StorkNetFamily.com
StorkNet.com
    

Channels
• Family Planning
• Pregnancy
• Parenting
• Family Life
• For Fun
• Experts
• Shopping
• Site Information
• Tools

Tools
• Baby Names Database
• Pregnancy Glossary
• Bedrest Survival Guide
• BBT Chart
• BMI Calculator
• Daily Parenting
   Affirmations

• Due Date Calculator
• Morning Sickness
   Journal

• Nutrition for Two
• Pregnancy Planner
• Week By Week
   Pregnancy Guide

 

StorkNet presents . . .
Nurture Mom

StorkNet.com > Columns > Nurture Mom

Fats that Are Good for a Mother
© Rick Hanson, Ph.D., and Jan Hanson, L.Ac.

I always thought fat was bad, but now I'm reading about "good fats." What should I do?

Essential fatty acids (EFAs) are in the news because they are needed for a healthy heart and brain, plus they are absolutely crucial for the healthy development of a fetus or child. Unfortunately, they are usually deficient in mothers since they are drawn on heavily to grow a baby during pregnancy and breast milk is loaded with them, and most women don't have anywhere near enough to start with.

Increasing your intake of one type of EFAs-omega-3 oils found in fish and flax-can help prevent cardiovascular disease, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, diabetes, and depression. It can also make your hair and skin more moist; dryness, including dandruff, is a potential sign of omega-3 deficiency. And pregnant or breastfeeding women can help the optimal development of their child's brain by getting optimal amounts of these important oils.

Here's how to get the good fats you need:

  • Do not use refined oils.

  • Make virgin olive oil your everyday oil.

  • Minimize your use of safflower, sunflower, soybean, and sesame oils.

  • Avoid trans-fatty acids. These are found in deep-fried foods, and in the hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated fats used in margarine, and in most baked or packaged foods.

  • Increase your intake of a vital type of EFA's - omega-3's:
    • Eat omega-3 rich fish (salmon, mackerel, trout, or sardines); but try to consume no more than 2 servings a week, to avoid getting too much of the mercury, alas, and is increasingly found in fish at the top of the food chain.

    • Take a fish oil supplement that indicates on the label that it has been "molecularly distilled" for purity. Take enough to get about 500 milligrams/day of a key ingredient called DHA. Some people can tolerate taking the oil in a spoonful, but most people will want to spend a little more and get it in capsules.

    • Some people prefer flax oil to fish oil due to being a vegetarian. Unfortunately, many people lack some of the enzymes or co-factors needed to convert flax oil into the long-chain fatty acids your body needs, which already exist in fish oil. If you do choose to use flax oil, make sure you're taking a good multi-vitamin/multi-mineral supplement as well, for the co-factors it contains.)

    • Use a gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) supplement if you have symptoms that suggest a deficiency, such as premenstrual tension, eczema, or arthritis. You can find GLA in supplements of primrose, borage, or black currant oil. Daily suggested doses are given on the labels.
    With these small steps, you'll be supporting your health and well-being every day!

    About the Authors:
    Rick Hanson, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist, Jan Hanson, MS, LAc, is an acupuncturist/nutritionist, and they are raising a daughter and son, ages 15 and 18. With Ricki Pollycove, MD, they are the first and second authors of Mother Nature: A Nother's Guide to Health in Body, Mind, and Intimate Relationships, published by Penguin. You can see their website at www.nurturemom.com or email them with questions or comments at info@nurturemom.com; unfortunately, a personal reply may not always be possible.

    If you like this article, we'd be honored if you shared it using the button below.
    Bookmark and Share

    ADVERTISEMENT


  • facebook
    Bookmark and Share


    Copyright © 1996-2016 StorkNetFamily.com. All rights reserved.
    Please read our Disclaimer and Privacy Policy.
    Site Info | Writers Info | Advertising Information | Contact Us | Link to Us

     
    Please visit the sites of the StorkNetFamily.com Network:
    Pregnancy Week By Week | Exploring Womanhood | Books for Families | EriChad Grief Support Sites