The importance of consuming Folic Acid during pregnancy

What is Folic Acid?

Folate and folic acid are forms of a water-soluble B vitamin. Folate occurs naturally in food, and folic acid is the synthetic form of this vitamin.

Where is it found?

Foods that are naturally high in folate include leafy vegetables (such as spinach, broccoli, and lettuce), okra, asparagus, fruits (such as bananas, melons, and lemons) beans, yeast, mushrooms, meat (such as beef liver and kidney), orange juice, and tomato juice.

Image result for folic acid vegetables and fruits

 Benefits of Folic Acid

Folic acid is used for preventing and treating low blood levels of folate (folate deficiency), as well as its complications, including “tired blood” (anemia) and the inability of the bowel to absorb nutrients properly. Folic acid is also used for other conditions commonly associated with folate deficiency, including ulcerative colitis, liver disease, alcoholism, and kidney dialysis.

Folic acid is used for memory loss, Alzheimer’s disease, age-related hearing loss, preventing the eye disease age-related macular degeneration (AMD), reducing signs of aging, weak bones (osteoporosis), jumpy legs (restless leg syndrome), sleep problems, depression, nerve pain, muscle pain, AIDS, a skin disease called vitiligo, and an inherited disease called Fragile-X syndrome. It is also used for reducing harmful side effects of treatment with the medications lometrexol and methotrexate. Some doctors recommend to apply folic aciddirectly to the gum for treating gum infections.

Importance of Folic Acid before and during pregnancy

If you’re pregnant or might become pregnant, it’s critically important to get enough folic acid, the synthetic form of vitamin B9, also known as folate. Women who are pregnant or might become pregnant must take folic acid to prevent miscarriage and “neural tube defects,” birth defects such as spina bifida that occur when the fetus’s spine and back do not close during development.

Image result for folic acid pregnancy

 How much folic acid you need?

To reduce your baby’s risk of developing a neural tube defect, experts recommend that you take 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid a day, beginning at least a month before you start trying to get pregnant. Don’t take more than 1,000 mcg per day of folic acid unless your healthcare provider advises you to. This is particularly important if you are a vegetarian. Vegans are at risk of being deficient in vitamin B12 and taking too much folic acid would make it hard to diagnose that deficiency.

Is the supplement recommended?

Yes. Many authorities, including FOGSI, ACOG and the March of Dimes, recommend that all women of childbearing age take a multivitamin with folic acid or a folic acid supplement every single day

Signs of a folic acid deficiency

The signs of folic acid deficiency can be subtle. You may have diarrhea, anemia, loss of appetite, and weight loss, as well as weakness, a sore tongue, headaches, heart palpitations, and irritability.

If you’re only mildly deficient, you may not notice any symptoms at all, but you won’t be getting the optimal amount for your baby’s early embryonic development.

 References

http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-1017-folic%20acid.aspx?activeingredientid=1017&

https://www.drugs.com/folic_acid.html

Tips of instating healthy habits in your child

Nutrition is important for your child. It depends on what your child eats and drinks.  It is important as parents to encourage children to eat a nourishing, balanced diet right from early years of their life. Your child needs to consume the right balance of carbohydrates, proteins, fats and vitamins. Educating them on healthy eating early in life will help maintaining good health and immunity for the long run.

The food Pyramid

They key to healthy eating is to enjoy all variety in the right numbers. Here is a display of food divided into 5 categories to help explain what should be eaten when.  The five food groups are:

1111111

@more4momz.com

Here is a bifurcation of the pyramid:

The bottom of the pyramid is the biggest part of the pyramid. It contains the foods you should eat in bulk:

  • Grain foods: always choose wholegrain and/or high fiber varieties of bread, cereals, rice, pasta, noodles.
  • Fruits and vegetables: They should make up a large part of your daily food intake. Ensure to encourage their consumption during every meal.

The middle of the pyramid contains foods you should eat some, but not too much:

  • Dairy: the foods in this group are excellent sources of calcium, which is important for strong, healthy bones.

The top of the pyramid is the smallest part of the pyramid. It contains foods you can eat once in a while:

  • Pulses: Helps to build proteins, maintain, and repair the tissues in our body.
  • Sugar Contains: Should be taken the least as they contain a large amount of fats.

