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Benefits From Iron Rich Foods for Pregnancy

The period of pregnancy becomes quivering and important for the expectant mother. A woman is responsible for her health and the health of her future baby. A pregnant woman should eat a balanced diet and add to the diet foods rich in important trace elements for fetal development for forty weeks.

These components include iron. It is a key substance for the synthesis of hemoglobin. The element plays a huge role in the processes that support the work of the immune system of the mother and child. A sufficient amount of iron can be obtained from plant foods, meat, and fish.

Mothers who consumed the norm substance during pregnancy provide the necessary supply of the element for the newborn. The baby has enough of this resource for up to six months. The use of an iron supplement should be discussed with a gynecologist if a woman cannot compose a complete menu.

The importance of iron during pregnancy

Iron is necessary for the human body to synthesize hemoglobin. It is a protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen throughout the body’s tissues. A woman’s blood volume increases during pregnancy. The need for iron also increases and the mother’s body must supply itself and the child with oxygen.

Iron is part of the cytochrome enzymes. They take part in the cleansing processes of the body. Cytochromes neutralize dangerous compounds that appear in the process of human life. Iron is extremely important for maintaining the functioning of the endocrine system (thyroid gland), DNA synthesis, and the process of cell division.

Iron plays an important role in the development of a child’s brain. It is especially important to receive the daily norm of the substance in the third trimester of pregnancy. The body of the child makes a supply of the element, which lasts from four to six months of life. Your baby’s body will absorb iron on its own once solid foods have been introduced.

Iron rich foods for pregnancy?

Iron is found in a wide range of available foods. Most of the substances can be found in animal products. This type of iron is called heme. It is absorbed better than the element found in vegetables and fruits.

It is worth adding red meat, poultry, and fish liver to the diet to get the daily intake of the substance. The iron contained in meat covers 55-60% of the required amount of the element per day. Heme iron is absorbed in the intestine faster than vegetable iron.

High concentration of iron in oysters, nuts, whole grain cereals, whole grain bread, and dried fruits. Spinach is a source of iron. A serving of this healthy product provides 25% of the required iron from the daily requirement. Pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, sea kale, and greens are rich in substance.

Iron in Common Foods per 1 LB:

Beef Liver102 g
Oysters69 g
Pumpkin Seeds64 g
Shellfish28 g
Pine Nuts22 g
Black Chocolate20 g
Red Meat17 g
Lentils16 g
Spinach12 g

The daily rate of iron in the body

The daily intake of iron depends on the age and gender of the person. An adult woman needs up to 18 mg of iron per day. The expectant mother’s blood volume increases during pregnancy. The woman’s body also provides nutrients to the fetus.

This means that the expectant mother should receive more than the usual daily intake of iron. Doctors recommend doubling the dose of substance intake. A pregnant woman should receive 27-30 mg of iron per day. It is worth increasing your iron intake starting from the second trimester of pregnancy.

Half of the iron is consumed by the body for the development of the placenta and fetus. The other half is used to increase blood in the mother’s circulatory system. Mothers who are breastfeeding should eat a diet high in iron to prevent iron deficiency in their babies.

What does the lack of iron in the body lead to?

The level of hemoglobin in the blood of a woman decreases if she receives an insufficient amount of iron from food. A decrease in hemoglobin causes tissue hypoxia: there is an insufficient supply of oxygen to cells. This condition threatens the formation of fetal hypoxia. Prolonged oxygen starvation adversely affects the development of the child.

Anemia during pregnancy is a dangerous condition that carries many risks for the fetus and mother. The biggest threat is abortion (when delivery occurs before 37 completed weeks of pregnancy). Iron deficiency anemia during pregnancy is also associated with low birth weight and maternal postpartum depression.

Iron deficiency in pregnant women can provoke preeclampsia. This is a complication of the course of pregnancy, which manifests itself after the twentieth week of pregnancy. The main symptoms of preeclampsia include increased blood pressure, swelling of the body, and the detection of protein in the woman’s urine.

Symptoms of iron deficiency in the body

The human body does not produce iron but can store some of the substance. An element deficiency is formed if the body does not receive the norm of iron with food and depletes its reserves. The main symptoms of iron deficiency include fatigue, decreased concentration, tinnitus, and rapid heartbeat.

Noticeable changes in emotional and physical condition. The condition of hair and nails worsens with iron deficiency. Women often experience increased hair loss and fragility of the nail plate. Perhaps the formation of stomatitis: ulcers in the oral cavity and around it. The skin becomes dull, and flaky on the feet, and bruises form under the eyes.

Symptoms of iron deficiency in the body include a tendency to freeze. It is worth consulting a doctor if a woman notices such signs. Iron deficiency can be confirmed with a blood test.

How to increase iron absorption

The saturation of the body with iron is affected not only by the amount of the consumed element but also by its combination with other vitamins and minerals. It is important to add vitamin C to the diet for people who eat a predominantly plant-based diet. The acidic environment of vitamin C accelerates the absorption of iron.

Foods rich in vitamins A and B should be added to the diet so that iron is better absorbed by tissues. Some components contained in food interfere with the absorption of iron. Legumes contain phytic acid, which blocks the absorption of iron (if consumed regularly).

It is worth limiting the use of tea and coffee due to the content of tannins (they neutralize iron) so that the body receives the maximum amount of iron. It is better to replace drinks with plain water or fruit teas. Impairs the absorption of iron by calcium found in foods and supplements.

Should I take iron supplements?

It is extremely important to consume the norm of vitamins, trace elements, and minerals in sufficient quantities during pregnancy. You can get iron through a balanced diet. Not all pregnant women consume the required amount of the substance due to various reasons (toxicosis, diet, diseases of the gastrointestinal tract).

Iron deficiency threatens premature birth and impaired fetal development. Deficiency is easy to replenish with the help of synthetic additives. Gynecologists recommend taking pills from the fourth month of pregnancy to the sixth week after childbirth (an individual iron intake schedule can be set depending on the degree of anemia).

You cannot prescribe iron intake on your own. It is imperative to follow the doctor’s advice. Some prenatal vitamins contain iron. It is important to adhere to the norm of taking the substance. Gynecologists often prescribe blood tests for pregnant women. The type of additive and its dosage is selected based on the data.

Is it possible to overdose on iron supplements?

Iron overdose cannot be achieved with a balanced diet. The body takes the required amount of the substance from food and removes the rest naturally. Uncontrolled intake of a synthetic supplement can provoke an overdose and iron poisoning.

Iron overdose is just as dangerous for mother and child as iron deficiency. Too much iron can cause preterm labor. Symptoms of an iron overdose include systematic constipation, abdominal pain, vomiting (in particular with blood), and increased blood pressure.

Seek medical attention immediately if a pregnant woman experiences symptoms of iron poisoning or if taking a supplement causes her discomfort. It is necessary to systematically take tests and follow the recommendations of the gynecologist to receive the norm of the necessary components during pregnancy.

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