Why do pregnant women need iron supplements?

Why do pregnant women need iron supplements? Why pregnant women need an iron supplements menu? Iron is a very important trace element, helping to form red blood cells, and strengthening the immune system, improving the body’s resistance. Iron deficiency will lead to anemia, which is very dangerous to health, especially for pregnant women.

Many expectant mothers will have iron deficiency or anemia during pregnancy check. The doctor will tell you to take more iron supplements. What is going on? Today, a good assistant for pregnant women will give you a comprehensive analysis of why pregnant women need iron supplements.

The amount of iron needed to provide every day for pregnant mothers

Why pregnant women need iron supplements? Because when pregnant, women feed more for babies, so the amount of blood in the body increases, the mother’s body needs to increase the production of red blood cells, need more nutrition, and more oxygen to ensure the health of the mother and child. Therefore, the amount of iron in pregnant women will double, about 60 mg/day. Without enough iron, pregnant mothers will suffer from anemia, dizziness, pale skin, fatigue, drowsiness, … and the fetus is likely to be stillborn, premature birth, developmental delay, and birth defects.

In addition, there are also many cases of pregnant women having excess iron and thalassemia. Excess iron accumulates in the mother’s body, putting pressure on the spleen and liver. Long-term will lead to liver failure, diabetes due to pancreatic dysfunction, and cardiovascular disease.

According to the recommendations of the World Health Organization WHO, when they first become pregnant, women should take iron supplements/tablets every day, taking until 1 month after birth. The additional dose is 60mg of iron with 400mcg folic acid per day. Also should use iron supplements, folic acid for pregnant women.

In the case of pregnant women with severe iron deficiency, they will need an intravenous infusion at the hospital for 2-3 months.

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Iron supplement menu for pregnant women

The safest and most secure is the iron-supplemented foods for pregnant women that are easy to absorb. Iron is abundant in red meats, heart, liver, fish, clams, oysters, beans, cereals, dark green vegetables, dried fruits. In the meal, there are about 30-90g of meat, fish, the amount of iron absorption will be 10-15%. If you eat a lot of vegetables, you will need more iron because animal-based iron absorbs better than plant-based iron. Eat a form of iron that is soluble in both animals and plants, eat enough protein, and should not eat a lot of foods rich in phosphorus as this will reduce iron absorption. Let’s talk about more, why pregnant women need the iron supplements menu?

In fact, pregnant women’s demand for iron has increased from the second trimester, mainly because the blood volume has increased, and the blood contains a large amount of iron. The blood volume of pregnant women gradually increases from the 6th to 8th weeks of pregnancy, reaches the peak at the 32nd to 34th weeks of the second trimester, and maintains to the 2 to 3 weeks postpartum; the blood volume during pregnancy increases by about 30-40%, about 1000ml, of which plasma Increase by about 40-50%, red blood cells increased by about 18-30%, the increase in plasma is more than the increase in red blood cells, resulting in relative dilution of blood, and physiological anemia; when hemoglobin is less than 100g/L, anemia should be considered.

To create better blood, pregnant mothers also need to supplement Vitamin B12, Folate, and synthetic folic acid, eat banana, dark green leafy vegetables, eat bread, cereal, pasta, and soy milk.

However, during food processing, natural iron is lost, or work is busy, so pregnant mothers cannot get enough iron. So in order to meet the daily requirement of iron, it is necessary to take iron medicine.

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Do pregnant women need iron supplements? when?

Iron tablets for pregnant women usually have 2 forms of inorganic iron and organic iron. Organic iron is preferred because it is easily absorbed and causes less constipation.

In order for the body to enhance iron absorption, pregnant mothers should take iron tablets on an empty stomach and drink vitamin C-rich drinks such as orange juice, lemon juice, … because vitamin C is an iron absorption aid and is one of the Hematopoietic factors, in addition, will help relieve constipation caused by iron intake. The best time to drink iron is to wake up early in the morning or 1-2 hours after meals.

Because calcium interferes with iron absorption, when taking iron supplements, pregnant mothers should avoid taking at the same time as milk, calcium supplements, or foods high in calcium.

Avoid drinking iron with coffee, tea because tannins or caffeine will inhibit the absorption of iron.

Need to consult a specialist, absolutely do not buy iron supplements on your own, if the wrong dose can be dangerous to the health of the mother and fetus.

Due to the above reasons, now you know Why do pregnant women need iron supplements? Therefore do not forget to take the ferrous sulfate tablet guidance of your doctor.

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Precautions for iron supplementation:

  •   1. Do not drink strong tea and coffee during iron supplementation, as it will affect the absorption effect of iron
  •   2. The best way to supplement iron is to supplement food and iron at the same time
  •   3. Iron should be taken after meals to reduce gastrointestinal reactions
  •   4. Most iron preparations have some unpalatable taste and gastrointestinal reactions, please pay attention to screening

What do pregnant women eat for iron supplements?

Iron in food mainly in two forms, one is the heme iron, found primarily in animal tissues , such as beef, lean meat, animal liver, egg yolk, etc., it can be well absorbed by our body; the other is non-blood red Plain iron is mainly found in plant foods , such as cereals, beans, fruits and vegetables. The absorption rate is not high. It is recommended to eat it with meat and foods rich in vitamin C, which can effectively promote the absorption of iron.

Foods for iron supplementation for pregnant women can refer to the following:
·Animal internal organs, animal blood (duck blood, pig blood), lean meat, fish, poultry, egg yolk, oysters, fresh shellfish, etc.
·The iron content in soy products is very high, and the intestinal tract The absorption rate is also better
. It is recommended to eat more pasta (noodles, bread, etc.) as a staple food. The iron content in pasta is more than in rice, and the intestinal absorption rate is also better
. Vegetables and fruits: leeks, celery leaves, oranges, kiwis, grapes, cherries, peaches, pineapples, bananas, dates, etc.
·It is recommended to eat eggs with meat, eggs, and tomatoes, which can increase the absorption rate of iron

Twin pregnant women receive iron supplements on time, why are they still anemia?

From a fertilized egg to two babies of about two kilograms, all their nutrition comes from their mothers. The two babies have high iron requirements. Even pregnant mothers with a healthy diet will inevitably suffer from anemia or iron deficiency. Anemia not only makes people dizzy but also increases various complications of mother and child, we must pay attention to it.

What should I do if I am diagnosed with anemia? Do twin pregnant women need more iron supplements? Doctors suggested that by supplementing iron with food, pregnant women should increase their iron intake from the second trimester of pregnancy, increase their daily intake of red meat by 20 to 50 grams, and eat animal offal (pig liver, etc.) or animal blood (pig) 1 to 2 times a week. Blood, duck blood, etc.). At the same time, you should take in vegetables and fruits that contain more vitamin C to improve the absorption and utilization of dietary iron; iron supplements according to the doctor’s advice, pregnant women need more iron in the second half of pregnancy. The dietary supplement is obviously insufficient, and iron supplements should be supplemented in time according to the doctor’s advice. Iron supplements with small gastrointestinal reactions and high oral absorption rates should be used. In severe cases, iron supplements can be used intravenously.

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Dinesh Gamage

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