New Zealand’s Ministry of Health (MOH) rarely recommends using supplements, but does urge mothers to take in additional iodine and folic acid before and during pregnancy, and iodine when breastfeeding, to help avoid neurodevelopmental problems in their babies. In the first study of its kind gauging how well the MOH’s advice in this area is followed, University of Otago researchers reveal barely more than one-third of the Kiwi mothers surveyed report adhering fully to these recommendations.
As important as iodine and folic acid are, they are far from being the only micronutrients that are required in higher levels before and during pregnancy, and while breastfeeding. Other micronutrients such as vitamin C, lysine, proline, the B group of vitamins, iron and zinc, among many others, are also essential for a healthy baby and delivery, and for preventing complications during pregnancy.
For more information about the importance of micronutrients before and during pregnancy, and while breastfeeding, see parts one and two of a special feature article on the website of the Dr. Rath Research Institute.