Now that we have bifurcated the food into different groups, to encourage your children to eat this you should always have incentives:

The food chart

All children love to be encouraged, so when they follow your diet chart you can always appreciate them with a star and grade them. This way they will want to be good kids and will want to follow eating healthy!

22222

@ww.printablee.com

 

Tips for healthy eating:

  1. Make school lunch interesting for the children:

Most of the time children spend is in school. Packing the perfect lunch box for your child could be a challenge. It is easy to run out of ideas and more importantly to give them something new which is tasty and healthy. Here are a few healthy Lunch Box Recipes:

  • Oats Idlis
  • Upma
  • Bread Poha
  • Paneer and Salsa Tortillas
  • Multigrain Pizza
  • Moong Dal Chila

Click on the link to get the recipes here – http://food.ndtv.com/lists/10-best-kids-lunch-box-recipes-1434784

  1. Breakfast is the most important meal:

Breakfast is the best way to refuel your body. It keeps your kids healthy and active during the day. Skipping breakfast makes your child tired and restless. Breakfast also can help keep kids’ weight in check. Breakfast kick-starts the body’s metabolism too.  Here is a video which will help you understand the importance of it. – https://vimeo.com/122534561

  1. Involve your kids while cooking food:

If you involve your children into cooking or even let them help in preparing the meal with you then it will make them happier and also they will love to eat to eat the food they prepare. They will land up eat vegetables they refused to taste in the first place – https://vimeo.com/122534563

 

Mommies, we hope this helps you maintain a balanced but yet healthy diet for your children. Eat healthy, stay healthy!

How to engage your little one with in-house activities during the monsoons!

After the scorching summers, the rains are a much-needed relief. Monsoons are fun! The refreshing smell in the air with the cool breeze, frogs croaking in the garden and butterflies are dancing in the lawn. While this is certainly something to cheer about, there is one problem! Babies and toddlers have to stay indoors. They can’t step out to play their usual evening games with their friends as parents are scared that they will catch infection during this time.

But let’s admit it. This season brings out the child inside anyone! Making paper boats and having competitions, warm cups of a chocolate milkshake or buying new colorful raincoats.

So make this season fun for your child as well. Here are different ways you can make your child’s most boring season, into something more joyful!

21] Art and craft:

Unleash your child’s creativity this monsoon. Let them explore their creative side. Get them innovative stationery like textured paper, colour pencils, crayons, etc. Teach them how to make items out of waste and old papers. It is also fun to try your hands on something imaginative. They will feel happy and encouraged. http://blog.babycell.in/?p=401

6

 

2] Movie Time:

It’s also fun to watch some animated movies with some homemade popcorn and other snacks. Then why not enjoy the same with your child. Stack up few DVDs and snuggle up with your young one on the couch while watching fun baby movies like Baby’s Day Out or Heyy Baby. It will keep them occupied for a good amount of time and they will enjoy it too.

4

 

3] Cook together:

Some of our little one’s always enjoy pretending like they are the world’s best chefs. So, make their role play a real thing for them! It could be a family activity which you plan to do together and also at the same time teaching the young one something new. Teach them easy recipes like sandwich, salad or biscuit snackers which do not involve cooking with fire!

5

4] Card or Board Games:

Rains are the best time to get the cards and the board games outside. Instead of the child playing games alone on the tablets or the computer, the whole family can join in and play together! You can teach them games you played as a kid with your friends and family.

6

 

5] Story Time:

One of the best feelings in this pleasant climate is to sip hot coffee and read a book. So why not let your kids enjoy the same feeling? Indulge in some storytelling for your young one. You can get them animated and pictorial books to make it more interesting and fun for the child.

7.png

 

6]  Water play at home:
Most parents don’t want to risk taking their child outside during the rains, but you can create the same environment for them inside the house, in a safer way. Set up an alternate water play at home. Collect some water in a tub or a bucket. They can make small paper boats and play inside the tub. This will keep them away from infection and make it enjoyable too!

8

 

Don’t let this season stop kids from having fun! Make it educational yet fun for them and something they will remember for a long time!

