Do I need supplements during pregnancy, or How to grow talent in 9 months24.05.2022
One fine day you will find out that you are expecting a baby … It does not matter what kind of pregnancy it is. The tiny life that has arisen inside makes you change priorities and ask yourself: “Have I done (do) everything so that my future baby develops correctly?” .
I so want the child to be born the healthiest and smartest! And someone else secretly cherishes the dream of becoming the parent of the future Lomonosov, Einstein, Mozart or Kasparov … Of course, it is impossible to plan this in advance, but it is necessary to try to do everything so that the inherent potentials and talents are revealed!
“It’s too late after birth”
There are many good manuals and methods for the intellectual development of children that can be applied from an early age. Experienced teachers are convinced that one should start literally from the first days of life. The famous book by Masaru Ibuka “After three it’s too late” is a vivid confirmation of this. But in fact, you need to start from the first days of pregnancy!
Listening to classical music, studying the theory of relativity, or traveling all your pregnancy to conferences and symposiums – all this, of course, you can do. But there are other ways to take care of your child’s future intelligence.
It is known that the action of a number of vitamins and biologically active food supplements is aimed at the development of the brain. And this action is relevant precisely at the stage of intrauterine development of the baby. Deficiency of certain substances, such as folate and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), often leads to pathologies of the brain, nervous system and vision.
Indeed, the future success of your son or daughter directly depends on how well the development of the brain during pregnancy is ensured. This is facilitated by a healthy lifestyle, a balanced diet, as well as the intake of certain vitamin and mineral complexes and biologically active food supplements.
The latter causes, as a rule, a large number of questions from expectant mothers.
There is no consensus about taking vitamins and dietary supplements during pregnancy.
Some believe that a balanced diet in itself is able to provide the body with everything it needs . There is a point of view that all kinds of dietary supplements are not only useless, but also harmful to the body. It must be admitted that such a negative perception of nutritional supplements in our country is associated, first of all, with fraudulent schemes for the promotion of certain drugs. Indeed, high-quality dietary supplements are useful food supplements that make up for the missing and irreplaceable components in the diet. This is especially true during pregnancy. Hence – a different opinion that a future mother cannot do without additional support for drugs.
There is truth in both positions.
Indeed, if you eat properly and in a balanced way, then the body will receive most of the vitamins and minerals. In addition, an overdose of certain vitamins and trace elements is dangerous (for example, vitamin A). But there are a number of circumstances that cannot be ignored:
- “Manually” balancing the diet is quite difficult. You need to be a qualified nutritionist, understand all the norms and dosages in order to make a really correct menu.
- In the spring and winter in our region, the products contain few vitamins, so relying only on food for expectant mothers at this time of the year is not entirely reasonable. In addition, many fruits and vegetables that we find on store shelves are stored for such a long time that all the vitamins and minerals they should contain naturally break down. You can, of course, eat two or even three apples instead of one – in order to deliver the right amount of nutrients to the body. But how convenient, realistic and rational is it?
- There are substances that are found in small quantities in a very limited number of foods. Therefore, the body may experience their deficiency. When carrying a child, this can negatively affect the development of the fetus.
- And there are also substances that are not produced in the body (for example, folic and docosahexaenoic acids), and therefore their “delivery” from the outside is required – from food or synthetically created drugs.
As you can see, taking vitamin complexes and dietary supplements (of course, under the supervision of a doctor!) During pregnancy really makes sense. And if you want to give birth to a genius (!), you need to clearly understand what kind of useful substances are required at a certain stage of pregnancy in general and, in particular, the prenatal development of the brain.
1st trimester: 1-12 weeks
In the first trimester of pregnancy, the laying of the main vital organs and body systems takes place. In particular, from the 4th to the 8th week , the central and peripheral nervous systems, as well as the cerebral cortex, form from the outer germ layer. On the 5th week , a “matrix” is laid for the main structures of the brain. On the 6-7th week , the right and left hemispheres are formed, the red core of the midbrain matures, which affects muscle tone and is responsible for the coordination of movements.
