Are the majority of pregnant women deficient in key nutrients?

Quick news before we get into today’s insights

– in 2024 we are going on tour !!

We are being hosted at a variety of locations throughout the UK for half-day seminars for anyone who wants to learn the basics of why, how and what to integrate nutrition for better results from neuro-mechanical care.

Southampton Sat 20th Jan 9-1 PM
St James Chiropractic Clinic, Old thatched House, 219 Romsey Road, Shirely, Southampton, S016 4DT

Tickets are available here:

Please contact me with any questions regarding the seminar, not St James’ clinic.

Cardiff Friday Jan 26th 2-6PM
The Health and Wellness Hub (behind Whitchurch Chiropractic Clinic) 172 Merthyr Road, Whitchurch, Cardiff, CF14 1DL

Please contact Michelle Thomas for Cardiff event
[email protected]

All tickets are £95

We are working on seminars further north.

If you have space for seminars at clinic and can host us, we are looking at space for a minimum of 20 people. We are especially looking at areas north of London but south of Birmingham.

Not only will you come away with your mind expanded and a head full of real world results and case studies, you will also have the option to join the Core Concepts of Chiropractic Course (CCCN) minus your seminar fee.

In other news, it turns out that if you want to make a new human being, it is really nutrient intensive, who knew !!

You need more calories, more protein more fat, more vitamins and minerals.

If you are low in a nutrient, and you have reserves, then the baby will be prioritised, like calcium.

If you are eating low amounts of calcium, and or low bioavailable calcium (like vegans), then you will increase your parathyroid hormone (PTH) and mobilise calcium into the blood to make baby bones/teeth.

This is especially true during breastfeeding.

But if you do not have it, then you simply cannot give it and then the baby is low and development may be compromised.

Consider water-soluble vitamins like the B vitamins. We store these far less so we have a higher demand to consume them regularly.

Folate RDA normally is 400 mcg but in pregnancy is 600 mcg, 50% more (remember folate is used to make new cells, like babies and your red blood cells

Over the next few weeks we are going to dive into some fascinating research that will blow your mind.

Consider this recent research I came across.

This was conducted in high income countries (UK, New Zealand and Singapore) and was prospective.

They assessed their nutritional status at entry to the study (before they got pregnant) and then both groups got basic supplements containing:

Folic acid, iron, calcium, iodine and beta carotene (inactive vitamin A).

But half of them also got extra supplements with:

B2 (1.8 mg) , B6 (2.6 mg), B12 (5.2 mcg), vitamin D (400 iu) , myo-inositol, probiotics and zinc (10 mg).

The former group with basic supplements were control and the latter with the basics and extras were the intervention group.

Here is the first part of some terrifying statistics on blood levels and note they are very good that they recognise blood nutrient levels are not black and white.

There is gross deficiency but also marginal levels or what we might call suboptimal. Because just being “not deficient”, on an arbitrary number, isn’t a recipe for good health.

At inital assessement:

  • 29% were low or marginal for folate.
  • 82% low or marginal for B2 (riboflavin)
  • 9.1% B12
  • 48% vitamin D deficiency (<50 nmol/L) rising to 85% if insufficiency is included (<75 nmol/L)

Over 90% of the participants were low or marginal in at least one nutrient.

These stats alone are truly shocking: 82% of women looking to have babies are deficient or suboptimal in B2.

But what happened as they got pregnant and then started making babies?

By the late part of pregnancy:

  • B6 54% control vs 10% intervention
  • B12 (<221 pmol/L) 55% control vs 16% intervention
  • B2 (riboflavin) 92% control vs 81% intervention
  • Vit D 64 % vs 27%

Again this is shocking.

Despite being given B6, B2, B12 and Vit D, the majoroty were still deficient in B6, B2 and vit D.

How many were optimal?

We do not know, but frankly I suspect none.

​​​​​​​Let us just think for a moment about the average women in the UK.

The most popular supplement for pregnancy is Pregnacare.

Remember they gave extra stuff to the intervention group:

  • B2 (1.8 mg)
  • B6 (2.6 mg)
  • B12 (5.2 mcg)
  • Vitamin D (400 iu)
  • Myo-inositol
  • probiotics
  • zinc (10 mg).

And yet even in the group taking 1.8 mg B2, 5.2 mcg B12, 400 iu vit D they still had rates of deficiency/marginal of 81%, 16% and 27% respectively…….

And that was the intervention group !!

Check the full data

Pregnacare gives you

Which for those 3 nutrients is pretty much the same.

Thus, we can say that huge numbers of women are making babies while deficient in B2, B12 and vit D.

And that is pretty conservative.

What does that mean for babies health and development?

That is not yet 100% clear, but nothing good.

We are currently looking into creating our own multivitamin/ mineral for pregnancy to plug these nutritional gaps.