Micronutrients

Calcium, vitamin D, magnesium, iron, and folic acid are frequently consumed in inadequate amounts in pregnancy [39]. The fetus requires calcium throughout pregnancy, which is mostly deposited in the skeletal tissues in the third trimester. Vitamin D is required for calcium absorption and deposition in the fetal skeleton. Women with inadequate vitamin D intakes or limited sunlight exposure are at risk for vitamin D deficiency, increasing the risk of neonatal rickets. Magnesium deficiency may be associated with preeclampsia [40]. A low dose supplementation of 30 mg iron/day is recommended beginning in the second trimester. Folate is necessary for DNA synthesis and maternal and fetal cell proliferation. Folate deficiency is associated with maternal megaloblastic anemia, neural tube defects, spontaneous abortions, and low birth weight [41]. Folic acid supplementation should begin prior to conception and continue throughout pregnancy.

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