Riboflavin– vitamin B2– helps us produce energy, it’s good for your eyes, skin and promotes growth. Pregnant and nursing women need a little more riboflavin than the rest of us; it helps with our cellular functioning and vitamin absorption and also helps build the baby’s bones, muscles and and nerves.
It doesn’t store in your body like some other vitamins, so you need to be getting plenty on a regular bases. Luckily it’s super easy to get into your diet.
Prenatal vitamins contain the daily recommended allowance of riboflavin however it’s best absorbed through your diet.
Here are some excellent sources of riboflavin: almonds, whole grains, leafy greens, eggs, cheese, brewer’s yeast, wheat germ, wild rice, soybeans, mushrooms, yogurt, milk and nori. It should be pretty easy to get some of this into a pregnancy diet. There’s lots of riboflavin in cereal which pregnant women often crave.
Deficiency of vitamin B2 riboflavin affects the cellular processes running in the body. Signs of deficiency include irritated, sensitive or bloodshot eyes, sore lips or tongue or an infection of the mouth. Pregnant women who test for very low levels of riboflavin might be at increased risk for preeclampsia.
Women who eat well and/or take a supplement are not going to get deficient. But as the winter drags on stories about perking up with vitamins spring up everywhere. What we all probably need is some sunshine and a nice, long walk.
photo: Ms Tea/Flickr