This can be a really challenging discussion, to be faced with the reality that our health impacts our children’s health can flick that “guilt” switch immediately. But it’s not about that. It’s about becoming empowered to face the truth, take responsibility and the action required to do something about it. The silver lining is that we CAN do something to not only improve our children’s health with the right nutrition and lifestyle intervention, but we can in fact prevent the need to even face dis-ease by optimising our health prior to conception AND during pregnancy!
“Our children’s health depends on us!”
Prior to my focus on child health I specialised in preconception, pregnancy and fertility care and saw first hand the results of the effort so many proactive parents had on their baby’s health. These babies quite simply outshone their counterparts in health, happiness and intellect. In fact it is now professionally recognised that birth defects and child health issues are largely the result of parental health. Before you freak out, of course it’s common sense, our kids are a product of us and can only be a good (or bad) as us BUT this is within our control.
This fact was well understood historically. There is a range of evidence showing the preferential “food” treatment of pregnant women, with the most nutritious food being allocated to them over other members of the community. Dr Weston A Price uncovered this hidden wisdom in his research in the early 1900’s. Along side Dr Price were the findings of Francis Pottenger whose famous “cat study” highlighted the generational impact of the “wrong” kinds of foods being consumed for cats. This study showed that with each generation healthy diminished and in fact diminished in a single life with the wrong food. Extinction is the end result for a species that continues to eat the wrong foods and engage in practices that are inconsistent with their physiology. Naturally this is the same for humans, as generations progress who are existing on modern foods, disease also progresses. Disease, however, is arrested when appropriate foods are consumed. (Read more about their work here).
In fact the World Health Organisation has a designated preconception care program. They state that “Preconception care has a positive effect on a range of health outcomes. Among others, preconception care can”:
• reduce maternal and child mortality
• prevent unintended pregnancies
• prevent complications during pregnancy and delivery
• prevent stillbirths, preterm birth and low birth weight
• prevent birth defects
• prevent neonatal infections
• prevent underweight and stunting
• prevent vertical transmission of HIV/STIs
• lower the risk of some forms of childhood cancers
• lower the risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease later in life
This information would be useful to know well before the idea to make babies even occurs. We have control of our own health and the responsibility for our children’s!
I have seen the impact of improved nutrition time and again in clinic for a diverse range of health issues from autism, ADD/ADHD, immune dysfunction, gut issues, anxiety, depression, constipation and so much more. When the diet is altered to support healing, healing is the very thing that can happen.
Imagine a situation where health issues are prevented because health and nutrition are addressed prior to conception and/or during pregnancy. Well I am hypothesising here but research is suggesting that a wide variety of health issues can be averted with the right nutrition in the preconception and pregnancy phase. Wow! This would change things significantly. The enjoyment of being parents can be truly experienced without the worry of a sick child. The impact of disease for families would be reduced. Health care costs would be reduced. Time would be saved! The list of benefits is virtually endless….
If you know anyone who is pregnant, I am excited to announce a new workshop series in conjunction with Dr Sarah Moore, “Ultimate Health for Preconception, Pregnancy, Birth & Beyond”. The first event will be held at the Dunsborough Community centre on July 31st. Contact Sally at firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
The kind of approach needed is to restore the best of health prior to conception so as not to pass on imbalances and deficiences. The next best thing is to clean up the diet during pregnancy and begin by feeding baby nutritious foods, not the packaged cereal our misguided child health nurses recommend. Below are 2 great links for information but if the one thing you remember is “only consume wholefoods with an emphasis on healthy meats, vegetables, fruit, protein, water, properly prepared legumes, nuts and seeds” then those are great guidelines to follow.
In addition to an incredible diet, I personally recommend some quality supplementation to amplify the nutrition that the growing baby receives. I see this as necessary because current generations have typically eaten so poorly, relying on convenient, processed and packaged foods which has impacted our own health whether you feel it or not! I suggest the organic wholefood supplements from Garden of Life, eg Pregnancy Multi, as well as Fulvic Minerals from Optimally Organic, Organic Acerola powder, Probiotics such as Custom Probiotic 11 or Dr Mercola’s own, Ratfish or Cod Liver Oil from Dr Rositas.
Our children’s health depends on us!