I like to keep everything in my life simple, including what supplements I take. Aside from a multivitamin and an essential fatty acid (which almost everyone should take), there are a few more nutrients that are critical, especially for women. Many of these can be achieved through a healthy diet, but sometimes even that is not enough.
Here are some supplements that you might consider.
Iron deficiency can be very common in women of childbearing age, leading to fatigue. A simple supplemental iron can help to boost energy levels in women with low iron levels. You can ask your health care practitioner if you’d like to get your iron tested. If you decide to take supplemental iron, check for one that has vitamin C to help boost absorption. Continue reading “4 Supplements for Women’s Health”
Thinking of becoming pregnant? Well, don’t wait until the two pink lines show up on your home pregnancy test to start preparing. It’s important for a woman to start taking a good quality prenatal that contains 800 mg of folic acid as well as iron, calcium and vitamin D3, as soon as she starts trying to conceive (and ideally 3 months before conceiving).
Prenatal vitamins are specially formulated vitamins that help support a woman’s body during pregnancy. The most important reason in the past to take a prenatal was for the increased amount of folic acid. Folic acid combined with a B group vitamin, not only before pregnancy, but during, significantly reduces the possibility of neural tube defects such as spina bifida. This condition can develop in an embryo very early in pregnancy, perhaps even before a woman knows she is carrying a fetus.
However, a recent study has given even more importance to prenatal vitamins. Continue reading “Prenatal Vitamins Linked to Decreased Autism”
Folic acid is a B vitamin that can help reduce the risk of neural tube defects by as much as 70% if taken before conception. Folate and folic acid are different terms for the same B vitamin. Folate is found naturally in foods and folic acid is the synthetic form of the vitamin found in multivitamins and supplements.
So why is folic acid important?
Here are 10 facts from New York State’s Department of Health:
1. Each year, about 130 babies who are born in New York State have neural tube defects (NTD). Nationwide, there are 4,000 NTD-affected pregnancies each year. NTDs are disorders of the development of the brain and spinal cord. The most common NTD is spina bifida, or opening of the spine. The most serious NTD is anencephaly, failure of the brain to develop.
2. Up to 70% of NTDs can be prevented if all women who can become pregnant consume 0.4 mg/day of folic acid at least a month prior to conception and during the first trimester of pregnancy. Continue reading “10 Facts About Folic Acid”