Monsoon Pregnancy Care Tips & Precautions

Monsoon is one of the most loved seasons in India. The thundering sky, heavy rains, making paper boats, and wearing raincoats, everything related to monsoon brings back happy memories. Monsoon is that time of the year when you should be more cautious about your health, especially if you are pregnant. While the monsoon gives relief from hot summer, allergies, other hazards are lurking around.

The gloomy weather not only sets the stage for mood swings (though for some it can be just the opposite) but also makes you susceptible to various infectious or communicable diseases with an already suppressed immune system.

1

Here are ways in which you can tackle the monsoons with ease :-

Increase your water intake:

Most people do not feel thirsty due to increase in humidity. During monsoons, you must keep yourself well hydrated and keep a count of your water intake. This will help you flush out toxins from the body. Drink purified or boiled water when you feel thirsty. Make it a habit to consciously drink at least 2 to 2.5 litres of water throughout the day.

2

Dressing for the season:

Humidity increases manifold during monsoons, this can cause excessive sweating. ‘So avoid wearing uncomfortable clothes, especially if you are in your last trimester. Make sure that you wear clothes that fit you well or are a bit loose around the tummy. Choose light cotton to go with the season,’ says Dr. Bandita Sinha, consultant gynecologist and obstetrician, SSD hospital, Mumbai.

3

 

Ensure optimal hygiene: 

To keep you cool and fresh bathe at least twice daily. Keep a wet tissue handy to wipe off sweat and grime. Wash your hands, ideally with warm water before you eat or touch your food. Use a hand sanitizer instead if you are outdoors or at work.

4

 

Sanitize Your Home :

Pest Control your house during the monsoon to free your home from disease spreading insects like flies, cockroaches, termites, and mosquitoes, etc. But, make sure you stay away during the process as the smoke with chemicals may affect your pregnancy in a negative way.Use a high quality disinfectant to clean your house and keep it germs free.

5

Pregnancy yoga:

While you are likely to stay indoors for most of the time, indulging in pregnancy yoga can be a good way to pass the time. Yoga during this time of the year can help you get through with minimal discomfort. It will also help child-birth and post-delivery stages. Read about yoga postures, exercise safety, and more – http://blog.babycell.in/?cat=17

6

Keeping the above pregnancy tips in mind will ensure happy monsoon and healthy pregnancy. All to-be mothers take utmost care of yourself and make the best effort secure the future of their upcoming baby.

 

 

Pregnancy Diet – Essential Nutrients – Folic Acid

Choosing a balanced diet during pregnancy is a must, it will help you meet your daily calorie requirements, keep a check on your intake and maintain a healthy body weight. During this phase, pregnant women should consume the right amount of protein, calcium, iron, vitamins, folic acid and more.

Take a look at some of the nutrients which deserve a star position in your pregnancy diet.

Folic Acid:

Is vital for the normal development of your baby’s brain, skull and spinal cord.

Proteins:

Proteins help pregnant mother’s produce amino acids that are the building blocks of the baby’s body.

Iron:

Iron is useful in the production of haemoglobin that helps to deliver oxygen and prevent premature delivery.

Calcium:

Calcium helps in the development of the baby’s brain.

Vitamin A:

Vitamin A helps in the creation of cells that will make up baby’s internal organs

Vitamin C:

Vitamin C helps in building a healthy immune system.

While every nutrient is important, there are a few that should be consumed on a larger scale. One of them is folic acid.

Why folic acid during pregnancy?

Folic acid is a B vitamin that helps a baby’s neural tube to develop properly which then becomes the brain and spinal cord. On the other hand, folic acid also helps prevent other birth defects, such as a cleft palate, etc. While folic acid plays a vital role, we have listed few myths and truths about this essential nutrient.

Folic acid is not the same as folate.

Myth 1:

Pregnant mothers who do not have a history of ‘spina bifida’ do not have to take folic acid.

Truth 1:

Most (95%) spina bifida cases happen in families without a history, so it is important to plan ahead and take folic acid regularly.

Myth 2:

Women, who are not planning to get pregnant anytime soon, do not need to consume folic acid.

Truth 2:

As half of all pregnancies are not planned, it is important to take folic acid every day.

