Bottom line is cut down on processed food. Processed foods are not good because most nutritional value is lost; the preservatives added are bad for our health. Many processed foods contain a high amount of salt content, which leads to higher blood pressure and heart disease. Processed foods are any foods that are not in their raw form. When shopping, pay attention to the packaging as most foods are processed – the more the ingredients on the label (especially the ones ending with ‘ite’ or ‘ate’), the more processed they are. Watch out for those with salt/sugar as the first 5 ingredients and go for natural foods as much as possible.
We Live In A World Of Processed Foods
By Personalized Women’s Healthcare | Thursday, September 11th, 2014
By Personalized Women’s Healthcare | Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014
Exercise. Not just a few times a week, but every day. Movement is life. Research has shown that exercising daily brings tremendous benefits to our health, including an increase of lifespan, lowering of risk of diseases, higher bone density, and weight loss. Increase activity in your life. Choose walking over driving for close distances. Climb the stairs instead of using the elevator. Join some aerobics classes. Take up a sport of your liking.
Pick exercises you enjoy. When you enjoy the sports, you’ll naturally want to do them. Exercise isn’t about suffering punishment; it’s about being healthy and having fun at the same time. current time Adding variety to your exercises will keep them interesting and keep you moving.
Work out different parts of your body. Don’t just do cardio exercises (such as jogging). Give your full body a proper workout. The easiest way is to engage in sports since they work out different muscle groups. Popular sports include basketball, football, swimming, tennis and more. Find a personal trainer at your local fitness center.
Learn More About Pelvic Exams
By Personalized Women’s Healthcare | Tuesday, August 19th, 2014
Why your physician performs the pelvic exam?
You have heard on the news that the pelvic exam is not needed each year. As your gynecologist, Dr. Fleming and Dr. Jacoby believe it still a necessary exam in caring for their patients. We believe the pelvic exam can detect medical issues the patient may not know exists.
A pelvic exam is a way for your gynecologist to look for signs of illness in certain organs in a woman’s body. The word “pelvic” refers to the pelvis. The exam is used to look at a woman’s:
- Vulva (external genital organs)
- Uterus (the womb)
- Cervix (opening from the vagina to the uterus)
- Fallopian tubes (tubes that carry eggs to the womb)
- Ovaries (organs that produce eggs)
- Bladder (the sac that holds urine)
- Rectum (the chamber that connects the colon to the anus)
When Are Pelvic Exams Done?
Pelvic exams are performed:
- During a yearly physical exam.
- When a woman is pregnant.
- When a doctor is checking for an infection (such as chlamydia, vaginosis, trichomoniasis, and others).
- When a woman is having pain in her pelvic area or low back.
By Personalized Women’s Healthcare | Wednesday, May 21st, 2014
Is there anything I can do to get the best possible pictures?
Yes! DRINK LOTS OF WATER – please stay well hydrated for several days prior to your appointment. Fluid around the baby’s face helps us get beautiful pictures. If your baby is more active at a certain time of day, please schedule your appointment around that time. If your baby responds to sugary foods, please have some prior to your appointment. For best results, 3D/4D Ultrasounds should be done between 24-28 weeks.
Do I need a full bladder?
Your bladder does not need to be uncomfortably full, however, please try to avoid completely emptying before your appointment.
Does insurance cover this service?
No, this is an elective ultrasound. We accept credit cards and cash. Gender Sono $85 3D/4D Sono $125
Is this harmful to mother or baby?
Studies have shown that there is no harm to mother or baby from ultrasound when administered by trained professionals. All of our technologists are registered with the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS) and have extensive training and experience in performing an obstetric ultrasound.
Am I guaranteed to find out the gender of my baby?
No, not always, it depends on the cooperation of your baby. The best time to see the gender would be starting at 16 weeks of the pregnancy.
Am I guaranteed good pictures?
No, not always. This also depends on of the cooperation of your baby and maternal anatomy.
Are family and friends allowed to come for the ultrasound?
Yes. Our office can accommodate 7-8 people in the sonogram room.
By Personalized Women’s Healthcare | Thursday, May 8th, 2014
Mirena is an FDA-approved intrauterine contraceptive system (also known as an IUD*) that is recommended for women who’ve had a child. It’s made of soft, flexible plastic and is placed by your healthcare provider during a routine office visit.
