria. Then blend it in a blender. Add sugar and ghee. Shape the laddu’s into round balls. Fry some cashew nuts in ghee and top the laddus with the cashew nuts.

Precautions to Take while Consuming Black Gram when Pregnant

Urad dal should be washed well and cooked until it boils thoroughly. This is because it may contain dangerous bacteria like E. Coli, Listeria or Salmonella. Cooking it to the boiling point may destroy them. These bacteria can be especially harmful to pregnant women because they can cause diseases that may induce pre-term labor, miscarriage, stillbirth and other serious problems in a new-born baby. Avoid them when you eat out as you have no idea how well cooked they are. 

Do not eat too much of urad dal either during pregnancy. This is because it increases uric acid levels and excess of it can cause problems in the circulatory and kidney functions.

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