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B12 and Prenatal Supplements Gain Official Nod

In updated 2020-2025 dietary guidelines, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services have endorsed the specific use of certain supplements, noting that under-consumption of some nutrients among Americans is linked to health concerns. The guidelines advise that infants being fed breast milk exclusively or partially should be given a vitamin D supplement of 400 IU per day beginning soon after birth and perhaps continuing for more than a year. Women that are pregnant or planning to become pregnant should take a daily prenatal vitamin and mineral supplement. Pregnant or lactating women that follow a vegetarian or vegan diet are advised to talk to their healthcare provider about supplementation to ensure that they get adequate amounts of iron, vitamin B12, choline, zinc, iodine and omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). The guidelines also state that some older adults may require vitamin B12 supplements, noting concerns over the amount of the vitamin absorbed from food.

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Global Brief: Natural Thinking Spending Time in Nature Increases Cognitive Performance
More of our time is spent indoors than ever before. One of the ways by which nature may improve cognitive function (i.e. the acquisition of and goal-oriented use of knowledge) is by improving memory formation and recall, specifically that of short-term or working memory, and goal-oriented or directed attention; the kind that requires focused effort. By comparing and contrasting 13 studies, a team of researchers has shed light on this complex interaction in research published in Frontiers in Psychology. The studies used the backwards digit span task, which requires participants to invert a series of numbers and repeat them back. All demonstrated significantly improved cognition in nature as compared to urban environments. The benefits of studies like this are two-fold: not only are we learning more about how the brain interacts with its environment, but also how to leverage this interaction to lead healthier, more productive and happier lives.
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