One of the most effective birth control methods—over 99%—and does not rely on you to be effective
No daily routine and no monthly refills. It lasts for as long as you want, for up to 5 years, the timeframe is up to you. You can do a simple monthly check to make sure it’s in place, your physician can explain how.
You can have it removed by your healthcare provider at any time, and try to become pregnant right away
It delivers small amounts of progestin locally into your uterus
Approved to treat heavy periods
Mirena is the first and only birth control that’s FDA-approved to treat heavy periods in women who choose intrauterine birth control.
ParaGard® may be a good option if you want to avoid or can’t tolerate hormones. Unlike many other forms of birth control, ParaGard® won’t interfere with your natural menstrual cycle. The most common side effect of ParaGard® are heavier and longer periods and spotting between periods; for most women, these subside after 2-3 months.
Generally your doctor can place ParaGard® within minutes during a routine office visit. And the best part is that your doctor can remove it at any time if you decide you want to have children later; you can even start trying to get pregnant that same day.
ParaGard® is an intrauterine contraceptive (IUC) that’s been available to women for over 20 years in the U.S.
ParaGard® is more than 99% effective at preventing pregnancy. In fact it’s one of the most effective forms of birth control available, and it lasts as long as you want: two, five, even up to 10 years.
IUD’s should be placed within 7 days of the start of your period. If you’ve just had a baby, an IUD should not be placed earlier than 6 weeks after you give birth or as directed by your physician. Be sure to tell him if you are breastfeeding and plan to continue breastfeeding after having an IUD placed.
IUD isn’t appropriate for you if you:
- Might be pregnant
- Have had a serious pelvic infection called pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) unless you have had a normal pregnancy after the infection went away
- Have an untreated pelvic infection now
- Have had a serious pelvic infection in the past 3 months after a pregnancy
- Can get infections easily. For example, you have: more than one sexual partner or your partner has more than one partner, problems with your immune system, intravenous drug abuse
- Have or suspect you might have cancer of the uterus or cervix
- Have bleeding from the vagina that has not been explained
- Have liver disease or a liver tumor
- Have breast cancer now or in the past or suspect you have breast cancer
- Have a condition of the uterus that changes the shape of the uterine cavity, such as large fibroid tumors
- Are allergic to levonorgestrel, silicone or polyethylene
Managing a High-Risk Pregnancy
By Personalized Women’s Healthcare | Thursday, April 24th, 2014
Most of the time having a baby is a natural process. After a full-term pregnancy, a woman goes into labor on or near her due date and gives birth to a healthy baby. A day or two later she leaves the hospital to begin day-to-day life with her growing family. But not all pregnancies go smoothly. Some women experience what doctors refer to as a high-risk pregnancy.
A pregnancy is considered high-risk when there are potential complications that could affect the mother, the baby, or both. High-risk pregnancies require management by a specialist to help ensure the best outcome for the mother and baby.
Risk Factors for High-Risk Pregnancy
Reasons that a pregnancy may be considered high risk include:
Maternal Age: One of the most common risk factors for a high-risk pregnancy is the age of the mother-to-be. Women who will be under 17 or over 35 when their baby is due are at greater risk of complications than those between their late teens and early 30s. The risk of miscarriage and genetic defects further increases after age 40.
Medical conditions that exist before pregnancy: Conditions such as high blood pressure, breathing, kidney, or heart problems, diabetes, autoimmune disease, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) or chronic infections such as human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) can present risks for the mother and/or her unborn baby. A history of miscarriage, problems with a previous pregnancy or pregnancies, or family histories of genetic disorders are also risk factors for a
If you have a medical condition, it’s important to consult your doctor before you decide to become pregnant. Your doctor may run tests, adjust medications, or advise you of precautions you need to take to optimize the health of you and your baby.
Medical conditions that occur during pregnancy: Even if you are healthy when you become pregnant, it is possible to develop or be diagnosed with problems during pregnancy that can affect you and your baby. Two of the more common pregnancy-related problems are:
- Preeclampsia is a syndrome that includes high blood pressure, urinary protein, and swelling; it can be dangerous or even fatal for the mother or baby if not treated. With proper management, however, most women who develop preeclampsia have healthy babies.
