Iron is extremely important in pregnancy for a number of reasons. This is the element that helps red blood cells carry the right amount of oxygen to the cells and maintains a healthy immune system. It is extremely important during the later stages of a pregnancy because women can become anemic without it.
Becoming anemic can cause many issues for both mother and infant. There is a greater risk that the mother will need a blood transfusion after she gives birth and there are greater chances that the baby will be born prematurely or with other health issues.
Your body uses iron regularly while you are pregnant. Pregnant women are suggested to consume 27 mg of iron every day. Not having enough iron to keep up with the demand can cause you to become anemic. Symptoms of anemia may be fatigue and difficulty when trying to fight off infection. There are also studies that show iron deficiencies may be linked to postpartum depression.
Even though iron is used in great number toward the later stages of your pregnancy, it is important to build up iron throughout the early stages so that you are certain to have enough when you need it. Some women, who have found that they are not able to receive enough iron through their daily diet, are even forced to begin taking a supplement to make up for the difference.
Studies have recently been conducted in New Zealand that show a significant correlation between the amount of milk that a woman drinks and issues with iron deficiency. These issues have been linked to issues during one of the most important phases of fetal development and this new study had gained concern throughout the maternity industry.
This study cited a study from the University of Aukland that showed the importance of iron in the development in a baby’s brain. For example, iron is important both in babies and toddlers when their brain is developing. Iron deficiency has been shown to have a small, but significant, impact on the way the brain functions and may affect behavior and learning in small children and babies.
During this study, it was found that seven percent of the newborns in New Zealand had iron deficiencies. They also determined that the iron stores in babies whose mothers consumed higher amounts of milk while they were pregnant were shown to have low iron stores.
One pediatrician who was involved in the study had this to say about the results, “While milk is an important source of calcium, it is a poor source of iron. Milk is also quite filling and so can reduce the appetite for other foods that are better sources of iron. Pregnant women with iron deficiency are more likely to go into premature labor or deliver a baby with low birth weight. They are also more likely to be iron deficient while they are breastfeeding. “
It has become known that issues with iron deficiency are one of the major problems that are facing the world. Most of those who are at risk are under the age of five and pregnant women. Studies have also shown that it is twice as common for children, aged six months to two years, to develop issues with iron deficiency when they live in New Zealand over those in the same age group who are living in the US, Europe or even Australia.
The number of women who are suffering from iron deficiency has also risen through the years. In 1997 about 3% of women developed iron deficiency while they were pregnant, but that number rose to 7% in 2008 and 1009. It is suggested, by the researchers of this study, for women to who consume large amounts of milk to take iron supplements.
While this may help prevent negative effects, you should still discuss the issue with your doctor. You could also increase the amount of nutrients that are in your milk by choosing a brand that supplies your body with more nutrients, including iron. Iron deficiency is a very serious problem for pregnant women and if you feel that you may be at risk, you should talk it over with your doctor.