Some of the most vital development of an individual’s life goes on in their mother’s womb and the environment that a baby encounters there can impact their entire life which makes nutrition for pregnant women so important.
Pregnancy nutrition is also important for the ways in which it impacts the mother and her future health.
Supplements not a substitute for healthy eating
The American Pregnancy website recommends that nutrition for pregnant women should include a healthy and varied diet rich in nutrients. Supplements are not a substitute for healthy eating and should only be taken if there is a need and if they have been cleared with the health care provider:
- Vitamin A and Beta carotene is important to include in the pregnancy diet because it helps teeth and bones grow.
- Vitamin D is also very important for strong bones and teeth.
- Vitamin E should be part of nutrition for pregnant women because it promotes formation of muscle and red blood cells.
- Vitamin C helps develop an healthy immune system, protects from tissue damage and helps in iron absorption.
- Thiamin/B1 helps regulate the nervous system and improves energy.
- Riboflavin/B2 improves eyesight, maintains good skin.
- Niacin/B3 is important for digestion, healthy skin and nerves.
- Pyridoxine/B6 helps control nausea and creates RBCs.
- Folic acid helps prevent birth defects and is very important in the first trimester.
- Calcium is needed for building bones, functioning of nerves and muscles and also to prevent blood clots and should be part of nutrition for pregnant women.
- Iron promotes formation of hemoglobin and prevents anemia as well as premature labor and delivery.
- Zinc aids in producing insulin and enzymes.
Nutrition for pregnant women is important for the woman as well as her unborn child
There is literally a lot that pregnancy takes out of a woman’s body. Whatever requirement there is for baby’s development is extracted which may negatively impact a woman if she is nutritionally deficient.
For instance when they say that a woman loses a tooth for every child she bears, there is some truth in this. Often the calcium requirement required for the baby’s development may be obtained at the cost of the mother’s. So it is important for a pregnant woman to eat well and take care of her health so that there are no negative impacts on her health and wellbeing as a result of the pregnancy.
Other reasons why nutrition is so important in pregnancy
There is an optimum amount of weight that each woman should gain during pregnancy depending upon her pre-pregnancy weight and individual requirements. Any more or less may not be advisable.
Nutrition for pregnant women is also vital because insufficient weight gain may mean that the baby is not getting the kind of nourishment it needs and that the woman doesn’t have sufficient stores needed for childbirth and breastfeeding.
Too much weight gain could mean higher risk of pregnancy complications for the woman and extra large babies, which can be problematic for the mother and baby.