Why you need zinc during pregnancy
Your baby needs zinc for cell growth and for the production and functioning of DNA – the body’s genetic blueprint.
Getting enough zinc is especially important during pregnancy because there’s so much rapid cell growth. This essential mineral also helps support your immune system, maintain your senses of taste and smell, and heal wounds.
Some studies link zinc deficiency to low birth weight and other problems during pregnancy, labor, and delivery.
How much zinc you need
Pregnant women age 18 and younger: 12 milligrams (mg) per day
Pregnant women age 19 and older: 11 mg per day
Breastfeeding age 18 and younger: 13 mg per day
Breastfeeding women age 19 and older: 12 mg per day
Nonpregnant women ages 19 and older: 8 mg per day
You don’t have to get the recommended amount of zinc every day. Instead, aim for that amount as an average over the course of a few days or a week.
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