The MomBod Nutrition Philosophy
Unless a client is a strict vegetarian or vegan, I recommend eating meat during the prenatal and postnatal breastfeeding period. Why? Because meat is the best absorbable source of iron, which is important during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Meat is also a good source of choline, which is essential for embryonic and fetal gene expression, brain development, organ development, and placental function.
Maternal blood volume expands by almost 50% during pregnancy, which results in the dilution of red blood cells compared to the total blood volume. According to The World Health Organization, an estimated 42% of pregnant women worldwide develop iron-deficiency anemia during pregnancy.
Iron-deficiency anemia and choline deficiency can be largely prevented through diet and proper food combinations. I can help you optimize iron absorption and choline intake through proper diet planning, whether your meal plans include meat or not.
I encourage prenatal and postnatal women to consume milk and dairy products. I don’t really care if it’s whole, 2%, or nonfat, the difference in saturated fat content isn't likely to impact heart health. So, if drinking a nice 2% gets you to drink and enjoy two glasses of milk per day, go for it.
Milk is an excellent source of the essential fat-soluble vitamins A and D, the essential mineral calcium, and protein. Since vitamin A is fat-soluble, it is removed with the fat during the skimming process. Therefore, skim milk must be fortified with an equivalent amount of vitamin A to match the content naturally found in whole milk. Both whole milk and skim milk are naturally poor sources of vitamin D and are fortified in order to improve calcium absorption. The type of vitamins A and D used in milk fortification are readily available for breakdown by human digestive enzymes, even if fat isn't present in the food (like skim milk). Therefore, neither whole milk or skim milk is a better source of these vitamins than the other.
If you are lactose intolerant, there are still plenty of safe dairy options available. You don't have to give up dairy completely. I'm happy to help with suggestions!
You can certainly get the nutrients found in milk from eating other foods, but it will take more planning and careful product selection. That's why working with a dietitian like myself is so important. I can craft a nutritionally sound meal plan for you.
Please don't let scare tactics make you feel that you are doing a disservice to your family or yourself if you can't afford or don't have access to only organic foods and products.
What I do recommend...eat local. Get to know your local farmers and their agricultural practices.
GMO (genetically modified organism) is the most commonly used term, but people sometimes are use terms like GM (genetically modified), GE (genetically engineered), “transgenic crops” or “biotech crops.” With all the different names out there, it gets confusing. Unfortunately, this confusion also extends beyond the name, including GMO history and facts. There has been a lot of misinformation floating around the internet regarding this subject. I encourage you to do your own research and go to the GMO Answers website.
In short, I do not instruct my clients to avoid genetically engineered products. I'm all for knowing what is in your food and I'm not against labeling, but the scientific consensus is that GMOs are safe and labeling does lead to some consumer confusion.