Volume 5 Issue 5

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Page 8 of 63

I know, I know: the idea of having a baby may be a glimmer from where you are right now. Or not on your horizon at all. Or a fate you're actively trying to avoid. But as a midwife-doctor who has helped bring many babies into the world, there are three things I'd love for you to consider before you assume this article is not for you: 1. Half of all pregnancies in the US are not intended. (Don't forget that this statistic applies to uber-hip yoga-loving foodie women, too!) A friend of mine even named her baby Daisy, as in Whoopsie! 2. Your health LONG BEFORE you get pregnant determines your future baby's health. That includes protecting him from allergies, eczema, asthma, depression, gut problems, autoimmune disease, diabetes, heart disease, and even autism. Seriously. 3. The world we create today is the world our kids will inherit tomorrow. If we make our choices healthy now, we make our world healthy for them later. Here are the 7 most important things you can do — starting NOW — to up your ante on a healthy pregnancy LATER. And should you find yourself unexpectedly seeing two lines on a pregnancy test … well, you'll already have been creating a perfect environment for your little person. 7 Things to do Now If You Want to have a Healthy Baby Someday 1. If you're sexually active, take your vitamins. The medical recommendation is that all women who are having sex should take folic acid (a B-vitamin) because it's just that important for protecting your baby's health against neural tube defects. But not only that, it protects against miscarriage, preterm birth, high blood pressure, and preeclampsia in pregnancy, and can prevent autism in your baby. With autism rates in the US now at 1 in 68 kids, I'd say that's a vitamin worth taking! I recommend 400 mcg to 1 mg of the active form called methylfolate for optimum protection. Also, while you're at it, hop on the fish oil train and add in some vitamin D3 (1,000 to 2,000 units daily), both of which can prepare you for an optimal pregnancy, and which are great for your health even now. 2. Can the tuna — and all other high mercury fish. It's a scary fact: newborns are loaded up with about 300 chemicals that can be identified in their umbilical cord blood at birth. Fish is a super- nutritious protein source, but some are loaded with mercury. Mercury (and other heavy metals) in mom literally download directly to baby throughout the pregnancy and can cause a host of health problems. Mercury is particularly noxious because it affects the neurologic and hormonal systems. Check out the Environmental Working Group's list of fish to avoid for more information. Abby's Magazine - Volume 5 Issue 5| Page 9

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