For the formation of the embryo and its proper development in the 1st trimester, first of all, it is necessary:
- folic acid : prevents the development of defects in the neural tube and the fetal brain;
- vitamin A: responsible for the development of the nervous system, visual apparatus and skeleton of the baby;
- vitamin E: affects the proper development of the fetus and the formation of the placenta;
- iodine : important for the formation of the nervous system, the thyroid gland ( with caution and only as directed by a doctor – in case of thyroid diseases! );
- docosahexaenoic acid: necessary for laying the “building material” for the so-called myelin sheaths of neurons, which are 70-75% fatty acids, mainly DHA.
2nd trimester: 13-27 weeks
If at the beginning of the second trimester the growth of the fetus is approximately 10 cm, the weight is 30 g, then by the end of the 27th week the child can weigh about 1.2 kg with a height of 35 cm!
The skeleton is fully formed, the muscular system and the brain are developing. So, from the 16th week , the spatial organization of the brain begins to form. Furrows and convolutions are formed, the cortex acquires a six-layer structure, characteristic of the brain of an adult. By the fifth month of pregnancy, the fetal brain is already functioning as an integral system, and at the 20–22nd week, spontaneous brain activity can already be recorded using appropriate equipment. By the end of the sixth month , all the neurons of the brain are formed, the eyes become sensitive to light, and a reaction to sound appears.
For the proper development of the baby in the 1st trimester, the following vitamins and minerals are needed:
- iron: prevents anemia, excludes miscarriage (daily rate – 60 mg);
- iodine: participates in the formation of the skeleton of the unborn baby and ensures normal mental development (daily rate – 250 mg);
- calcium: responsible for the formation of the endocrine system, kidneys and skeleton of the fetus (daily rate – 1500 mg);
- vitamin D: helps calcium form the baby’s skeleton;
- vitamin C: helps calcium absorption;
- magnesium: contributes to the formation of the nervous system of the baby;
- docosahexaenoic acid: provides the transmission of electrical impulses between nerve cells; responsible for the full functioning of the nervous system, brain and vision; prevents intrauterine growth retardation.
3rd trimester: 28-40 weeks
The formation of the fetus is completed, the pregnancy is approaching the “finish line”.
The child’s brain increases significantly, the associative systems of the brain develop, new cortical zones appear. It is believed that it is in the 3rd trimester that the individual characteristics of the nervous system, the mental characteristics of the child are formed and the foundation is laid for his future mental abilities.
The following vitamins and microelements will help reduce the risk of preterm birth and prepare the body of the future baby for the “going out into the world”:
- vitamin E: prepares the baby’s lungs for extrauterine life, and also prevents premature birth (15 mg);
- vitamin C: at this stage, it is involved in the formation of the baby’s circulatory system (100 mg per day);
- calcium: responsible for the formation of the baby’s skeletal system (1500 mg per day);
- vitamin D: lays the foundation for the health of future teeth of the baby (up to 40 mg per day);
- iron: stimulates the creation of new blood cells in the baby’s body (60 mg per day);
- vitamin A: completes the formation of the skeletal system, mucous membranes, skin, retina (250 mg).
- docosahexaenoic acid: in large quantities it is necessary in the 3rd trimester for the active development of the nervous system, brain and vision; It is at this stage of pregnancy that DHA is deposited in the brain tissues, thereby determining the successful mental, psychomotor development of children, as well as the formation of the organs of vision during the first year of life.
Give birth to a genius?
Of course, we cannot decide for Mother Nature, but we can definitely help her. We have already found out that the development of the brain in the fetus begins from the 4th week and continues until the moment of birth. If in the first trimester this process is supported with the help of folic acid, then for all 9 months it is “managed” by docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) – the main representative of Omega-3 , a complex of polyunsaturated fatty acids, a unique source of vitality for the whole organism
It cannot be synthesized in the body of the fetus and child, and in the body of an adult it is contained in extremely small quantities, therefore it must be ingested with food or in the form of special supplements, or dietary supplements, which the doctor will help you choose.
So, a balanced diet, taking individual vitamin preparations (after consulting a doctor) – that’s what is required for a “smart pregnancy”, which, for sure, will end in the birth of … a new great talent !
Photo: Tinystep, Greatist, The Conversation, My Baby’s Heartbeat Bear, o.canada.com