Katherine Kunstel

Summary Women are among the fastest growing populations of those infected with HIV and AIDS, and most infected women are of childbearing age. Women who are both HIV-positive and pregnant are faced with a double burden both in terms of immunity and nutrition. The HIV-infected pregnant woman is at increased nutritional risk compared to the HIV-uninfected pregnant woman. HIV-infected pregnant women tend to gain less weight during pregnancy. Macronutrient needs are increased to cover the increased demands of both HIV infection and pregnancy and inadequate intake is common. Micro-nutrient deficiencies are also common in HIV-infected pregnant women and can have adverse outcomes for both the mother and the developing child. Other nutrition-related considerations for this population include symptom management, the consequences of antiretroviral therapy, risk of transmission of the virus through breastfeeding, food safety, and food security.

Nutrition assessment and counseling is a critical component of the overall care plan for HIV-infected pregnant women. Counseling regarding weight gain, adequate nutrient intake, management of HIV-related symptoms, drug-nutrient interactions, and the risks associated with breastfeeding should be made available to all HIV-infected pregnant women. The nutrition care plan must aim to promote the best outcomes for both the mother and the developing child.

Keywords: Nutrition, Pregnancy, HIV, AIDS, Maternal health, Breastfeeding, Pregnancy outcomes

New Mothers Guide to Breast Feeding

New Mothers Guide to Breast Feeding

For many years, scientists have been playing out the ingredients that make breast milk the perfect food for babies. They've discovered to day over 200 close compounds to fight infection, help the immune system mature, aid in digestion, and support brain growth - nature made properties that science simply cannot copy. The important long term benefits of breast feeding include reduced risk of asthma, allergies, obesity, and some forms of childhood cancer. The more that scientists continue to learn, the better breast milk looks.

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