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Why You Should Take DHA During Pregnancy and How Not to Do It
Expectant mothers are bombarded with new prenatal fish oil supplements. Are they effective? Are they safe? Should you be taking DHA at all during pregnancy? The answers are maybe, probably and yes – if you know what you’re doing.
First, there seems to be some confusion about the relationship between DHA and omega 3 fish oil. DHA is omega 3. This means that if you are trying to get DHA during pregnancy, you don’t need “prenatal” formula. A quality omega 3 fish oil supplement is not only sufficient, but preferable in many cases.
There are actually two omega 3s that mother and child need. The second is the EPA. In other words, if you plan to take DHA during pregnancy, you also need EPA, but not as much.
Why should I take omega 3s in the first place?
Both found in fish oil are part of every cell in our body. DHA is especially distributed in the brain and eyes, EPA in cell membranes. Research on this, even in Washington, did not go unnoticed.
Omega 3 has been shown to benefit four out of five major diseases or conditions for which soldiers receive hospital treatment. Among them are pregnancy and depression. The US Department of Defense is looking to add these essential oils to soldiers’ diets.
It is not only fighting performance that can be improved by omega-3. Some military advocates believe they can help reduce medical bills by millions of dollars. The DOD is looking into doing this for its pregnant female soldiers because the research is overwhelming.
This is what the scientists found.
It is estimated that 99 percent of people in the West are deficient in omega 3. Unless an expectant mother is getting EPA and DHA during pregnancy, this number includes her and her baby. This means that after the baby is born, it will be more:
1]Increased risk of depression, ADD, mood swings and emotional lability.
2]Low IQ scores – 8-10 points or more.
4]Coordination development issues.
A mother is also more likely to have premature birth and postpartum depression herself.
The growing fetus is almost an omega 3 sponge. Since our body cannot make these essential oils, the fetus will get them from the mother. If the mother does not get EPA and DHA during pregnancy then she may have deficiencies in both.
What about supplements?
The only way to get these oils is by supplementing or eating a lot of fish. The FDA is fine with refined additives but not with most fish. Heavy metals from the ocean are bad for everyone, but they are really deadly for young children.
As I mentioned earlier, there are no specific omega 3s for prenatal, postnatal or elderly citizens. In fact, many prenatal supplements I’ve seen are ineffective at best and dirty at worst. Do your research. Stick with quality. For more information in this regard, please visit my website.
Remember, your unborn baby receives nutrients from you. Talk to your doctor about taking EPA and DHA during pregnancy. You need at least two of you.
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