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If you are expecting a child, a balanced and healthy diet is very important. The adequate supply of nutrients and vitamins plays a crucial role. Here you can find out which vitamins are particularly important for pregnant women.
Vitamins Are Important During Pregnancy
Many women believe that they have to eat “for two” during pregnancy. In fact, the calorie requirement is hardly increased in the first four months of pregnancy. And even after that, it is only about 250 kilo-calories more per day. The decisive factor is not the amount, but the content of the food, it should contain enough nutrients.
Vitamins are particularly important for pregnant women, as they promote both the development of the unborn child and the health of the expectant mother. Vitamins for pregnant women, which are of particular importance, are especially folic acid, vitamin B complex, vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin D.
1. Folic Acid
Folic acid – also a B vitamin – plays a crucial role in the formation of red blood cells. It is also responsible for cell division and growth. A deficiency can, therefore, lead, among other things, to anemia and indigestion in pregnant women. In addition, an undersupply can also have serious consequences for your baby, since a lack of folic acid can cause a so-called neural tube defect, malformations in the spinal cord area and in the brain. Undersupply can also lead to miscarriage.
Therefore, taking these vitamins is especially important for pregnant women. Since the need for folic acid rises sharply at the beginning of pregnancy and the supply through normal food can hardly be covered, Gynecologists advise pregnant women or women who wish to have a child as early as possible an adequate supply of folic acid -for example through appropriate dietary supplements- to prevent neural tube defects in your baby.
A daily dose of 600 micro-grams is recommended. Foods that contain a lot of folic acids include spinach, broccoli, various types of cabbage such as cauliflower, rose and kale, endive, egg yolk, asparagus, tomatoes, potatoes, bananas, oranges, mangoes, fish, dairy products, whole rye cereals, and wheat germ.
2. Vitamin B
In addition to folic acid, other vitamins of the vitamin B complex are also important vitamins for pregnant women: A lack of vitamin B 1 can, for example, trigger heart failure in both you and your baby. With a severe lack of vitamin B 2, birth defects in the unborn child, such as a cleft lip, are possible. If you experience nausea during pregnancy, you should make sure that you have an adequate supply of vitamin B 6, as this will reduce nausea. The intake of vitamin B 12, on the other hand, is important because this vitamin plays a major role in the development of the child’s brain and nervous system.
Eggs, meat, fish, nuts and dairy products contain the vitamins of the vitamin B complex. Since a deficiency of these vitamins is very rare for pregnant women, you can usually do without appropriate food supplements even during pregnancy. If in doubt, you should contact your doctor.
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3. Vitamin D
Vitamin D is also part of the vitamins for pregnant women, which play a central role in the unborn child because it contributes to bone formation and tooth growth in the baby. The need can usually be met by enjoying dairy products. Egg yolk, cod liver oil, and fish – especially mackerel, herring, and trout – are also rich in vitamin D.
Furthermore, these vitamins are formed for pregnant women by sunlight or daylight. Just ten minutes of daylight is enough for the body to produce enough vitamin D. Therefore, you should take regular walks during pregnancy.
4. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is also an important component of the vitamins for pregnant women. According to a Danish study, this vitamin has a decisive influence on the development of the brain in the unborn child. In addition, a lack of vitamin C can trigger a premature blister jump. A sufficient supply of this vitamin is not only important for your baby, but also for you as a mother-to-be, as it protects – like many other vitamins for pregnant women – from infections.
From the fourth month of pregnancy, the recommended daily dose increases from 100 milligrams to 110 milligrams per day. During breastfeeding, the recommended dose is even 150 milligrams a day. You can cover your needs with just one paprika or two kiwis or two oranges a day. Dark currants and sea buckthorn berries are also rich in vitamin C. Vegetables that contain these important vitamins for pregnant women include broccoli and Brussels sprouts.
5. Vitamin A
Vitamin A is also one of the vitamins for pregnant women, which is particularly important because it has a positive effect on the development of the child: Vitamin A is jointly responsible for the formation of cells. Nevertheless, the daily requirement during pregnancy increases only slightly.
Foods that contain vitamin A include peppers, apricots, spinach, pumpkins, carrots, kale, and fish. However, you should make sure that you do not consume too much vitamin A, because too high doses can damage the child during pregnancy. Possible consequences are liver damage, growth disorders, damage to the heart, palate and eyes and skin changes. Since especially the liver contains a lot of vitamin A, you should avoid this food during pregnancy. You should also refrain from taking vitamin A tablets. So you can see that the right mix of vitamins for pregnant women is important.
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Finally, vitamins for pregnant women are among the nutrients that play a central role in both the development of the baby and the health of the expectant mother. If you are expecting a child, you should, therefore, take care to take enough vitamins. However, special care should be taken with vitamin A, since an excess of it can also be harmful to your baby.