Vitamin-B is the key when it comes to pregnancy, says Ranjana Sharma

Maintaining a balanced and healthy diet is important at all stages of life. When you are pregnant, it becomes all the more important to take care of your body to ensure that your baby’s development is healthy and that you do not develop deficiencies.

With regard to the nutrition of pregnant women, B vitamins or the B vitamin complex are of particular importance. Specifically, Vitamin B6, B9 (folic acid) and B12 are known to help relieve symptoms of pregnancy and reduce the risk of birth defects.

Taking prenatal vitamins is important because it ensures that you and your baby get the vitamins necessary for a healthy pregnancy. That said, vitamins only support a healthy diet, they don’t replace one. The eight vitamin B complexes all play an important role in your health and strength during your baby’s development. While Complex B can be found in supplements, it is even more desirable to get these nutrients from vitamin-rich foods. Foods rich in vitamin B provide nourishing nutrients for your developing baby and boost your natural energy, but extra-folic acid as a supplement is recommended three to four months before pregnancy until the first trimester.

Vitamin B-1: Thiamine: This vitamin B complex plays an important role in the development of the baby’s brain. About 1.4 milligrams of vitamin B-1 is the recommended daily dosage for pregnant women. Natural sources of vitamin include yeast, brown rice, whole grain pasta and pork.

Vitamin B-2: Riboflavin: Since vitamin V-2 is soluble in water, the body does not store it, which is why you must replace it with prenatal vitamins or your diet. Riboflavin is important for the health of your eyes and skin. About 1.4 milligrams of vitamin B-2 is the recommended daily dose for pregnant women. Some common sources of vitamin are turkey, chicken. fish, green vegetables, dairy products and eggs. Vitamin B-3: niacin: this vitamin improves the metabolism and digestion of nutrients. 18 milligrams of vitamin B-3 is the recommended daily dose for pregnant women.

Vitamin B-5: Pantothenic acid: This vitamin is useful for leg cramps and also helps create hormones. SIx milligrams of vitamin B-5 is the recommended daily dosage for pregnant women.

Vitamin B-6: Pyridoxine: It plays an important role in the development of your baby’s brain and nervous system. Vitamin B-6 also plays a role in the production of two essential neurotransmitters – serotonin and norepinephrine. Natural sources of pyridoxine include bananas, whole grain cereals, beans and nuts.

Vitamin B-7: Biotin: approximately 30 mcg of vitamin B-1 is the recommended daily dose for pregnant women. Biotin deficiency can occur during pregnancy, so you need to make sure you have enough. Natural sources of biotin include egg yolk, liver, Swiss chard, yeast and milk. Vitamin B-9: Folic acid: it is perhaps the most important vitamin B for pregnant women. 400 mcg of vitamin B-1 is the recommended daily dose during and after pregnancy. Food sources include grapefruit, oranges, broccoli, and green leafy vegetables like spinach. Asparagus is good too.

Vitamin B-12: Cobalamin: It helps maintain your nervous system. Pregnant women are advised to take approximately 2.6 mcg of cobalamin per day. Fish, poultry and milk are good sources of vitamin B-12.

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