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Dtsch Med Wochenschr. 2012 Jun;137(25-26):1366-72. doi: 10.1055/s-0032-1305076. Epub 2012 Jun 12.

[Nutrition in pregnancy - Practice recommendations of the Network "Healthy Start - Young Family Network"].

[Article in German]

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Deutsche Gesellschaft für Kinder- und Jugendmedizin, Sprecher des Expertenbeirats.


Nutrition, physical activity and lifestyle in pregnancy influence maternal and child health. The "Healthy start - Young Family Network" supported by the German Government with the national action plan IN FORM developed recommendations on nutrition in pregnancy. Folic acid supplements (400 µg/day) should be started before pregnancy and continue for at least the first trimester. Iodine rich foods and salt and an iodine supplement (100-150 µg/day) are recommended. Long-chain omega-3 fatty acids should be provided with ≥ 1 weekly portion of oily sea fish, or a DHA-supplement if regular fish consumption is avoided. Vitamin D supplementation is advisable unless there is regular exposure to sunlight. Iron supplements should be used based on medical history and blood testing. Vegetarian diets with nutritional supplements can provide adequate nutrition, but counselling is recommended. In contrast, a vegan diet is inadequate and requires additional micronutrient supplementation. For risk reduction of listeriosis and toxoplasmosis, raw animal foods, soft cheeses and packed fresh salads should be avoided; fresh fruit, vegetables and salad should be washed well and consumed promptly. Pregnant women should remain physically active and perform sports with moderate intensity. They should avoid alcohol, active and passive smoking. Up to 3 daily cups of coffee are considered harmless, but energy drinks should be avoided. Childhood allergy is not reduced by avoiding certain foods in pregnancy whereas oily sea fish is recommended. Health care professions should lead parents to health-promoting lifestyles. Subjects of part 1 of the article are practice recommendations on nutrition, on energy needs, micronutrient needs and body weight/weight gain in pregnancy.

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