Weekly Nutrition advice
A well nourished woman usually develops a healthy placenta. Despite a good supply of nutrients a baby can become undernourished if the transportation across the placenta is inadequate. Iron is required by the mother to expand her blood volume and by the baby to establish good levels of hemoglobin. If iron levels fall, the efficiency of red blood cells in carrying oxygen is affected and tissues become deficient in energy.
- Zinc is stored in the placenta. High levels of zinc assure a greater birth weight baby
- Vitamin E, gingko biloba and co-enzyme Q10 are all thought to improve blood supply
You can improve the efficiency of the placenta in the following ways:
Eating a balanced diet; good nutrition is vital for a healthy placenta
Resting as much as possible - relax the muscles, particularly the abdominals, thereby increasing blood flow to the placenta. Practice relaxation techniques that help eliminate stress and tension from your system.
Most cell repair and cell growth takes place when you are asleep
Giving up work - you should try and stop work by week 32-34. To maintain adequate blood supply you need to rest in the last 2 months of pregnancy. Stress causes the blood cells to constrict thereby restricting flow. Overwork may cause premature birth and or low-birth weight baby.
Problems with the placenta are always linked to raised blood pressure, tobacco, caffeine, alcohol, and overwork and lack of rest. Tests can be conducted to detect placental malfunction; ultrasound measures flow to see if baby's growth is being retarded because of oxygen depravation.