Pregnancy and its preparation are privileged moments to take care of the health. Everything you're going to do before and while you're pregnant will have a direct impact on the family life you're going to live afterwards.
It is an ideal time to take new eating habits and lifestyles if you hadn’t done so before.
Pregnancy and nutrient requirements
Creating a baby is a little like a recipe. When all ingredients are blended with taste, the newborn will have a great chance to start well its coming to the world.
But if you only cook with nine of the twelve ingredients, forgetting to put spices and enthusiasm, the final result may not be as tasteful or elaborate as expected.
This example can therefore in some way be transposed to pregnancy: when some nutrients are missing, for example the essential vitamins of the B group, such as B9, this can lead to major physical disorders for the child but also cause emotional disturbances for the mother before and after birth.
In order to prevent any deficiency, it is essential to stock up on vitamins and minerals throughout these nine months.
Often, gynaecologists or general practitioners believe that modern food and multi-vitamic complexes sold in pharmacy are sufficient to overcome possible deficiencies. As a naturopath, we often observe that these basic supplements are absolutely not enough to recharge the body in essential elements for the health of the future baby and especially of the mother who often demineralizes itself for the benefit of the child who will always draw the nutrients he needs during pregnancy and then breastfeeding.
One of the signs of a lack of vitamins and minerals is, for example, the famous cravings of pregnant women. Indeed, they reflect a demand (or sometimes even a desperate cry) of the body to get the doses of basic nutrients. But, unfortunately, our modern diet, even organic, is deprived of vitamins, minerals, trace elements and quality fatty acids. So we get calories, but do not recharge our essential needs for each of our bites.
Multivitamin complexes sold in pharmacy are interesting and can be a good base. However, there are often doubtful additives, such as titanium dioxide and some dietary supplements of this type are of poor quality and/or derived from synthetic molecules, so not always assimilated optimally for the body.
According to a naturopathic or natural and holistic health point of view, superfoods are the best allies during this precious period, as throughout our life.
What is a superfood and which ones are to be preferred during pregnancy?
A superfood, is a product or food with an important nutrient value, which means it is naturally very rich in amino acids, vitamins, minerals, trace elements and enzymes.
The advantage of consuming this kind of product is that the body does not need to make any effort to assimilate what it requires and eliminate what is in excess, unlike synthetic products. It is therefore the golden path to take care of our health, prevent deficiencies and balance our nutritional needs.
Today we will present you three treasures rich in nutrients, especially adapted to pregnancy: spirulina, pollen and marine plasma.
Spirulina is an ancient freshwater seaweed, already consumed for its virtues in Aztec times.
Rich in amino acids (protein), antioxidants (including phycocyanin), chlorophyll, B and E vitamin groups, iron, calcium, magnesium: it is a true nutrient bomb for any age.
Its positive health effects are diverse and remarkable.
Indeed the spirulina:
- boosts immunity
- increases physical performance and improves mental vigilance
- fight against free radicals and thus against cell degeneration
- reduces inflammation
- prevents cardiovascular diseases by regulating triglycerides, and cholesterolemic balance
- fight and prevent anemia
- regulates blood glucose
- harmonizes blood pressure
- prevents food deficiencies, due to excessively industrial or refined food or because of special needs or diets
As part of pregnancy, spirulina therefore brings vitamins and minerals (B12 and iron in particular but also magnesium, calcium, C and E vitamins) essential in addition to a balanced diet.
In some countries, this blue seaweed is even used to combat malnutrition related to poor living conditions. Three spirulina cures are often enough for malnourished children to catch up with their deficiencies.
However, its nutrient content varies depending on its place of cultivation and mode of production (drying temperature, compression, etc.), so it is strongly recommended to consume this superfood by focusing on qualitative sources such as the spirulina of Biovie.
Algae also accumulate heavy metals such as lead, arsenic and cadmium, when the culture environment is polluted, another reason to pay attention to its origin.
