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DIET DURING PREGNANCY AND LACTATION
Good nutrition during the 38 to 40 weeks of a normal pregnancy is essential for both mother and child. In addition to her normal nutritional requirements, the pregnant woman must provide nutrients and calories for the fetus, the amniotic fluid, the placenta, and the increased blood volume and breast,uterine, and fat tissue.
Studies have shown a relationship between the mother’s diet and the health of the baby at birth. It is also thought that the woman who consumed a nutritious diet before pregnancy is more apt to bear a healthy infant than one who did not. Malnutrition of the mother is believed to causedecreased growth and mental retardation in the fetus. Low-birth-weightinfants (less than 5.5 pounds) have a higher mortality (death) rate thanthose of normal birth weight.
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