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Pregnancy Nutrition Should Include Folate or Folic Acid

Posted May 20 2009 9:14am
Folate, also called Folic Acid and Vitamin B9, is an essential nutrient for healthy pregnancy nutrition. Folic acid is a B vitamin that helps the body create healthy new cells. That is why folate is very important for pregnancy nutrition as hopeful mothers create new life. Moms who include sufficient folic acid in their diets are taking positive steps toward preventing birth defects, especially of the baby's brain or spine.

Everyone has heard the stories about pregnant women who can't control their mood swings. Plenty of medical research points to a deficiency of folic acid in pregnancy nutrition for fostering depression and other psychiatric disorders. In the book, "Food, Your Miracle Medicine" (Copyright 1993), Jean Carper states, " That folic acid can act as an antidepressant is no secret among scientists". The book goes on to point out that McGill University's Dr. Young found " accumulating evidence that folic acid deficiency can contribute to depressed mood", and that eliminating the deficiency often cures the depression.

For proper pregnancy nutrition, a woman needs about 800 mcg of folic acid daily. Nursing mothers can back that down to about 500 mcg. This level may not be easy for some to reach, as it requires up to six servings of foods such as spinach, beans or asparagus, every day. If a pregnant woman is not getting enough folate from whole foods, then a health food vitamin should be investigated.

Foods with folic acid in them include:
* Leafy, green vegetables
* Fruits
* Beans
* Peas
* Nuts

Some enriched breads, cereals and other grain products also contain folic acid. Again, it is important to be sure that the folate is attached to a natural whole food complex of B vitamins. You can find more effective whole food vitamins for pregnancy nutrition online than you will find in most retail stores. Just be sure to search for a natural health food vitamin for the highest quality pregnancy nutrition available today.

The added stress of pregnancy can create an increased demand for vitamins in the mother's body. When the body is in stress mode, more adrenal hormones are produced, which speeds up metabolism. This can cause a rapid depletion in nutrients stored in the mother's body thus robbing the mother and the fetus of valuable vitamins and minerals. That is why proper pregnancy nutrition requires a very safe, balanced diet including essential nutrients like folate or folic acid.
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