Myth 3:

Foods that have folate, like orange juice also have folic acid. So, having a glass of orange juice will provide the required folic acid.

Truth 2:

Our bodies absorb a man-made form of folic acid found in vitamins easily. The best way to get the folic acid is by taking a vitamin with it.

Now that you know the myths and the truth associated with ‘Folic acid’, take a look at the top foods that serve as a rich source

1. Dark Leafy Greens 

If you are looking for an immediate boost in folic acid, make sure to include spinach, collard greens, kale, turnip greens and romaine lettuce into your daily diet.

 

12. Asparagus

Asparagus is rich in folic acid that makes it one of the best sources. Eating asparagus will provide you with Vitamin K, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Manganese and more.

23. Broccoli

This source of folate is also one of the best detox foods. One cup of broccoli will provide you with approximately 24% of your daily folic acid needs and other nutrients.

34. Citrus Fruits

Fruits that are rich in citrus, contain a high amount of folic acid. Consider eating papaya, grapefruit, banana, cantaloupe and strawberries in your diet.

4

How to include them in your diet?

There are a number of ways you could include folic acid in your diet. Some of the popular ways are listed below:

Juice: If you don’t prefer your greens boiled or cooked, put them in a juicer. You can consider having them with your breakfast. It is advised that you consume them fresh.

Salad: Salads too are a healthy and easy way to consume greens rich in folic acid. You can mix different sources of greens and enjoy.

Fortified cereals:

Most fortified cereals supply a whopping 100 to 400 mcg of folic acid in half cup to one and a half cup serving.

Mask it with your favourite dish:

While some of you might not like the taste of these greens, a good way to enjoy them is to add it to your favourite food dishes.

The best way to find out the right amount of folic acid that a women needs to consume varies from person to person. Hence, it is best to ask your experts who can help you with your diet.

So if you are pregnant or are about to conceive, make sure to include folic acid in your diet that can be vital for you and your baby.

 

 

 

Basics of Postnatal Care

Whether you’re expecting or have just delivered your bundle of joy, you need to take special care of yourself. Mothers face a lot of emotional and physical changes that last anywhere from six to eight months. It ranges from hormonal changes, emotional highs and lows, uterus contractions, post-partum depression, breast problems, vaginal discharge and more.

While most mothers are often lost when it comes to dealing with these issues, the article below will enlighten you with the basics of postnatal care. Here are some tips that you should keep in mind.

Postnatal Check-ups:

You endured the nine months of pain, survived labour and brought your beautiful baby into this world, make sure all that was not for nothing. Make it a mandate to do a postnatal check-up and ensure your wellbeing as well as that of your baby.

You can consider opting for a postnatal care package that guarantees to provide extensive personalized care. A good package will ensure the following:

  • Tracking your healing progress
  • Removing sutures if present
  • Checking your blood pressure
  • Breastfeeding support, education, and much more.

Diet and Exercise:

Every women wants to look her best and the same can be said for mothers after childbirth. What new mums should keep in mind, is that losing weight immediately after is a big no-no. It can affect the quality of breast milk supply and in turn affect your baby during their crucial stages of development. Have plenty of fluids and consume a balanced diet consisting of fruits, vegetables, grains and protein food is a must, to keep yourself healthy.

There are some substances like alcohol (wine, beer), caffeine (tea, coffee, and chocolate) that need to be completely avoided.

1

Post-partum depression:

Monday blues have a cure, it’s called any other day. Baby blues? Well, if you ever face anxiety, crying spells, mood swings and the likes for more than two weeks in more severe forms than normal, that’s post-partum depression. Consulting a doctor for assistance can do wonders, also you must spend quality time with your loved ones to overcome any stress or emotional imbalances.

2

 

Breastfeeding:

Mothers are a source of a child’s strength. That statement holds true especially considering that breastfeeding your newborn provides the essential nutrients and vital elements for its development. It goes without saying, proper hygiene during breastfeeding should be maintained.

In case you are facing over lactation and your baby is not consuming, you can store the milk. Use sterilised containers. Label and date your containers. Keep your breast pump clean and wash your hands before expressing and handling breast milk for storage.

