About The Health of It All....

This is an index of the health notes included in recipes. These short tidbits of information can help answer questions on everything from Omega-3 Fats in fish to whether to cook chicken with the skin on or not. Want to know about garlic and cholesterol? Is it okay to eat eggs or not? It's all here.


The Health of It All

Folic Acid Requirements

It is now well established that folic acid, also known as folate, is essential for production of blood cells and for developing fetuses.

You can find folate in high amounts in legumes like chickpeas, but also in wheat bran, liver, almost all kinds of beans, greens like spinach, and my favorite, asparagus. Other good sources include lean meats, some nuts, dairy products and almost all fruits.

The U.S. government now requires cold cereals and baking flour to be fortified with folic acid. Interestingly, the synthetic forms are much better absorbed than the natural forms, so these new fortified foods may be even better for you. It is now recommended that women of child-bearing age take a supplement every day. Here's a list of Amounts of Folic Acid in Common Foods (PDF). Read More "The Health of It All..." Articles

More About Folic Acid

Folic acid in pregnancy and language development
Adequate folic acid, a B vitamin, can reduce the risk of birth defects such as spina bifida and other neural tube birth defects. The concept that women should have adequate folate pre-conception and in the first weeks of pregnancy was an early message in modern public health. This led to supplementation of foods such as cereals and bread in the United States. Most women who plan pregnancies are now aware of this association. Rates of neural tube defects have declined.

Female? Get Your Folic Acid Supplement
Folic acid is essential in pregnancy to prevent serious birth defects, maternal anemia, and low infant birth weight. In North America, folic acid fortification of white flour, pasta products, and other grain products has been mandatory since 1998. Still, most women of childbearing age are advised to take a folic acid supplement, either in the form of prenatal vitamins (if pregnant) or in a daily multivitamin (if not pregnant). 

There is No Substitute for a Healthy Diet
Pregnant women often ask me, "What brand of prenatal vitamins should I take?" before they ask about a healthy diet. My response is that prenatal vitamins can never replace healthy food.

What DOES that Broccoli Do for My Baby?
All of us have days when we would rather have a tall cappuccino than a spinach salad. Holding up a glass of milk and saying, "Here's to you, baby; I'm building your bones!" can be a great motivator. This article mainly includes nutrients that are challenges to a number of pregnant women. I grouped the foods by nutrient types, and if I mention foods that you don't like, use The Dr. Gourmet Diet Plan to search for another food with the same nutrient.