Picture this.\r\nIt is late in the evening, dinner is done and you are sitting comfortably watching TV, feet up. Baby is kicking vigorously in your tummy.\u00a0\r\nSuddenly, and out of the blue, you are craving and craving for .... durians!!\r\n\r\nLucky for you, it's that time of the year again. The fruits are bountiful, choices are ripe and variety aplenty. Drop by your favourite stall and go for it, I say.\r\nSome Moms. however, may have reservations partaking of this rich offering especially when pregnant. With so much information and well-meaning advice out there, it is easy to get lost in translation.\r\nNot to worry. We have got you covered. Having delved into the many myths and legends about that fruit, here is a smattering of information for you to digest, (pun intended).\r\n\r\nIt's The Season\r\nThe Malaysian Durian season runs roughly from April right up to September every year.\r\nThe Northern Region sees its first fruiting in April, with the rest of the regions coming along around late May. June and July are the durian's most prolific months, with the season tapering around September.\r\nSo if you are hankering for a taste of that creamy, delicious fruit, now is the time to go out and get them.\r\n\r\nYummy, Yummy In My Tummy\r\nIn recent years, the popularity of this heavenly fruit has skyrocketed globally. With that came international recognition. The durian has been crowned King of the Fruits. And about time, I say! No other fruit compares to this spiny delight. Its taste and smell is so unique, you either love it, or hate it.\u00a0\r\n\u00a0Yum-ness aside, are there benefits in eating this delectable wonder? And, can expectant Moms eat it?\r\nThe short answer is a resounding YES!!!\u00a0\r\nMoms, fear not, durians are perfectly safe to eat during pregnancy, when consumed in moderation. The durian, however, is not only a yummy fruit, it has a fascinating nutritional backstory.\r\nHungering for more? Well, read on to find out.\r\nYin & Yang of Food\r\n\r\nIn Chinese culture, foods are categorised into heaty, cooling or neutral foods.\r\nIt is believed that consuming too much of either heaty or cooling foods upsets the constitution of the body and can bring about illness. To be in the pink of health, you will need to delicately balance your consumption of heaty and cooling foods to achieve an equilibrium. Neutral foods can be consumed all the time.\r\nIn Malaysia, that is like walking a tightrope, because, let's face it, the Malaysian food scene is a riot of choice, styles and preparations.\r\nLooking at the above image, durians fall into the heaty category. To ensure you maintain the equilibrium, pair your durians with mangosteens. At any rate, most durian stalls also sell mangosteens.\u00a0\r\n\r\nVariety\r\nIn pregnancy, whether it is your first or subsequent ones, your body experiences a lot of changes. Sometimes those changes affect taste buds and you may find your usual bevy of favourites unappetising.\u00a0\r\nWith this in mind, your favourite durian may also not be up to par. You could be put off by its overpowering smell or prefer not to eat it as a fruit. But you may be still hankering for a taste of its creamy goodness.\r\nNot to worry, the durian is a very versatile fruit and can be made to suit any taste and fancy.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nSome Like It Hot\r\n\r\n\r\nOne of the best ways to have it hot is in the form of Pengat Durian. It is akin to the Pengat Pisang, but with durian instead of pisang in it. The soup should be served steaming hot. It makes a nice ending to a meal, or alternatively, served on its own, perhaps at teatime.\u00a0\r\nYou can hunt it down at local haunts or try making it yourself, if you would like to challenge your culinary skills.\r\nAlternatively, you could have durian with pulut rice, which is a variation of the more common, mango sticky rice. Have it as a snack or a dessert, if you like. In some cultures, durian flesh is cooked with white rice and then eaten with dishes.\u00a0\r\nTry one or all, in your own time.\r\nAs pregnancy advances, and baby grows, your uterus will push up against your stomach, sometimes making eating a challenge, since you will satiate very quickly.\r\nIf you are not able to stomach whole servings of these rich offerings, consider snacking on samplers of them. Daddy-to-be can help finish the rest, if you are unable to do so.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nSome Like It Cold\r\n\r\n\r\nPregnancies flush your body with hormones. These hormones, along with the little one, can raise your body temperature, making you feel hot and sweaty all the time. This is especially true as pregnancy progresses.\r\nThat being case, hot desserts are out of the question!\r\nThe durian is such a versatile fruit, you can do almost anything with it. Satisfy your cravings with a scoop, or two, of durian ice cream. Sample durian macarons, durian chendol or those delicate but delicious durian crepes, for variety.