- Gestational diabetes is a type of diabetes that develops during pregnancy. Women with gestational diabetes may have healthy pregnancies and babies if they follow the treatment plan from their health-care provider. Usually the diabetes resolves after delivery. However women with gestational diabetes are at increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Pregnancy-related issues: Often a pregnancy is classified as high risk because of issues that arise from the pregnancy itself and that have little to do with the mother’s health. These include:
- Premature labor is labor that begins before 37 weeks of pregnancy. Although there is no way to know which women will experience preterm labor or birth, there are factors that place women at higher risk, such as certain infections, a shortened cervix, or previous preterm birth.
- Multiple births mean you are carrying more than one baby (twins, triplets, quadruplets, etc.). Multiple pregnancies, which are more common as women are using more infertility treatments, increase the risk of premature labor, gestational diabetes, and pregnancy-induced high blood pressure.
- Placenta previa is a condition in which the placenta covers the cervix. The condition can cause bleeding, especially if a woman has contractions. If the placenta still covers the cervix close to delivery, the doctor may schedule a cesarean section to reduce bleeding risks to the mother and baby.
Fetal problems, which can sometimes be seen on ultrasound. Approximately 2% to 3% of all babies have a minor or major structural problem in development. Sometimes there may be a family history of fetal problems, but other times these problems are completely unexpected.
Exercise During Pregnancy
By Personalized Women’s Healthcare | Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014
Maintaining a regular exercise routine throughout your pregnancy can help you stay healthy and feel your best. Regular exercise during pregnancy can improve your posture and decrease some common discomforts such as backaches and fatigue. There is evidence that physical activity may prevent gestational diabetes (diabetes that develops during pregnancy), relieve stress, and build more stamina needed for labor and delivery.
If you were physically active before your pregnancy, you should be able to continue your activity in moderation. Don’t try to exercise at your former level; instead, do what’s most comfortable for you now. Low impact aerobics are encouraged versus high impact.
The physician should closely monitor the pregnant competitive athlete.
If you have never exercised regularly before, you can safely begin an exercise program during pregnancy after consulting with your physician, but do not try a new, strenuous activity. Walking is considered safe to initiate when pregnant.
The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology recommends 30 minutes or more of moderate exercise per day on most if not all days of the week unless you have a medical or pregnancy complication.
Who Should Not Exercise During Pregnancy?
If you have a medical problem, such as asthma, heart disease, or diabetes, exercise may not be advisable. Exercise may also be harmful if you have a pregnancy-related condition such as:
- Bleeding or spotting
- Low placenta
- Threatened or recurrent miscarriage
- Previous premature births or history of early labor
- Weak cervix
Talk with your physician before beginning an exercise program.
What Exercises Are Safe During Pregnancy?
Most exercises are safe to perform during pregnancy, as long as you exercise with caution and do not overdo it.
The safest and most productive activities are swimming, brisk walking, indoor stationary cycling, step or elliptical machines, and low-impact aerobics (taught by a certified aerobics instructor). These activities carry little risk of injury, benefit your entire body, and can be continued until birth.
Tennis and racquetball are generally safe activities, but changes in balance during pregnancy may affect rapid movements. Other activities such as jogging can be done in moderation, especially if you were doing them before your pregnancy. You may want to choose exercises or activities that do not require great balance or coordination, especially later in pregnancy.
What Exercises Should Be Avoided During Pregnancy?
There are certain exercises and activities that can be harmful if performed during pregnancy. They include:
- Holding your breath during any activity.
- Activities where falling is likely (such as skiing and horseback riding).
- Contact sports such as softball, football, basketball, and volleyball.
- Any exercise that may cause even mild abdominal trauma such as activities that include jarring motions or rapid changes in direction.
- Activities that require extensive jumping, hopping, skipping, bouncing, or running.
- Deep knee bends, full sit-ups, double leg raises, and straight-leg toe touches.
- Bouncing while stretching.
- Waist-twisting movements while standing.
- Heavy exercise spurts followed by long periods of no activity.
- Exercise in hot, humid weather.
Eating Right When Pregnant
By Personalized Women’s Healthcare | Friday, April 18th, 2014
Good nutrition during pregnancy and enough of it is very important for your baby to grow and develop. You should consume about 300 more calories per day than you did before you became pregnant.
