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Supplement Advice for Mom and Baby from Nordic Naturals

{Disclaimer: We are working with Nordic Naturals to bring you this information.}

I love being a mom! But it’s a tough job. We literally grow a fully formed human from a single cell. This is miraculous, wondrous, and delicate, all at once. That first cell, and every cell it becomes, will function best when it’s healthy.

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Photo courtesy of Nordic Naturals

Cells have nutritional requirements, just like we do. That’s why making the right prenatal and postnatal choices supports not only a healthy pregnancy, but also a healthy baby in the months and years following birth. So where do we start? Well, some of the most important nutrients during and after pregnancy are omega-3s EPA and DHA.

Research has shown that omega-3s support healthy eyes, brain, birth weight, gestational length and more. Omega-3s are even shown to promote a positive mood for moms and focused attention in infants and children. It’s such a crucial nutrient that the American Pregnancy Association, a national health organization dedicated to reproductive wellness, says that omega-3 fatty acids are, “…essential for both neurological and early visual development of the baby.” Did you know they recommend that pregnant or lactating women get 300 mg of omega-3 DHA a day? It’s that important.

So how do we get these essential nutrients? Fatty, cold water fish are ideal sources of omega-3s. But aren’t we supposed to limit our fish intake because of mercury? Flax and chia seeds provide a form of omega-3s called ALA (alpha-linolenic acid), but this short-chain fatty acid must be converted to long-chain EPA and DHA, and unfortunately, that conversion is inefficient at best. So what do we do?

Fish oil can be a reliable and safe source of omega-3 fatty acids during pregnancy, but not all fish oil is created equal. There are some key things to look for when choosing a high-quality fish oil supplement.  First, make sure it doesn’t have a fishy taste or smell. Oil that is fresh will smell and taste fresh. Also, ask for third-party testing that shows purity and freshness levels. This is the best way to be sure that your oil is safe. Then, choose a product trusted by experts in prenatal and postnatal health. Nordic Naturals offers four products formulated for prenatal and postnatal stages, and they’re all officially recognized by the American Pregnancy Association.

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Prenatal DHA
provides 450 mg of DHA—a building block of the brain—and 400 I.U. of vitamin D3 to support mood and immunity throughout pregnancy.*

Pregnancy is associated with high omega-3 requirements. During gestation, the baby relies on the mother to provide these essential nutrients. Omega-3 fatty acids are deemed essential nutrients because our bodies cannot manufacture them efficiently and because they play a unique role that no other fats can fulfill. During pregnancy, the mother will donate her omega-3 stores to support fetal development. As the mother donates these fat stores she becomes increasingly deficient in omega-3. This deficiency can continue postpartum and impact the nutrition within breast milk. Research shows that optimal omega-3 status can support a healthy pregnancy and postpartum mood.

BVTMB Review: I have tried other supplements of this type and was not looking forward to what they would taste like but I was pleasantly surprised by the lovely strawberry flavor!” -Tasha

Postnatal Omega-3 provides ample DHA but also includes 586 mg of EPA, and 1000 I.U. of vitamin D3, to support maternal mood and general health.*

During brain development, billions of brain cells called neurons produce electrical signals and chemical reactions that allow cells to communicate with each other and as the fetal brain develops the demand for DHA increases. DHA plays a critical role in the development of the nervous system and retina. Housed within the cell membrane, DHA contributes to the stability of the cellular membrane environment while simultaneously facilitating the high level of liquidity that all brain cells require for rapid function.

Neurons connect to each other to pass along information. They make thousands of connections, which is what helps make each of us unique. Children all have their own individual set of connections based upon the way their brains develop as well as their life experiences. Our brain controls the entire body and each time a child experiences something new she creates a new connection in her brain. During the last trimester and the first two years of life a child experience the most rapid brain growth a human will ever undergo. It’s imperative that the child’s foundational nutritional requirements are met; indeed when it comes to cognition, omega-3 status is pivotal.

BVTMB Review: “The Omegas didn’t leave a bad aftertaste or cause fishy burps- which was great. My brain always needs a boost, so I’ll continue taking the pills after I’m done with these samples!” -Jemima

Baby’s Vitamin D3 provides 400 I.U. of supplemental vitamin D3 in just one drop, to support bone health and healthy immunity.*

Vitamin D is another key nutrient that should not be overlooked in establishing a healthy foundation. During development, Vitamin D3 is important for many foundational processes that influence infants and children. Historically, vitamin D has been known to promote calcium absorption and bone homeostasis. We now understand that vitamin D is also plays a role in immunity. Like omega-3s, vitamin D promotes healthy cell signals. Essentially, vitamin D helps calm overactive signals, as well as promotes molecules that support our immune system. Vitamin D also supports the production of serotonin and melatonin, and has been shown to support normal sleep patterns as well as a healthy mood- both of which are music to the ears of new parents.

Unfortunately, there is a global vitamin D deficiency. 67% of children in the U.S. ages 1-11  do not have adequate levels of vitamin D. This is largely due to many adults and children spending more time indoors. Sunblock is also widely used now, and it impairs the ability of the skin to synthesize vitamin D. The best choice for many individuals is to supplement with an adequate daily dose of vitamin D.

Baby’s DHA provides 485 mg of DHA and 350 mg of EPA per 5 ml serving, for continued support for babies’ brain, eye, and nervous system development following birth.*

Pregnancy and postnatal health are gaining more attention. This is prompting authorities like the American Pregnancy Association to offer expert advice for pregnant and lactating women looking to improve their health and the health of their offspring. For those wanting to improve their omega-3 status, consuming cold water fish like sardines, salmon and mackerel would be beneficial but for the pregnant or lactating mother mercury contamination in fish is a concern. The American Pregnancy Association recommends only the highest quality supplements like Nordic Naturals Prenatal and Baby’s DHA. Because giving pregnant mothers and their children any advantage in an increasingly nutritionally challenging world is not only founded on science, it makes good sense.

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Photo courtesy of Nordic Naturals

Nordic Naturals gives us that nutritional foundation for healthy pregnancies and healthy babies!

You can find many Nordic Naturals supplements at local health food stores or you can order on their website.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

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