According to an expert on dietary fats and oils, pregnant and nursing women must maintain diets rich in essential fatty acids to help avoid certain emotional and physical health problems for themselves and their babies.
Dr. Udo Erasmus says women with insufficient dietary intake of the essential fat Omega 3 are likely to experience depression, mood swings, and increased susceptibility to certain degenerative diseases. He also says babies of fat-deprived mothers are prone to be less alert and inquisitive.
"The developing foetus literally sucks essential fats out of the mother's body because these fats are so vital for its brain development," says Dr. Erasmus. "Research suggests this depletion of the mother's essential fats is a main reason why women get postpartum depression, and why more women than men suffer from depression, lupus, multiple sclerosis, and fibromyalia," he says.
Dr. Erasmus says demands for the mother's essential fatty acids by the foetus and breastfed newborn can cause a reduction in the mother's brain size.
"A mother's brain, which is 60 per cent fat, can literally shrink 3 per cent each time she has a child unless she intakes essential fats sufficient for the needs of herself and her baby," he says.
"Mothers and mothers-to-be can easily supplement their diets with seed oils, which are the richest source of essential fats," says Dr. Erasmus.
Dr. Erasmus recommends one to two daily tablespoons of a "perfected" oil blend made from flax, sunflower, and sesame seeds. "Perfected" oils contain the Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids in a ratio most optimum for human health.
"Women will see an elevation of mood, energy level, and overall health," he says.