I’ve completed my first trimester! Can a folic acid supplement still be helpful?
You’ve shared the good news with your family and friends, started to think about a name for your baby and even gone shopping for the cute clothes you always dreamt of. But best of all, you’ve completed your first trimester! Only 6 months left now until baby joins the family. Pregnancy brings about changes in your habits: your diet, increasing the amount of rest you need and, of course, your wardrobe at some point too! But being pregnant also induces a big physical and emotional change; your organism is adapting in order to give your baby everything it needs. Did you know? Your blood volume increases to be sure that your baby receives enough blood, your lower spines evolves to be more flexible and supportive to increase comfort and mobility during pregnancy and your level of hormones such as progesterone and estrogen, is also changing. By now you’re already aware of the importance of taking folic acid during the first trimester to support the healthy development of your baby.* But did you know that even after the first few months and until the end of breastfeeding, taking pregnancy vitamins such as those contained in Femibion can still be helpful ?
How can I give the best to my baby?
Naturally your primary concern is to provide the best possible environment for your future child both in the womb, and once they are born.
A recent study suggests that just 25% of a baby’s health over its lifetime is pre-determined purely by genetics; up to 75% can be influenced by the interaction of the genes with the mother’s lifestyle choices, including nutrition, weight of mother and baby, avoidance of stress or smoking.
Nutrition can play an important part in this and following a varied and balanced diet throughout pregnancy and breastfeeding is of particular importance. During the second and third trimester and even during breastfeeding, it can still be helpful to take, as a complement to a healthy diet, a supplement like Femibion2 as it contains amongst other important nutrients folic acid & the Omega 3 fatty acid DHA, for which dietary requirements are increased throughout pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Both of these can still play an important role, as maternal intake of DHA contributes to the normal development of the eyes and brain of the baby, initially via the umbilical cord and later via breastfeeding**, whilst folate contributes to cell division, thus tissue growth, as well as blood formation and placental growth. The placenta supplies the unborn baby with all nutrients.
Therefore we recommend that you continue taking a pregnancy vitamin supplement like Femibion alongside a varied and balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle all the way through to the end of breastfeeding.
* Supplemental folic acid intake increases maternal folate status. Low maternal folate status is one of the risk factors in the development of neural tube defects in the developing foetus. Therefore it is recommended that women take 400 μg supplemental folic acid daily for at least 1 month before and up to 3 months after conception. There are further risk factors for neural tube defects, therefore altering one of the factors might not in each case have a beneficial effect.
** Maternal intake of DHA contributes to the normal development of the brain and the eyes of the foetus and the breastfed infant. The beneficial effect is obtained with a daily intake of 200mg of DHA in addition to the recommended daily intake for adults of 250mg of omega-3 fatty acids (DHA and EPA)