Quiz 14: Nutrition During Pregnancy and Breastfeeding


Fertility is the ability to reproduce and give birth to an offspring. Vitamin E deficiency causes sterility in lower mammals but it does not have much effect on humans. Fertility is linked with many nutritional supplements. For example, Iron and zinc are two nutrients that have effect on fertility. These are important for the normal ovulation in females. But it is not much linked with fertility. Consuming low-carbohydrate helps to live healthily in diabetes condition and to maintain weight but it does not have any direct effect on fertility. Hence the option (a), (c), and (d) are incorrect. Energy balance is more important for the reproduction. Negative energy balance cannot maintain the reproductive system, while positive energy balance maintains the fertility. The prolonged positive energy balance may also lead to infertility due to increased adipose tissue and fat. Hence the correct answer is option (b).

Fertility is the ability to reproduce and give birth to an offspring. This is linked with many nutritional supplements. The balanced diet is the diet, which contains all the five nutrients such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, minerals, and vitamins. Couple trying to conceive should practice the following nutrition: • There are many nutrients that help to improve fertility but the most important and foremost nutrient is folic acid. This is involved in DNA synthesis and metabolism of homocysteine. Thus, it prevents birth defects of brain and spinal cord.• Iron and zinc are two other nutrients that have effect on fertility. These are important for the normal ovulation in females and increase sperm count in males. • Vitamins E, C, selenium have the ability to improve fertility by preventing excess free radicals. • Decreased dietary fat and alcohol. The alcohol is toxic and has a negative impact on child's development.

Due to the demands for nourishment of the fetus in the body of the mother, the requirements for several nutrients increase significantly during pregnancy. One of the ingredients whose requirement increases prominently is carbohydrates. FDA recommends an increase in the carbohydrate intake to 125 grams per day. This is attributed to a specific reason. Nausea during pregnancy is normal if it does not persist for long. Abnormal nausea which persists for long during pregnancy, is treated with medications such as serotonin blockers and not carbohydrates. Increasing carbohydrates during pregnancy-induce hyperemia will cause an abrupt increase in the blood sugar levels leading to the secretion of insulin and leptin, which tend to increase the blood pressure, thereby aggravating the situation, not alleviating it. Folate is the micronutrient, Vitamin B9. It can be provided by nutrient rich sources of vitamin B9 such as leafy green vegetables and fruits like lemons, bananas, and melons. Giving carbohydrates will not provide folate to the body. Hence, options-b, c, and d are incorrect. When the mother is not having adequate carbohydrates, her body seeks energy from other sources such as fat. This results into by-products such as keto-acids. Excess keto-acids cause ketosis in the blood. The fetus which relies on the mother's blood for energy cannot metabolize the keto-products to generate energy. Poor utilization of the ketone bodies by the fetal brain is also linked to poor brain development in infants. Increased carbohydrate needs are set to prevent ketosis in the infants. Hence, the correct option is the option img