Getting Enough Iron During Pregnancy

Hi Sue,

I have just found out the wonderful news today that my sister is pregnant! I am concerned though because she doesn't eat red meat. She does eat chicken, but what sort of diet should she follow to maintain her iron intake?

Thanks a lot!!

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ABOUT THE EXPERT

Sue Gilbert

Sue Gilbert works as a consulting nutritionist. For many years she worked with Earth's Best Organic Baby Food, integrating nutrition and... Read more

Dear Lisa,
Great news! You will have a new niece or nephew in the near future. You are right to identify iron as a critical nutrient during pregnancy. However, even pregnant women who do consume red meat probably don't get enough of that mineral. An iron supplement is recommended during pregnancy since it is so difficult to get enough in your diet. The National Academy of Science recommends pregnant women take a supplement containing 30 mg. of iron a day during the 2nd and 3rd trimester. Most of this iron is needed during the last 3 months because that is when baby is accumulating it for use during early life. Moms also need this extra iron to replenish their red blood supply and to accommodate the demand created by increased blood volume.

Thank you for writing.

Sincerely,
Sue Gilbert

 

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