Here’s Exactly What To Eat Before Ultrasound: Pregnancy Edition

What To Eat Before Ultrasound

Pregnancy brings a whirlwind of emotions, from the excitement of new life to the nervousness of the unknown. Nestled within this journey are moments that feel almost magical, like seeing your baby for the first time on an ultrasound.

Ultrasounds, sometimes called sonograms, are not just routine check-ups; they are a window into the development and well-being of your little one. The two main types of pregnancy ultrasound are transvaginal ultrasound and abdominal ultrasound. The former produces sharper images when done earlier in the first trimester, while the latter is best used from the second trimester onward.

As a cornerstone of prenatal care, pregnancy ultrasounds provide valuable insights for healthcare providers, helping them monitor fetal growth, check for abnormalities, and ensure a healthy pregnancy journey.

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For many first-time moms (and even seasoned ones), the thought of an ultrasound can be thrilling and daunting at the same time. The anticipation of seeing your baby’s tiny features can be tempered by a bit of nervousness about the examination itself. But here’s the good news: a little preparation can help you feel more comfortable and make your ultrasound experience more enjoyable. 

Generally, no specific diet needs to be followed before an ultrasound during pregnancy. However, being sufficiently hydrated may help create a clear ultrasound picture. Additionally, a balanced meal or snack beforehand can help prevent hunger during this longer appointment. So, today, I’m sharing a round-up of foods and beverages that pregnant women can eat or drink before a pregnancy ultrasound to fuel and stay hydrated. 

7 Foods To Eat Before Ultrasound

Here’s Exactly What To Eat Before Ultrasound: Pregnancy Edition

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) experts say pregnant women should get at least one sonogram in the second trimester. This is usually done between weeks 18 and 22 of pregnancy. However, the exact timing and frequency of ultrasounds during pregnancy should be discussed with your provider. 

Fueling with the right foods and drinks an hour or two beforehand can be a real game-changer for getting you through the appointment. Balanced meals, snacks, and a moderate amount of fluids can help your tummy feel nice and settled, keep you properly hydrated, and may even encourage your little dancer to put on a show for the camera, resulting in clearer and more detailed images.

However, it’s important to note that research isn’t conclusive on whether specific foods can directly make a baby more active during an ultrasound. Join The Prenatal Nutrition Library App for the ultimate guide on staying hydrated during pregnancy, even during nausea. 

Here are 8 items that can help you feel your best during an ultrasound appointment and may indirectly result in clearer pictures and a smoother exam:

A Glass of Water

When it comes to the ultrasound appointment, hydration is key! Proper hydration helps those high-frequency sound waves easily travel in and out of your body for a more accurate view and result. Plus, adequate hydration supports amniotic fluid levels and may encourage your baby to move around more. 

During early pregnancy, doctor offices often recommend drinking enough to achieve a full bladder for a pelvic ultrasound. This may help push your uterus up and out of your pelvis for prime viewing. For transvaginal ultrasounds or abdominal ultrasounds later in pregnancy, this is typically not a necessary step.

Always follow the guidance of your practitioner. If having a full bladder is recommended for the type of ultrasound you’re doing, aim to drink one to two 8-ounce glasses of fluid (water) around an hour before showtime. 

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Herbal Tea (Decaffeinated)

A warm cup of herbal tea can be soothing and comforting before your ultrasound. Herbal teas like ginger, peppermint, or lemon balm are naturally decaffeinated. These options are generally safe during pregnancy and can help settle your stomach and reduce nausea, leading to a more enjoyable ultrasound. It may be recommended to avoid caffeinated drinks before the ultrasound.

A Small Snack with Protein

A serving of protein, such as a hard-boiled egg or a few ounces of grilled chicken or turkey, can provide sustained fuel and energy. The protein can help keep you feeling satiated and focused during the ultrasound. This can help prevent stable blood sugar levels and combat hunger during the appointment. 

Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

Snacking on fresh fruits and vegetables, like apple slices or carrot sticks, with your protein can be a refreshing option before your ultrasound. These are nutrient-dense foods that are generally well-tolerated to prevent an upset stomach. Additionally, the fiber content, antioxidants, and phytonutrients in fruits and vegetables offer many health benefits for mom and baby. 

7 Foods To Eat Before An Ultrasound

Whole Grain Toast with a Topping

A slice or two of whole-grain toast can be paired with a topping for a simple and satisfying pre-ultrasound snack. Opt for a topping like nut butter or a spread of avocado, which can provide a dose of quality fats and protein. The complex carbohydrates in whole grains can also help support your and your baby’s energy levels throughout the appointment.

Greek Yogurt

Greek yogurt is a great source of protein, calcium, and probiotics, making it a nutritious option before an ultrasound if you tolerate dairy. Choose a plain, unsweetened variety and top it with some fresh berries for an added dose of fiber and antioxidants. Add your own drizzle of honey or spoonful of nut butter to sweeten it! The probiotics in yogurt may also help alleviate digestive discomfort, leading to a more comfortable experience. 

Green Smoothie

A smoothie is a great choice if you want something easy to digest. Smoothies can also be a total lifesaver when not much sounds good to eat. Just be sure to include enough protein, such as protein powder or Greek yogurt, in your smoothie to support balanced blood sugar levels. 

Include a variety of greens like kale, spinach, or cucumber along with your fruit, protein source, and any extras. Green vegetables contain vitamins, minerals, and fiber to keep you and your little baby thriving. Smoothies provide hydrating power with a nutrient boost. Plus, it’s easy to digest, quick, portable, and simple to customize to your taste preferences. 

Help! what do I eat before an ultrasound during pregnancy?

Prepare for your ultrasound confidently, and nourish yourself and your baby with love and care.

As you can see, you’re not just showing up for your ultrasound appointment. Rather, you’re setting the stage for a feel-good appointment and possibly higher-quality ultrasound pictures with the right fuel beforehand. Besides that, you’re nourishing your body with all those essential pregnancy nutrients. 

Choose foods that help you feel your best for a comfortable experience. Ideally, you wan to avoid “heavy” or greasy foods that might leave you bloated and uncomfortable during the main event. This same information generally applies to “what to eat for breakfast before the pregnancy glucose test.”

If you’re thirsty for even more expert guidance on preconception and pregnancy nutrition, you’ve got to check out The Prenatal Nutrition Library (TPNL). We’ve created a one-stop app with science-backed recommendations and resources to keep you feeling your best while nourishing your growing little one.

Speaking of resources, we’ve put together this Free One-Week Sample Meal Plan that is easy and delicious! I’m talking about quick and expert-crafted meals. It doesn’t get any better than that. See you inside the library!

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