January is National Birth Defects Prevention Month
Every 4 ½ minutes, a baby is born with a major birth defect in the United States. They are a leading cause of death among U.S. infants, accounting for about 20% of mortality in the first year of life.
Not all birth defects can be prevented. But you can increase your chances of having a healthy baby by managing health conditions and by adopting healthy behaviors before and during pregnancy. Taking care of yourself and doing what’s best for you is also best for your baby!
Plan: 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid every day. Folic acid is a B vitamin. If a woman has enough folic acid in her body at least one month before and during pregnancy, it helps prevent major birth defects.
See a Healthcare Professional regularly about medications you are taking and any health concerns. Chose a healthy lifestyle and avoid harmful substances prior to and during pregnancy: alcohol, cigarettes, marijuana and other drugs.
Prevent infections during pregnancy. Be sure to check with the CDC if you plan to travel abroad. Be sure to wash your hands after preparing food and eating, using the bathroom, changing diapers, touching raw meat or eggs, gardening, handling pets, and being around sick people.
The NBDPN is a volunteer-based organization that addresses the issues of birth defects surveillance, research, and prevention by maintaining a national network of state and population-based birth defects programs. Their theme for January 2019 is “Best for You. Best for Baby.”
Read More: https://www.nbdpn.org/bdpm.php
Tips for shopping and cooking healthier on a budget
Always make a grocery list – Buy items you can use for more than one meal during the week. Look for weekly specials and coupons. Use them to buy ingredients to try new recipes.
Stock up on cheap pantry staples – Keep affordable, healthy staples like beans, potatoes, and oats on hand. Pair them with healthy vegetables for a satisfying meal.
Stick to the perimeter aisles in the grocery store – They are typically set up with healthier whole foods, while the inner aisles are stocked with processed foods.
Take advantage of your local farmer’s markets – The fruits and vegetables are fresher, will last a few more days and are reasonably priced.
Rely on rotisserie chicken – Not only is it economical, you can use it to make several meals during the week; chicken salad, soup, etc.
Plan simple, weeknight meals in advance!
“To ensure good health: eat lightly, breathe deeply, live moderately, cultivate cheerfulness, and maintain an interest in life.” ~William Londen