3

 

Vaginal Care

There are always few complications after childbirth. If you happen to have a vaginal tear during delivery, you are likely to experience pain for a few weeks. Extensive tears might take longer to heal and scheduling a check-up with your doctor is highly advised. Besides that, it is advisable to abstain from sexual intercourse for four to six weeks after delivery, giving your vagina time to properly heal.

4

 

Urination problems:

The swelling or bruising of the tissues surrounding the bladder and urethra may lead to difficulty while urinating. With time, this difficulty usually resolves on its own. However, in the meantime, pouring water across your vulva while sitting on the toilet might help. Practicing Kegel exercises can help tighten your pelvic muscles.

In case you experience a strong, persistent urge to urinate, burning sensation when urinating or pass frequent but small amounts of urine, contact your doctor immediately.

The Takeaway:

Every mother should try to stay healthy before, during and after pregnancy. Staying on top of your healthcare appointments and following your doctor’s instructions ensures you and your baby are healthy, happy and safe.

A Girl Child Is A Boon!

Daughters are angels! They are delicate, tender, beautiful and most importantly they are innocent. Daughters are inspiring, motivating and a powerful support system! Check out how much fun it is to be a parent of a baby girl.

fgghf

Seven things that will excite you about having a baby girl –

1] You can go on a Shopping Spree!

If you have a daughter on your side, all you need to do is grab your wallet and go on a shopping spree! This little fashionista can be your best companion to experiment your fashion vogue.

2] Mommies get a lot of girlie stuff – earrings, accessories, scarfs and handbags and Daddies can get some amazing shopping tips and what to wear ideas.

Your daughter will know your sense of style well and she will be the one gifting you trendy stuff! You come to a stage in life eventually when your daughter will help you dress up for an occasion right from selecting outfits/accessories/ hairstyles, etc. and you won’t need to worry about keeping up with the latest trends!

trh

3] Who else to try your make- up and hairstyles tutorials with?

Mommies will never get bored or lonely when they have a daughter! Makeup is a fantastic and cost-effective way to add the WOW into any outfit and your little girl will love watching you get all decked up! You can also try those awesome Youtube hair tutorials on her and make her feel included in the fun of getting all dressed up.

trhts

4] Girls love to mimic!

As early as three years of age, girls excel at imitation, a precursor to back-and-forth interaction. Younger babies are best at copying finger moments, and they spend a lot of time observing and processing information before they attempt anything. You can capture videos with your baby girl and share these fun moments with her in future.

5] Enjoy activities you missed out on!

Left out some things on the checklist from your younger day? Now is the time to try out these activities with your daughter! Whether it be something adventurous like skydiving or something as simple as experimenting with make-up and hair, enjoy them with your daughter!

6] Set up a sweet Mother- Daughter or Father- Daughter Photo Shoot

We all know how crazy all ladies are about Selfies and photo shoots! Not just because we like to deck –up but because we love capturing moments that we can keep for a life time!

Father-Daughter relationship is very impactful. You can empower and motivate her to help achieve her goals. So go ahead and make some amazing memories with her!

dshserjryketykteyketyk7] Daughters grow- up into a friend

You get a best friend for life with whom you can share everything and anything! Your ups – downs or be it the much needed emotional support, they will always help to overcome all hurdles in your life :)

strh

Embrace and be proud of your baby girl! After all, a daughter your daughter really admires you. So go ahead express your love and spend amazing time with your little one!

Weird cravings during pregnancy

As a mom-to-be, you must have experienced the crazy pregnancy cravings! You are feeling emotional and some food/beverage items just feel right! But if you are having an extreme craving that does not seem right as it could mean there is some kind of nutritional deficiency. Here is a list of all food items that one usually craves and the science behind it.

  • Dirt, wall paint, ice

Picture5

If you are craving for non-food items like chalk, wall paint, dirt and detergent, you might be suffering from ‘pica’. This means you are a little anemic and need to include iron rich foods in your diet.

  • Chocolate

If you are craving for chocolate then it could mean your body has magnesium deficiency. If you are good at self-control, you could eat sweets in moderation, have just a square or two of dark chocolate at a time. But if you aren’t, you could probably snack on almonds instead.

