Omega 3 Rich Foods and Pregnancy

We all know how important a good diet is in maintaining a healthy pregnancy. After all, your baby relies on you for the vitamins, nutrients, and calories he needs throughout his development. A good pregnancy diet is well-balanced and addresses you and your baby’s specific needs. Omega 3 rich foods are particularly essential. Omega 3 foods can provide your baby with the energy and materials necessary to good physical and mental growth. Omega-3s are also important for your own health and well-being during pregnancy.

How Important Is Omega 3 in Pregnancy?

What are Omega 3s?
Omega 3s are a type of polyunsaturated fatty acids. They are found in various foods, including fish, game, seeds, and plants. Polyunsaturated fatty acids are one of four types of fats you’re your body gets through your food. Though Omega 3s are called "fatty acids," they are actually very good for you and are a necessary component for both mental and physical health. Omega 3 fatty acids are often referred to as essential fatty acids. This is because they cannot be produced by your own body, but instead need to be gotten through essential foods.

Types of Omega 3s
There are three main types of Omega 3 essential fatty acids. Your body can use all three of these Omega 3s to help perform different functions.

 

  • Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA): EPA is found primarily in fish and fish oil.
  • Docosahexanoic Acid (DHA): DHA is especially important to your body, and is also found primarily in fish.
  • Alpha-Linolenic Acid (ALA): ALA is found mostly in seeds, vegetable oils, and leafy green vegetables. It is converted into EPA and then into DHA in your body.

Omega 3 During Pregnancy
In the past decade or so, the importance of Omega 3 during pregnancy has been acknowledged. It is now known that Omega 3 actually plays a large role in the development and growth of your baby when it is in your uterus. Omega 3 helps to:

 

  • build the brain
  • form the retinas
  • develop the nervous system

 

Omega 3 is also necessary for your own pregnancy health and wellbeing. Omega 3 helps to:

Omega 3 Deficiency During Pregnancy
Having an Omega 3 deficiency while you are pregnant can prove very harmful to you and your baby. Your baby takes Omega 3 from the foods that you eat. The nutrients cross the placenta, helping your baby to grow and develop. However, if your baby does not get enough Omega-3 from the food you eat, he will begin to take it from your own stores. Researchers believe that these stores may be located in the brain, which can result in a loss of up to 3% of your brain cells.

Omega 3 deficiency during pregnancy is linked with:

 

Table of Contents
1. Omega 3s and Pregnancy
2. Omega 3 and baby's brain
 
 
Login to comment
(2 Comments)

Post a comment

Gloriani
Two words: Chia seeds!!!
3 years ago
julie.z
i'm always so thankful for these articles that don't just tell you what kinds of vitamins and thing you need and what they do for your body but that also tell you which foods have these vitamins. i can't believe how often other sites forget to tell you how to get the right vitamins. thanks pregnancy-info! i was nice to know how easy it is to get omega 3--sardines, eggs, juice, green veggies, easy. anyone can eat these things.
4 years ago