It is a pile of tiny ovoidal seeds, which is the male fertile element of flowers. Bees and other pollinating insects transport the pollen to the female organ (pistil) of other flowers and thus, enable the reproduction of different plant species.
This pollen, mixed with nectar, also serves as a food for the bees colony and especially for young larvae during the flowering period.
When we talk about pollen as superfood, we need to know how to differentiate between two types: dry and fresh. Both are rich in amino acids, carbohydrates, minerals (calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, etc.), vitamins of B group and antioxidants. However, these qualities are better preserved and more powerful in the fresh version. The presence of lactic ferments and enzymes is also maintained, which is not the case in the usual dried pollen.
This global fortifier has many properties:
- increases immunity
- fight fatigue
- restores recovery periods
- strengthens memory
- acts on the beauty of the skin appendages (nails and hair)
- rebalance the nervous system
It also enables to smoothly regulate intestinal peristalsis, which is very advantageous during pregnancy because it is slowed down. Indeed, the weight of the baby sometimes compresses certain organs and slows down the natural evacuation of the stools. It is essential to restore transit as quickly as possible, because the stagnant waste in the colon is a few centimetres from the fetus and can therefore intoxicate it over the weeks.
The pollen from the hive is not to be confused with the pollen transported by the wind that sometimes causes allergies. On the contrary, it even reduces the symptoms of allergic rhinitis, due to its anti-inflammatory and anti-histamine action.
Good to know: you can also dissolve some quality pollen in the bottles of milk or water, so that the child can enjoy the benefits of the pollen from the earliest age. Always consult your pediatrician or specialist to validate that it is suitable for your child.
- Marine plasma
Marine plasma is also called sea water or Quinton serum. Its name comes from the French biologist René Quinton, because he dedicates many years of his life to the scientific and therapeutic study of sea water.
This serum, harvested in well-defined areas, i.e. in marine vortex (whirlpools), contains more than 80 highly bio-available traces of the Mendeleev's table. It has the characteristic of being almost identical to the blood plasma. It is interesting to know that former nurses injected this marine plasma into the patient's veins, in order to give them a boost in health. It was reimbursed in France by the social security system until the 1980s.
This sea water, so rich in nutrients, contributes greatly to the good health of the mother and baby. It reduces nausea, the decrease in blood pressure, hypoglycemia and facilitates difficult pregnancies by reducing the risk of miscarriage and strengthening the development of the fetus. Even genetic malformations and complications can be improved thanks to this real elixir of life.
It is recommended to gradually increase doses of sea water starting with 30ml per day during the first quarter to end with 100ml per day in the third quarter and the first months of life of the child.
Marine plasma must be taken out of meals in a glass of isotonic water during pregnancy. The ideal is to keep it for a few seconds in your palace, so that the trace elements can penetrate the sublingual capillaries.
Because it is a water rich in salt, it is important to check the blood pressure throughout its dose, especially during the last quarter of pregnancy.
Marine plasma is also ideal during breastfeeding. You can continue to provide your baby with its benefits through breast milk and later, diluting it with suitable water in its bottle or cup.
the marine plasma Ibiza Y Formentera is of exceptional quality, because it is harvested in seabeds with the best concentration in phytoplankton and by respecting the biorythms of the earth. It is also one of the few companies extracting this nature's treasure still on the shore of a boat in the middle of the sea.
Health and natural elements as blessings
There are also other superfoods that can be taken throughout the pregnancy, such as sprouted seeds (well washed), royal jelly or coconut water.
Nature offers solutions and blessings within the reach of all, thus, a support, adapted to each woman and every pregnancy, can be very constructive in addition to the usual medical monitoring. We invite you to contact a naturopath and/or a natural health practitioner (doula, haptonomy, hypnobirthing, osteopath, etc.). in order to live at best this important period.
Justine Lamboley is naturopath and heilpraktiker. It is the author of the accompanying program to the preparation and pregnancy, up to the birth of your child called “natural pregnancy”, which enables you to have a natural pregnancy in great shape, and prepare you for physiological birth.