Picture4

  • Pickles

It is very common for all pregnant ladies to crave for pickles at some point or the other. The craving for sour and tarty flavors might mean you want more variety in your daily diet. So go ahead and try out different things to see what makes you happy!

Picture6

  • Spicy Food

Yet another common craving among pregnant ladies is spicy food, especially hot curries and red peppers. One of the advantages of spicy foods is makes you sweat, which in turn makes your body to cool-off. You can try adding spices to your meal to combat your craving.

Picture2

  • Ice cream

If you are craving it for its creamy, sweet and icy feel then it might just be the weather. But if you are craving it too much, then your body might be in need of calcium. You can eat frozen yogurt instead and ensure there is enough calcium in your daily diet.

Picture3

  • Green leafy vegetables

This might be the weirdest craving! But some time you can end up craving for leafy veggies. You would want to eat a giant pile of lettuce, palak, methi, etc. But this is a good craving to have! These are packed with nutrients and are good for your body and your baby!

Picture1

All these crazy cravings are just a small part of the great journey that is pregnancy. Just remember to have a well-balanced diet and drink a lot of fluids between your meals.

A special message for all you fathers out there! Make her feel loved and never let the cravings take charge of her.

Healthy Diet for a Breastfeeding Mom

Being a mother is a beautiful experience, but it comes with a lot of responsibility- not only towards your child, but towards your own health.

Your baby’s health depends on your breast milk and its nutrients. However, every woman’s breast milk is composed differently to suit her child, hence it is important for every woman to pay special attention to her diet. Here are some tips you could use when you are pregnant.

Maintaining a well-balanced diet

Enough nutrition during pregnancy is necessary for your baby to grow and develop. Vomiting and nausea are pretty common during the first few months of pregnancy, and can make this difficult. Try to have a well-balanced diet and take prenatal vitamins to assist with this.

Lactating mothers feel hungrier, which makes sense since your body is working extra to produce milk for your baby. Consuming small meals along with healthy snacks in between is an excellent way to keep your hunger pangs at bay and your energy levels on the higher side.

hdd

 

Stop counting the number of calories!

Mothers who are Breastfeeding require 500 calories more than regular moms. That is 2,000 to 2,500 calories per day.

You should listen to your body and eat what it demands. That is usually all the calories your body actually needs. Counting calories does not help unless you are trying to watch your weight. Too much dieting can decrease the milk supply to the milk ducts. However, if you are well planned and diet sensibly, it should not pose any problems.

5454

 

Go for slow and steady weight loss

Many new moms discover that the weight they gain is very hard to lose; while others feel that it is easily lost. But the truth about weight loss remains that it depends largely on your body’s metabolism rate, how much physical activity you are getting in a day and the type of food you prefer to eat. Therefore one must always remember to lose the pregnancy weight very gradually. Ideally, take a year to get back to your pre-pregnancy self.

Never try to lose weight by dieting until at least two months after your baby is born. A reduced calorie intake in these first couple of months could leave you feeling a loss of energy and can possibly reduce/ diminish your milk supply.

But if you are way above your average/ideal weight, you could start shedding those extra pounds earlier. Remember to take your doctor’s advice before starting the weight loss process; and remember to drink plenty of water, to always stay hydrated!

54848

 

Avoid alcohol

In general alcohol should not be consumed while a mother is breastfeeding as it enters the milk and alters its composition. Having a small amount of alcohol will also affect your milk letdown reflex.

5675

Stay hydrated and cut down on your caffeine

16 cups of fluid is required by your body when you are breastfeeding and this includes the fluid from the food you consume. But there’s no need for you to keep track of the amount of water you consume a day. Your urine colour is also an indicator of how well hydrated your body is (light yellow or clear urine is a good sign).

It’s totally fine to have your morning cup of tea/ coffee but remember not to overdo it. Small traces of this caffeine will end up in your breast milk and your baby’s body is not fully equipped to break it down and expel it out.

4578

Pregnancy Nutrient Needs

Here’s a simple illustration of what your body needs during pregnancy.

Make the most of these ingredients in your diet for you to enjoy pregnancy with a power back up!
Here’s all the information on why to include these in your daily diet and how it will benefit your baby during pregnancy.
Share your comments if you find this information helpful! 

Pregnancy Nutrient Needs