intake during pregnancy through calcium supplements and calcium rich diet helps
to meet the growing needs of your baby and your body. Find out the good sources
of calcium and importance of calcium intake during pregnancy.
Calcium is an essential body electrolyte for normal cardiac function and essential to the clotting of blood. It is involved in the maintenance of normal muscle and nerve functions.
For Pregnant Women:
For Breastfeeding Mothers:
Now that you are pregnant, you need to take extra care of yourself to ensure health and wellbeing of the little life developing inside you. With other nutrients, your calcium requirement also increases in pregnancy. Your baby uses up around 200mg of calcium every day for her growth and development. Around 30 mg of calcium is found in the skeleton of a baby when born. Thereafter, in course of breastfeeding, your calcium intake must be increased to 1200mg every day to meet the growing needs of your baby.
Why do you Need Calcium during Pregnancy?
Your baby requires sufficient doses of calcium for her normal development. If you fail to take a calcium rich diet or in case you do not take the supplements, your body shall take away calcium from your bones to sustain your baby's developments. This in course of time shall reduce your bone mass density and you may suffer from osteoporosis. This condition indicates thinning of bones, thereby making them weak and brittle.
Even if you have no problems in pregnancy, it is essential you ensure your body gets the required dose of calcium daily. This shall ensure you maintain a strong bone mineral density and do not suffer from osteoporosis later.
What If You Are Lactose Intolerant?
If you are lactose intolerant you are not capable of digesting lactose that is there in milk and sugar. Lactose gives you a bloated feeling and sometimes diarrhoea as well. This happens due to lack of lactase in your body that helps in lactose digestion.
There is nothing to worry if you are lactose intolerant, as you can still get the required amount of calcium from other sources. Here are some suggestions that you can keep in mind:
You can try taking milk in small amounts when you take meals. It has been seen you can better tolerate milk when taken with solids.
Try milk products with less sugar in them. These could be cheese, yoghurt or cottage cheese.
Other non dairy products that you can try are tofu, broccoli, sardines and greens.
You can also try Lactaid milk that is rich in calcium.
In case you are not able to get the desired amount of calcium in pregnancy, your doctor may suggest calcium supplements to you. Usually, calcium supplements are prescribed to all pregnant women during pregnancy. The amount that you would need shall be decided by your doctor. Vitamin supplements do not contain the necessary amount of calcium, so you need to depend on your calcium supplements additionally.
Whether you need the calcium supplements or not shall be the complete discretion of your doctor. Please, do not make the mistake of deciding it yourself.
Great Sources of Calcium for Pregnant Women
If you are wondering what the good sources of calcium are apart from milk and the diary products here are some that we have listed for you.
Nuts are known to be rich sources of calcium. Apart from the calcium, you can also get zinc, magnesium and vitamin E in high amounts in nuts like almonds.
3 ounce of salmon contains around 180mg of calcium. You can take it as the main meal or as a salad. It is rich in omega 3 fatty acids as well that shall ensure proper brain development of your little one.
If you are a vegetarian, you can get much of your calcium from spinach. It is also rich in other vital nutrients like beta carotene, iron and folic acid.
There are actually plenty of ways you can incorporate this vial nutrient in your diet. So, moms enjoy and stay healthy.
Why is there an increased requirement of calcium during pregnancy? What will happen if calcium supplements are not taken during pregnancy? How can calcium supplements prevent osteoporosis? Discuss here.
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- The Indiaparenting Team