Sunday, August 23, 2009

Common Factors Affecting Nutrition During Pregnancy

Common Factors Affecting Nutrition During Pregnancy
Many women will experience nausea and vomiting during pregnancy, especially during the first trimester.

The nausea can result from an accumulation of gastric acid in the stomach and can be alleviated by eating small amounts of food every 3 – 4 hours.

Some women also benefit from eating dry toast or crackers, especially it they are nausea when they first wake up in the morning.

It is also important to consider avoiding eating food and drinking fluids at the same time.

Toward the end of pregnancy, many women will experience a return of nausea which is often attributed to decreased gastric peristalsis.

Women need to have a good source of bulk in their diet and to maintain exercise at an appropriate level which also helps them to decrease constipation.

Food aversion, heartburn, weight gain, hemorrhoids, lactose intolerance, and vegetarianism have an impact on pregnant women and ultimately the outcome of the pregnancy.

During pregnancy, women need to eat a well balanced diet that has sufficient calories and represents a variety of food groups.

They need to be encouraged to maintain a healthy duet and sufficient exercise throughout pregnancy inappropriate weight gain can place the newborn at greater risk for infection, illness, disabilities and even death.

Some women experience pica (persistent eating of foods that have not nutrient value).

Pica behavior may lessen the nutritional level of the mother and her fetus since the mother may not eat nutritious foods in sufficient quantity, which can lead to poor weight gain, low birth eight and intrauterine growth retardation.

Also, the substance that the woman is eating may have harmful effects t the maternal fetal unit.

Women who drink 2-3 cups of coffee each day have a daily caffeine intake of about 300 mg. Caffeine decreases the absorption of iron, which has a direct effect on the maternal-fetal unit.

During pregnancy, caffeine decreases the blood flow through the placenta and also increases the risk of spontaneous abortion during the first trimester.

Caffeine consumption during pregnancy may lead to caffeine withdrawal symptoms in the newborn.

Aspartame (found in some artificial sweeteners) contains the amino acid phenylalanine and should be avoided by pregnant women because high levels of phenylalanine can lead to impaired fetal brain development and result in mental retardation.
Common Factors Affecting Nutrition During Pregnancy

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