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The right food supplements during pregnancy?
Date:1/18/2011

Nutrients, vitamins, minerals during pregnancy a woman's body needs more of them. For most nutrients this increase in demand can be covered with a balanced diet. However, mothers-to-be should ingest some nutrients in the form of tablets. Research conducted by the Chair of Nutritional Medicine at the Technische Universitaet Muenchen (TUM) indicates there are knowledge gaps: According to this study, pregnant women often start taking sensible dietary supplements too late or not at all. At the same time, other micronutrients are unwittingly overdosed whose effects during pregnancy have not yet been studied.

Pregnant women and nursing mothers often require more nutrients than other women. Current research indicates that a balanced diet is generally sufficient to ensure the healthy development of an unborn child. This is not the case for folic acid, iodine and iron: A deficit during pregnancy cannot be ruled out under current nutritional conditions in Germany. For this reason various professional associations recommend iodine and folic acid food supplements, and in the case of iron deficiency, the additional intake of low-dose, iron-based supplements. But do women looking to have children and those who are already pregnant really follow these recommendations? This is the main question that the Chair of Nutritional Medicine at the TUM tried to answer.

"In spite of existing recommendations, many pregnant women and their doctors are not well-informed about the sensible use of supplements," explains Professor Hans Hauner, expert on nutritional medicine at the TUM. In a survey conducted at three clinics in and around Munich, his team investigated and analyzed the intake of nutritional supplements before and during pregnancy. To this end, 522 women who had just given birth were given structured interviews in the first three days following delivery: Germans and foreigners with different levels of education, both first-time mothers and women who had been p
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Contact: Jana Bodicky
bodicky@zv.tum.de
49-816-171-5403
Technische Universitaet Muenchen
Source:Eurekalert

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