The Toxic Business of Conception and Fertility–and How to Alleviate Birth Defect Risk

Written By: Dr. Keesha Ewers

When I was pregnant with my fourth child, I was told I had been exposed to a virus that would undoubtedly cause birth defects in my unborn fetus. I was encouraged to abort her. After meditating and praying about the advice my physician had given me, I decided to take my chances and love and protect my baby, no matter what her mental and physical handicaps were to be. To everyone’s surprise, she came out with perfect health on all levels. My doctor shrugged and said I had obviously been lucky. However, I knew that the answer went beyond luck. I knew that my focus on keeping everything else in my environment and life pure was likely what tipped the scale in her favor.

Every expectant mother expects to deliver a healthy baby. However, the 85,000 chemicals permitted for commercial use in the U.S.—the vast majority of which the Environmental Protection Agency has not tested for safety—make it less than probable that every mother will get her expected outcome. Children in the United States are grown and birthed into a toxic soup.

Our Toxic Soup

Until recently it was assumed that the placenta shielded the developing fetus from most toxicants. We now know that the same umbilical cord that carries nutrients to the fetus also carries the industrial waste we are all exposed to. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has reported that the umbilical cord blood taken from 10 newborn babies contained over 200 environmental toxicants — that’s before they’ve inhaled their first breath or had their first breast milk (which is also full of the stored toxins from mom). The umbilical cord blood was found to contain polyaromatic hydrocarbons, dioxins, furans, pesticides, chemicals from flame retardants, industrial lubricants, plastics, consumer product ingredients and wastes from burning coal, gasoline, and garbage. A second follow-up study found chemicals in the cord blood of 10 infants that included lead, mercury, methylmercury, perfluorochemicals (PFCs), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and more.

Why Should We Care?

These toxicants and chemicals disrupt the hormone communication system between cells, which then affects organ development and function, mood, fertility and reproduction, and causes disease in later life. These endocrine-disruptor or estrogen-mimicking chemicals are the cause of future weight gain, obesity and diabetes, food allergies, infertility, reproductive abnormalities, reproductive system cancer, early puberty, and neurological and behavioral disorders, like ADHD.

What Can We Do to Alleviate Birth Defect Risk?

The best defense to alleviate birth defect risk is to minimize the mother’s exposure to toxins during pregnancy. The second defense is prenatal nutrition–bolstering her nutritional absorption and ability to detox these chemicals. Because I have 4 children and know I am having grandchildren (who I want to have the best shot at health possible), I have really taken this problem seriously and gone to work to formulate the best prenatal nutritional supplement I could. If you are pregnant or know someone who is, please help them tilt their fetal development to the healthy side.
prenatal completeOur Prenatal Complete Packets are designed to meet the higher nutritional needs of women who are preparing for pregnancy or are pregnant. This formula not only addresses their additional needs in a comprehensive way, but it also reflects recent research by including key nutrients in forms that optimize absorption while being gentle to the digestive tract. The research behind this formulation is meant to make sure genetic manifestation is tilted toward health rather than disease.
In addition to the necessary prenatal vitamins, this formula contains in each convenient daily packet:

  • Vitamin D, choline, and the purest form of fish oil on the market – Adequate intakes during pregnancy are critically important for healthy fetal development, particularly for fetal brain and retina, neurocognitive and neuromotor functions, and neuronal growth.
  • Methylated folate – Adequate folate nutrition before and during pregnancy supports healthy development of the brain and spinal column. 5-MTHF is the most biologically active form of folate, and data suggest that 5-MTHF supplementation increases plasma folate more effectively than folic acid.
  • B vitamins – These critical vitamins work together to support healthy energy production, healthy cell growth and cell division, and neurologic, cardiovascular, immune, dermatological, and emotional health.
  • Bioavailable, yet gentle minerals – Ferritin, iron, absorbable calcium, and trace minerals provided as amino acid chelates promote optimal utilization while being gentle to the gastrointestinal tract.
  • Antioxidants and other nutrients – Generous levels of nutrients that provide antioxidant activity and immune support address the increased physiological stress of pregnancy and promote healthy tissue maintenance and growth.

Each packet contains: 5 multivitamin/mineral capsules and 1 Omega 3 soft gel.

Here’s to our future healthy generations of beautiful children!

Originally posted on drkeesha.com

Dr. Keesha Ewers is a board certified Functional and Ayurvedic medical practitioner, as well as Doctor of Sexology, host and founder of The Woman’s Vitality Summit, and founder of a new branch of medicine called Functional Sexology. Click here to learn more about her Integrative Medicine Health Coach Certification Program.

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