Goals For Healthy Eating When Pregnant
Eat a variety of foods to get all the nutrients you need. Recommended daily servings include 6-11 servings of bread and grains, two to four servings of fruit, four or more servings of vegetables, four servings of dairy products, and three servings of protein sources (meat, poultry, fish, eggs or nuts). Use fats and sweets sparingly. Shellfish, salmon, tilapia, and catfish are fine to eat while pregnant.
Choose foods high in fiber that are enriched such as whole-grain bread, cereals, pasta, rice, fruits, and vegetables.
Make sure you are getting enough vitamins and minerals in your daily diet while pregnant. You should take a prenatal vitamin supplement to make sure you are consistently getting enough vitamins and minerals every day. We recommend Wellness Essentials Pregnancy through our website PWHCARE.com which will be mailed directly to you.
Eat and drink at least four servings of dairy products and calcium-rich foods a day to help ensure that you are getting 1000-1300 mg of calcium in your daily diet during pregnancy. Limit caffeine to 12 oz. per day.
Eat at least three servings of iron-rich foods per day to ensure you are getting 27 mg of iron daily.
Choose at least one good source of vitamin C every day, such as oranges, grapefruits, strawberries, honeydew, papaya, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussel sprouts, green peppers, tomatoes, and mustard greens. Pregnant women need 70 mg of vitamin C a day.
Choose at least one good source of folic acid every day, like dark green leafy vegetables, veal, and legumes (lima beans, black beans, black-eyed peas, and chickpeas). Every pregnant woman needs at least 0.4 mg of folic acid per day to help prevent neural tube defects such as spina bifida.
Choose at least one source of vitamin A every other day. Sources of vitamin A include carrots, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, spinach, water squash, turnip greens, beet greens, apricots, and cantaloupe.
Stay away from unpasteurized soft cheeses (brie, feta, Blue cheese, soft Mexican cheese).
Fish containing high mercury levels (mackerel, halibut, tuna, tilefish) needs to be avoided.
Heat deli meats and hot dogs prior to consumption.
Dealing With Morning Sickness
For many women, the toughest part of early pregnancy is morning sickness. If you are suffering from nausea, vomiting, or both, you need safe measures that will bring you some relief. Your best course of action for managing morning sickness is home treatment. By following a few proven guidelines, you are likely to gain significant relief from nausea and vomiting. Home treatment measures for morning sickness include:
- Changing what, when, and how much you eat. Small meals throughout the day.
- Taking ginger, vitamin B6, or vitamin B12, which may reduce nausea and/or vomiting during pregnancy.
- Avoiding foods and smells that make you feel sick.
- Trying acupressure, which seems to work for some women.
If you have severe, persistent nausea and vomiting, consult your doctor. This uncommon complication of pregnancy can lead to dehydration and malnutrition, sometimes requiring prescribed medicine or hospitalization.
Benefits of Coffee Do NOT Apply to Pregnant Women
By Personalized Women’s Healthcare | Thursday, April 10th, 2014
By Dr. Mercola
In recent years, research has emerged demonstrating that coffee—in moderation—may have a number of previously unrecognized health-promoting properties. As a result of the rather impressive list of therapeutic benefits, I’ve modified my stance on coffee.
However, it’s important to understand that coffee is both a potent drug, and a whole food provided it’s organically grown, and the drug element of coffee can present problems for pregnant women.
Caffeine can significantly impact the growing fetus as it is able to freely pass through the placenta, and since caffeine does not provide any benefits to your baby, only potential hazards, I strongly recommend pregnant women avoid ALL forms of caffeine.
Unfortunately, most people (pregnant or not) use coffee for its energy-boosting properties, which ends up serving as a band-aid for poor nutrition. If you’re supplying your body with the nutrients it needs, you simply won’t need the extra energy boost.
If this sounds like you, you may want to consider taking a look at your dietary habits. Proper nutrition clearly becomes even more important when pregnant or planning a pregnancy.
Coffee in Pregnancy Tied to Smaller, Later Newborns
In a recent Norwegian study,1 which included data on nearly 60,000 women, coffee and other caffeinated beverages increased the odds of delivering a low birth weight baby and/or extended the gestation period.
