Prenatal Vitamin to Help Protect You and Your Unborn Baby During Pregnancy
You’ve probably heard your doctor say that it’s always preferable to work towards preventing illnesses rather than fighting illnesses once they’ve already begun. This is especially true during pregnancy, when your body is using so many of its resources to nurture your unborn baby. Proper nutrition, including a daily intake of vitamins, is the first step in illness prevention. A few pills a day can go a long way in ensuring that your baby grows healthy and strong in the womb and after birth.
By far the most important prenatal vitamin is folate. Folate can reduce the risk of birth defects like spina bifida and anencephaly, which are caused by neural tube abnormalities developed very early in the first trimester. Folate can protect your baby from these conditions; however, for it to be effective, it must be taken during the first four weeks of pregnancy when the neural tube is forming.
Many women are not certain that they are pregnant until the second or even third month of pregnancy, so if you are planning for a baby, you should start taking folate before you begin trying to conceive. For non-pregnant women, 400 micrograms of folate a day is sufficient; once you become pregnant, you should begin taking 1000 micrograms a day.
You can get an adequate dosage of folate in many breads and pastas and in dark green vegetables and orange fruits. If you are unsure if your diet provides enough folate, it’s best to take a daily vitamin supplement containing folic acid.
If you are pregnant or expect to be pregnant, start taking the vitamin folate to help protect your unborn baby during pregnancy and possible birth defects. Having the proper nutrition will help ensure a safe delivery when you give birth and a health and safe baby.
Mark Zakowski, M.D.
Over 120,000 Deliveries
Author, The Safe Baby System
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The Safe Baby System and the information on this blog is for educational purposes only and is not a replacement for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always consult a doctor or other qualified health provider regarding any medical condition.