Navigating Pregnancy and COVID-19

If you’re planning a pregnancy or are already expecting, it’s natural to feel vulnerable at the best of times. During the coronavirus pandemic, those feelings of vulnerability are probably even more intense. Looking after yourself during pregnancy is always a must. But COVID-19 has made it more important than ever.

Rest, a healthy diet and plenty of sleep are a great start. And just taking a moment to consider what you put into your body can work wonders, too – especially in these strange and uncertain times.

The importance of iron

The best pregnancy supplement is relaxation and self-care. But it’s also key to remember that your nutrition and health – before and during pregnancy – shapes the development of your child. Yes, even before you conceive, you can improve baby’s chances of optimum growth. And the most critical development in baby’s time in the womb occurs during the first three months of pregnancy, when many women don’t even know they’re pregnant just yet.

Pregnancy can be nutritionally taxing on your body. Iron deficiency, for example, is quite common. When you’re pregnant, your body needs more blood, and more iron to supply oxygen to your baby. This can lead to iron deficiency anaemia in varying degrees, which can have an effect on baby’s birth weight and even lead to premature birth in more extreme cases. Symptoms of iron deficiency include fatigue, pale skin, headaches and general weakness. Try giving yourself a boost with iron-rich foods like lean red meat, egg yolks, liver, canned sardines in oil and supplements containing iron.

Iron requirements are significantly higher during pregnancy: the DRI (Dietary Reference Intake) is 27 mg/day for pregnant women of all ages compared to 15 to 18 mg/day for non-pregnant women. Women often take in less iron than the current recommendations.¹

What is folic acid and why is it important?

Folic acid is also an often-forgotten but vital vitamin that pregnant women should be paying close attention to. Folic acid is a B vitamin that helps the body to create new cells. During pregnancy, folic acid aids in the development of normal tissue growth of the foetus, decreasing the risk of brain and spinal cord defects when they are born.²

According to the  World Health Organisation (WHO)  400 µg (0.4 mg) folic acid is recommended for pregnant women to prevent maternal anaemia, puerperal sepsis, low birth weight and preterm birth”.³. Good food sources of folic acid are liver, dark green leafy vegetables, beans, wheat germ and yeast. Other sources are egg yolk, milk and dairy products, beets, orange juice and whole wheat bread.  Usually the food intake alone won’t supply enough folic acid during pregnancy and a folic acid supplement is recommended by your healthcare provider. You can take folic acid tablets on their own, or you can use an all-in-one pregnancy supplement that has folic acid and other added vitamins and minerals, which is generally a lot more convenient, and preferable.

 Multiple Micronutrient Supplements vs Iron and Folic Acid

Multiple Micronutrient Supplements (MMS) vs Iron and Folic Acid (IFA) both decrease the risk of iron-deficiency anaemia during pregnancy. But MMS has the added benefit of supplying additional vitamins and minerals that can help mom’s general health and baby’s growth, as well as birth outcomes during pregnancy. Take a look at our Pregnancy Guide for more details on MMS vs IFA for maternal health and birth outcomes. If you are interested in more information on Improving Maternal Nutrition: making the case for MMS visit https://pages.devex.com/improving-prenatal-nutrition.html#NULL

Prenourish ( is there such a word? ) and be kind to yourself

Iron and essential vitamins and minerals are extremely important to consider as you care and nurture your baby’s growth before and during that unforgettable nine-month period. Optimal foetal development is assured by what you put in for you and for baby.

So, look after yourself – and baby – during your pregnancy with good food, a healthy lifestyle and essential pregnancy vitamins and minerals that take some of the worry out of your daily routine.

pregnancy pack vitamins The Mi-Vitamin® 2-IN-1 Pregnancy Pack includes a comprehensive MMS supplement with 13 essential vitamins and five added minerals including iron; and Mi-Vitamin® Omega-3,contains MEG-3Ò fish oil providing 1000 mg essential fatty acids including EPA + DHA. So, you can get your prenatal and pregnancy vitamins all at once.

Find out more or order yours online here.

 

References:

  1. https://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/life-stages/pregnancy-lactation
  2. https://www.nutri-facts.org/content/dam/nutrifacts/pdf/Nutrients-pdf/Vitamin_B9.pdf
  3. https://bit.ly/WHO_daily_iron_pregnancy