Lead researcher Dr. Verena Sengpiel, an obstetrician/gynecologist at the Sahlgrenska Academy of Sahlgrenska University in Goteborg, Sweden, believes the current recommendations from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists should be re-evaluated. American women are currently advised to limit their caffeine intake during pregnancy to two cups of coffee per day.2
According to Dr. Sengpiel, this may be too much, even though her observational study cannot prove a cause-and-effect between caffeine and low birth weight. She told MedicineNet.com:
“We cannot say from our data whether caffeine is the specific substance responsible for the fetus being at greater risk of [becoming a] low birth weight infant, nor did we study if these babies actually had special health problems during the neonatal period.”
Still, higher caffeine consumption was found to be associated with an increased risk for reduced birth weight. Every 100 mg of caffeine consumed by the mother per day equated to a nearly one-ounce reduction in the baby’s weight at birth.
Every 100 mg of caffeine also increased the length of the pregnancy by five hours. Interestingly, when the source of the caffeine was coffee, the length of the pregnancy was extended by eight hours. The reason for this difference is unknown. Seeing how your average cup of coffee contains anywhere between 95-200 mg of caffeine, it may be best to err on the side of caution. According to the featured article:3
“Dr. Jennifer Wu, an obstetrician/gynecologist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, said, ‘Other studies have indicated that caffeine can affect fetal weight, so this is in accord with findings of other studies.’ Why caffeine might cause this effect is unclear, she said.
‘We do know that caffeine crosses the placenta and the baby is not able to metabolize it very well, [so] it may affect some of the factors associated with growth,’ Wu theorized. She advised that women limit the amount of caffeine they consume during pregnancy. The World Health Organization says 300 mg a day, but in the United States the recommended amount is 200 mg a day, she added.”
Caffeine During Pregnancy May Damage Your Baby’s Heart
Previous animal research from 20094 found that drinking the equivalent of just two cups of coffee while pregnant could be enough to affect long-term heart function of the offspring. They also found that this minimal exposure could lead to increased levels of body fat in males when compared to offspring not exposed to caffeine in the womb. Scott Rivkees, Yale’s Associate Chair of Pediatric Research and a senior researcher on the study, told Medical News Today:5
“Our studies raise potential concerns about caffeine exposure during very early pregnancy, but further studies are necessary to evaluate caffeine’s safety during pregnancy.”
In the study, mice given caffeine during pregnancy produced embryos with “a thinner layer of tissue separating some of the heart’s chambers than the group that was not given caffeine.” Long term, this resulted in a 20 percent increase in body fat in males, and a 35 percent decrease in cardiac function. According to Gerald Weissman, M.D. and editor-in-chief of the FASEB Journal:6
“Caffeine is everywhere: in what we drink, in what we eat, in pills that we use to relieve pain, and even in candy… This report shows that despite popular notions of safety, there’s one place it probably shouldn’t be: in the diet of an expectant mother.”
When You’re Eating for Two…
There is rarely a more nutritionally demanding time during a woman’s life than pregnancy (and later breastfeeding) when your intake of nutrients from foods and supplements are needed not only to keep your body running but also to nourish and support your rapidly growing baby. Proper nutrition is crucial at all stages of fetal development, and if mom doesn’t eat right, her growing baby won’t either.
If you’re a woman in your childbearing years and you’re planning to have children anytime soon, it’s imperative that you start eating healthy now. Research7 published just last year showed that women who ate a vegetable-rich diet during the year before pregnancy had a significantly lower risk of having a baby with certain birth defects as women who ate an unhealthy high-sugar diet. Specifically, compared to those who ate unhealthily, women on a healthy diet experienced:
- One-half lower risk of anencephaly, a neural tube defect that interferes with brain development and often results in miscarriage
- Up to a one-third lower risk of cleft lip
- One-quarter lower risk of cleft palate
- One-fifth lower risk of spina bifida, another neural-tube defect
Unfortunately, the researchers lumped saturated fats in with “unhealthy fat,” when they are actually crucial for pregnant women (and everyone, for that matter), and incorrectly labeled whole grains as healthy, when the majority of Americans need to limit them. So I believe their results may have been skewed and may have shown an even greater benefit if a truly healthy diet had been defined.