\r\nHave them on your own, or scoop a smidgen for a taste.\r\n\r\nHealth Benefits\r\nThis thorny fruit contains a treasure trove of health benefits, hitherto unknown. For too long, the durian has had a lot of bad press about it.\r\nAll of that is about to change.\r\nThe Institute of Bioproduct Development at Universiti Teknologi Malaysia has done an interesting study on the Nutritional Contents and Benefits of Durian. The study makes a fascinating read, and if you might like to know more about our delectable treasure, just click the link and read all about it.\r\n\r\nChockful Of Vitamins\r\nContrary to popular opinion, the durian is chock full of vitamins, minerals and nutrients. Additionally, it also contains protein, carbohydrates and fibre. Dare I say it, the durian looks like a whole food.\r\nFor expectant Moms, durians, in moderation would be good for baby, and good for you.\r\nSome Moms make meal exchanges when they feel a durian craving coming on. Instead of overeating, they eat the durian as a meal onto itself. The creamy food satisfies and satiates. If this is made as an occasion rather than the norm, it should be alright.\r\n\r\nKeeping Mommy And Baby Healthy\r\nParsing through the list of vitamins, minerals and nutrients, here is a breakdown of the goodies found in the tasty durian.\r\n\r\n\r\nFolic Acid And Iron\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nFolic acid and iron are crucial to a foetus' development.\r\nFolic acid helps tissue growth and aids in the development of the baby's brain, spine and neural tube, thus preventing spina bifida or anencephaly.\r\nIron is also important for both Mommy and baby, since it is the building block required for blood production.\u00a0\r\nWhen pregnant, your body needs to produce about 50% more blood. In addition to that, iron is also used make blood for baby's own circulatory system.\u00a0\r\nAn iron deficiency can cause anaemia.\r\nMild anaemia could cause fatigue, weakness and headaches, among other symptoms. If the condition is not treated and becomes severe, it could trigger a premature birth, low birth weight, or even infant fatality.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nCalcium and Potassium\r\n\r\n\r\nIf iron is the building block for blood, these two are building blocks for bones.\r\nWhile our bones comprise mostly of calcium, potassium is a key player in its distribution. It also keeps that calcium locked tightly in your bones, among its many benefits.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nTrytophan\r\n\r\n\r\nDurians contain tryptophan which is an amino acid. Tryptophan is needed to increase the levels of serotonin and melatonin, which are hormones.\r\nThese three aid sleep and sleep wake cycles. Sleep as you know is very important for good health. This is even more so with baby on the way.\u00a0\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nFibre\r\n\r\n\r\nThere is nothing like being regular, if you know what I mean.\r\nSome expectant Mommies breeze through pregnancy without any problems. However, there are a good number out there who come down with constipation. Filling up on fibre is a good aid in resolving that problem, in addition to drinking lots of water and liquids.\r\nFibre also works to keep that rumble in your tummy contained. Hunger can be a constant in some pregnancies. Satiate it with whole foods, which include whole grains, yoghurt, nuts, and of course, fruit.\u00a0\r\nDurian flesh is creamy, filling and satisfying. A little may be sufficient to satiate your hunger pangs.\r\n\r\nCaloric Count\r\nThe durian is chock full of goodness but there is one disadvantage to it, and it is pretty big one.\r\nBrace yourself!\r\nIt is a high calorie food.\r\nSo if you are watching your weight, whether pregnant or otherwise, you will have to watch how much you consume.\u00a0\r\nGenerally, being overweight is not good for health and, being overweight in pregnancy may bring about complications. The same also applies if you are underweight. In fact, when it comes to weight, the Goldilocks Theorem applies, it must be just right!\r\nBy all means, have your tasty treat, but in moderation.\r\nLooking on the bright side, the durian contains no cholesterol.\u00a0\r\n\r\nOne Last Thing\r\nThe only constant in pregnancy, is change.\r\nSome may be able to gasak anything and everything, and be as fine as a fiddle. Other expectant Moms, may face digestion issues. While studies have found that durians aid digestion, things may not be plain sailing during pregnancy.\r\nTo make sure you do not overstretch your tummy, a word to the wise, go slow. The durian, wins hands down as a beneficial food, but only when taken in moderation, whether within or outside pregnancy.\r\nAnd now if you are itching to dash out the door for your feast, check out these places within the Klang Valley for servings of fresh durian.\r\nEnjoy!