Saturday, 2 February 2008

Taking a vitamin supplement can significantly reduce your chances of having a premature baby

More evidence has come to light regarding the importance of ensuring your diet has sufficient foods containing B vitamins before and during your pregnancy says UrBod Nutritionist Melody Mackeown, who specialises in pre-conceptual care, fertility and pregnancy.

Research has shown that if you consume sufficient folic acid for a year before becoming pregnant it can cut your risk of having a premature baby. This is important as being born too early is the most common reason for mortality in babies. UrBod Nutritionist Melody Mackeown always recommends a supplement containing 400mcg (micrograms) of folic acid daily and health care professionals have long recommended it to mums because it can reduce the risk of birth defects.

As many women do not know they are pregnant for some weeks it is essential that folic acid is taken all the time and especially if you know that you are trying to have a baby.

Folic acid is in most pre-natal and multi-vitamins. It can also be found in foods like fortified cereal, leafy green vegetables and orange juice. While folic acid is widely accepted by health experts worldwide, says UrBod Nutritionist Melody Mackeown, there are a number of other nutrients that would hugely benefit both mums and babies, especially where there is a risk of allergies (such as eczema, asthma and hayfever) in families. Furthermore, nutrients like folic acid work better if taken with other members of the B vitamin family.

Consequently, seeking pre-conceptual care advice may help considerably to avoid having a premature baby, says UrBod Nutritionist Melody Mackeown.