Maternal mortality in childbirth in developing countries is still high. The study describes the qualitative methods used to examine the knowledge, attitude, beliefs and behaviour related to nutrition and nutritional supplementation of pregnant women. The role of village midwives and cadres’ in relation to nutrition education resulted in improving nutritional behaviour of pregnant women to some extent, but poverty and culture restricted the ability of pregnant women to access better food. The study shows that the position of pregnant woman is low within the hierarchy of both the health care system and the power structures of the broader community. Husbands, mothers-in-law, village midwives, cadres and village leaders all have more power in determining nutrition during pregnancy. However, some women tried to eat better and more nutritious food in secret, thereby subverting culture and the authority of husbands and mothers-in-law.