The Need For DHA Essential Fatty Acid In Pregnant and Lactating Women

My husband and I often talk and evaluate how we are raising our children. We reminisce on our own upbringing, often reflecting on what were are doing differently than our parents. What we have come to understand is a balanced perspective is always the best, when it comes to parenting. This principle is so applicable in many different venues.

There can be a tendency to go the extreme opposite when a negative result is experienced, in this case, fats have been continually ingrained in our psyche as the cause of heart disease, or excessive weight gain. When  reality is, certain fats, specifically, those that have been altered chemically, are the fats we need to go "cold-turkey" on.

Read my article: Are Hydrogenated Fats Giving Fats A Bad Name? 

This becomes a problem, health wise, as we miss out on essential fats that our bodies need to be at it's best operating capacity. EFA - Essential Fatty Acids, specifically Omega-3 DHA is not produced by the body and must be supplemented in our diets. When our food becomes so industrialized, finding a natural source to supply this need becomes vital, especially so for gestating and lactating mothers. Did you know, that pregnant women in the US have the third lowest levels of DHA in the world? It speaks to the sad state of affairs of what we consider to be "food".


DHA (Docosahexaenoic) is the primary essential fatty acid in the gray matter of the brain, so it makes perfect sense that pregnant and breast feeding moms need to ensure they keep their levels of DHA up. DHA assists in these very important functions:

  • Proper development of the eyes, brain and nervous system
  • Promotes mood and nerve support
  • Supports healthy immune system development
  • Used to make breast milk


Fish oil is considered to the best source of DHA . Unfortunately, fish too, has a bad rap. Moms with babies to nurture, shy away from fish, in legitimate concern for high levels of mercury and other toxic substances. The good news is, fish oil can safely be consumed, if we adopt a balanced perspective that will allow us to incorporate the good, while getting rid of the bad. It's important to understand that not all fish oil supplements are created equal. 


Stuart Tomc, CNHP, the National Educator for Nordic Naturals says...

"Any responsible fish oil manufacturer will commission and independent testing organization that does not benefit financially from the test results to test their product."

The results of third-party testing should be visible and available to consumers and consist of these guidelines as directed by Stuart Tomc:
  • Purity - ensures safety
  • Freshness - for efficacy (oils should not smell or taste fishy, which is indicative of rancidity)
  • Dosage - Higher quality oils will be more concentrated, thus less is needed
  • Sustainable Fishing Practices - transparency in fishing practices

Nordic Naturals has come out on top when it comes to the quality of their products. With a bevy of awards to showcase their dedication to customers, they are the official omega-3 fish oil of the American Pregnancy Association. They meet all of the guidelines listed above, and more. They are easily considered  a leader in fish oil supplementation. 

I am thrilled to be working with a company that is dedicated the safety and well-being of humanity. In a few days, TheOliveParent will be giving away one bottle of Prenatal DHA , the official omega-3 fish oil supplement of the American Pregnancy Association to a nursing or pregnant mom. Take a moment and sign up for my mailing don't want to miss the announcement of this important giveaway, and discover more about this dedicated company. Update: The giveaway is now open. Ends 12/10


For the month of December (12/1 ~ 12/31), you can purchase Prenatal DHA for 15% off the regular price. Use the promo code: OLIVE when making your purchase at the shopping cart.


Disclaimer: This post is written on an informative basis, and is not designed to diagnose, or treat EFA/DHA deficiency. The reader assumes full responsibility in following up the information presented here with personal research. This is not a sponsored post. 


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