Crucial Nutrients for Pregnant Women (and Women of Childbearing Age)
Healthy nutrition cannot be limited to a handful of nutrients; it can only be achieved by eating a variety of whole, high-quality foods daily. I cannot stress this enough, as if you seek to make up for a diet of processed foods by taking a multi-vitamin or eating a salad here and there, you are deceiving yourself and missing the point — and the benefits.
For a succinct and easy-to-follow overview of the types of foods and nutrients that will support a healthy pregnancy, read my optimized nutrition plan. Ideally, by the time you enter pregnancy, you will already be in the Intermediate or Advanced stage, but even the Beginner stage is far better that the typical American diet. As you’ll see, it is focused on minimizing processed foods while increasing your intake of vegetables, healthy fats and high-quality sources of protein, all of which are ideal for nurturing a growing fetus.
For more detailed healthy pregnancy guidelines, please review my special report: “No-Nonsense Guide to a Naturally Healthy Pregnancy and Baby,” which covers far more than the basic nutrition tips offered here. Some of the highlights you’ll want to be sure to include though are:
Fermented Foods and/or Probiotics: Nearly everyone can benefit from optimizing the balance of good vs. bad bacteria in their gut using probiotics, but if you are pregnant or planning to be, this is of utmost importance to you and your new baby. One of the best ways to do this is to avoid sugar and processed foods and to include fermented foods in your diet.
Research shows giving pregnant women and newborns doses of good bacteria can:
- Radically reduce the risk of developing autism or autism-like disorders
- Protect babies from developing eczema in childhood
- Help prevent childhood allergies;8
- Help optimize your baby’s weight later in life;9
- Improve the symptoms of colic, decreasing average crying times by about 75 percent;10
- reduce your risk of premature labor
The best way to ensure optimal gut flora is to regularly consume traditionally fermented foods, which are naturally rich in probiotics. This includes Lassi, kefir, sauerkraut and other fermented veggies, natto, kim chee, and tempeh. A high-quality probiotic supplement is also an option, especially if you don’t eat many fermented foods.
Vitamin D: I’ve included vitamin D here even though your main source of it should be from the sun, not from food. Along with reducing your risk of premature birth, studies have found that vitamin D may protect against a number of birth defects and autism, as well as pregnancy complications like high blood pressure. It is absolutely imperative that pregnant women maintain a blood level of between 50 and 70 ng/ml of 25 hydroxy D, and I am hopeful that in the not too distant future it will be mandatory for pregnant women to receive regular vitamin D blood test levels.
Vitamin B12: Vitamin B12 is one of the eight B complex vitamins and is naturally present in foods that come from animals, including meat, fish, eggs, milk and milk products. B12 is critical for normal neurological development and maintenance, and shortages can result in permanent birth defects. Note: If you eat a vegan diet, you are likely to be dangerously deficient in vitamin B12.
Folate in the form of Metafolate: Another B-complex vitamin (vitamin B9), folic acid deficiency at the time of conception is known to increase the risk for birth defects such as spina bifida. Many women are aware of this and take folic acid supplements in their prenatal vitamins, but many are not aware that in order for folic acid to perform its crucial duties in your body, and for your fetus, it must first be activated into the biologically active form – L-5-MTHF. This is the form that’s most usable by your body and the form that’s able to cross the blood-brain barrier to carry out important brain functions. Nearly half of the population has difficulty converting folic acid to the bioactive 5-MTHF form because of a genetic reduction in enzyme activity, so it’s important to look for metafolate or metafolin in your multi-vitamin instead of folic acid.
Be sure to read the label closely, as many companies don’t use the bioactive form because it is too expensive and about 10 times more costly. Of course, even better than a supplement would be a wide variety of healthy, fresh, organically grown vegetables, which will supply not only folic acid in the correct form but all the other important accessory micronutrients.
Animal-Based Omega-3 Fats: Most women have major deficiencies of animal-based omega-3 fat like EPA and DHA, which is unfortunate because fetal cells cannot form omega-3 fats, meaning a fetus must obtain all of its omega-3 fatty acids from mother’s diet. A mother’s dietary intake and plasma concentrations of DHA directly influence the DHA status of the developing fetus.
DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) is so essential to a child’s development that if a mother and infant are deficient in it, the child’s nervous system and immune system may never fully develop, and it can cause a lifetime of unexplained emotional, learning, and immune system disorders. DHA makes up 15 percent to 20 percent of the cerebral cortex and 30 percent to 60 percent of the retina so it is absolutely necessary for normal development of the fetus in utero, and as a baby post birth.
Studies have shown that sufficient levels of omega-3 fats optimize brain growth in children, especially during the third trimester. But because the fetus depends on the mother’s DHA sources, the constant drain on a mother’s DHA reserves can easily lead to a deficiency and some researchers believe that preeclampsia (pregnancy-related high blood pressure) and postpartum depression could be linked to a DHA deficiency. The DHA in animal-based omega-3 fats will also help to prevent the vast majority of premature deliveries.
If You’re NOT Pregnant, Keep These Coffee Drinking Tips in Mind
Getting back to coffee, I believe there are ways to include coffee in a healthy lifestyle, provided you’re not using it as a crutch to mask symptoms of a poor diet, resulting in flagging energy levels—and provided you’re not pregnant. To learn more, see this previous article on the health benefits of coffee. That said, another major caveat to coffee drinking is quality. You can find a great deal of information at Coffee & Conservation.11 Here are five primary considerations to follow if you want to use coffee for its therapeutic benefits:
- Choose Organic: Coffee beans are one of the most heavily sprayed crops. So, you should select only coffee beans that are certified organic and hence grown without pesticides. This is important, as you will obliterate ANY positive effects if you consume coffee that’s been doused in pesticides or other chemicals. Whenever possible, purchase sustainable “shade-grown” coffee to help prevent the continued destruction of our tropical rain forests and the birds that inhabit them. There are many who say shade grown coffee tastes better as well.
- Whole Bean: You’ll want to purchase whole bean coffee that smells and tastes fresh, not stale; if your coffee does not have a pleasant aroma, it is likely rancid. Grind it yourself to prevent rancidity as pre-ground coffee may be rancid by the time you get it home.
- Drink It Black: If you’re interested in the health benefits, drink your coffee black, without sugar or cream or flavorings. Add sugar and you’ll certainly ruin any of the benefits by spiking your insulin levels, which contributes to insulin resistance. Make sure the water you’re using is pure.
- Coffee Filters: If you use a “drip” coffee maker, be sure to use non-bleached filters. The bright white ones are chlorine-bleached, and some of this chlorine will leach from the filter during the brewing process. Bleached filters are also notoriously full of dangerous disinfection byproducts, such as dioxin.
- Coffee Mugs: Be careful about the container you use. Avoid plastic cups as the BPA will leach into your drink. Styrofoam cups can also leach chemicals. Your best bets include glass and ceramic travel mugs.
Again, remember that while coffee has the potential to be used therapeutically, you need to view it as both a drug and a whole food. As other drugs, caffeine can have a potent impact and should be respected and used with caution. As a whole food, it needs to fulfill certain criteria. Much of the commercial coffee available can be likened to “junk food” in that it’s loaded with pesticide residues and otherwise of poor quality…
The most important caveat is to avoid coffee and other sources of caffeine during pregnancy. There are far too many contraindications during this time and plenty of evidence that it can cause long-term harm. If you feel like you cannot drag yourself into work without one or more cups of coffee, you may want to address your diet and exercise, which is at the root of your fatigue. If you’re supplying your body with the nutrients it needs, you simply won’t need the extra energy boost.
Getting The Flu While Pregnant
By Personalized Women’s Healthcare | Monday, February 17th, 2014
Getting the flu while pregnant should not be taken lightly. Being pregnant you are more susceptible to contracting the influenza (flu) virus than when your not. The flu season lasts from around September through March on average. Protect yourself and your household, but more importantly protect your unborn child. Watch this video.
What Is The Best Way To Get Pregnant?
By Personalized Women’s Healthcare | Thursday, May 30th, 2013
Ideally, try to time sex to occur when you are ovulating. When is this? If you have a 28-day cycle, it is usually around day 12-16. If you are unsure, you can buy and over the counter ovulation kit for better accuracy. It is also better to have sex once every other day around your ovulation time, rather than to have sex numerous times on one day only.
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