Table of contents:
- Some of the Benefits of Soy Milk for Pregnant Women and Fetus
- Side Effects and Amount of Recommended Soy Milk Consumption for Pregnant Women
The benefits of soy milk for pregnant women are not small. In addition to its delicious taste, soy milk has many nutrients that are good for the he alth of pregnant women and fetuses. However, if consumed in excess, soy milk can also cause side effects
Soy milk is milk obtained from processed soybeans that have been boiled and ground, then mixed with water. In a glass of unsweetened soy milk, there are about 130–140 calories, 8 grams of carbohydrates, 4 grams of fat, and 7 grams of protein.
Soy milk also contains vitamin A, vitamin B12, folate, iron, zinc, and isoflavones. Most soy milk products have also been fortified with vitamin D and calcium.
Some of the Benefits of Soy Milk for Pregnant Women and Fetus
Soy milk contains many nutrients that are good for the he alth of pregnant women and fetuses. The following are some of the benefits of soy milk for pregnant women and fetuses:
1. Supports the formation of fetal tissues and organs
Protein is one of the important nutrients needed by the fetus in order to grow and develop he althily. Protein serves to support the formation of fetal tissues and organs, including the brain. Adequate protein intake during pregnancy can also reduce the risk of the fetus being born with low weight.
The protein content in soy milk is also useful for the development of the uterus and breasts of pregnant women, as well as a form of self-preparation for the process of childbirth and breastfeeding later.
2. Sufficient vitamin needs of pregnant women and fetus
The content of vitamin A in soy milk is important for the development process of the eyes, skin, bones, and other organs in the fetus's body as well as forming the immune system. In addition, vitamin A is also useful for maintaining eye he alth and maintaining the immune system of pregnant women.
Intake of vitamin B12 obtained from soy milk, is good for supporting the process of forming red blood cells in pregnant women and maintaining the he alth of maternal and fetal nervous tissue. Together with the isoflavone content in soy milk, vitamin B12 can also prevent neurological disorders in the fetus.
Vitamin B12 deficiency during pregnancy is known to increase the risk of pregnant women getting anemia, preeclampsia, and miscarriage.
3. Supports the development of the fetal nervous system
Folate contained in soy milk is a very useful nutrient for optimizing the development of the nervous system and fetal brain. Meeting the needs of folate and vitamin B12 during pregnancy has been proven to prevent congenital abnormalities in the baby's nerves, such as spina bifida.
4. Prevent anemia
Soy milk contains iron and levels can be higher in soy milk products that have been fortified with iron. Thanks to the iron content, soy milk is useful for forming red blood cells in the body of pregnant women and preventing anemia and reducing the risk of premature birth.
5. Strengthens fetal bones and teeth
Soy milk contains calcium and vitamin D which are good for he althy bones and teeth. These two nutrients are the basic ingredients for the formation of bone and tooth tissue in the fetus.
In addition to the above benefits, there are several other benefits of soy milk for pregnant women, namely:
- Strengthening the immune system of pregnant women and fetuses thanks to the content of protein, vitamin A, and zinc
- Maintain cholesterol levels of pregnant women and meet the intake of good omega-3 fatty acids
- Reducing the risk of depression during pregnancy
Side Effects and Amount of Recommended Soy Milk Consumption for Pregnant Women
Although it has many benefits for pregnant women, soy milk can also cause side effects if consumed too much. Some of the side effects of soy milk are:
Interfere with the absorption of minerals needed by the fetus
Soy milk contains phytic acid which can interfere with the absorption of essential minerals such as calcium, iron, and zinc which are needed for fetal growth and development.
Lowering good cholesterol needed during pregnancy
If consumed too much, soy milk can lower the natural cholesterol levels that the body actually needs during pregnancy. This cholesterol plays a role in the formation of vitamin D, as well as pregnancy hormones such as progesterone and estrogen.
Increases the risk of disorders of the fetal reproductive system
Isoflavones in soy milk have a chemical structure that resembles the hormone estrogen. Therefore, the isoflavones in soy milk are also known as phytoestrogens.
In pregnant women who have male fetuses, excessive intake of isoflavones is believed to increase the risk of the fetus experiencing abnormalities in the reproductive system or vital organs. Meanwhile, in female fetuses, excess isoflavone intake is thought to increase the risk of the fetus experiencing early puberty later.
However, some of the effects of soy milk above have only been known through the results of laboratory studies and small-scale studies. Until now, the impact and side effects of soy milk on the he alth of pregnant women and fetuses still need to be investigated further.
Basically, soy milk is safe for pregnant women to consume, as long as the portion is not excessive. The recommended amount of soy milk consumption for pregnant women is 1-2 glasses per day.
If the condition of the pregnant mother and the fetus is he althy, soy milk can be consumed as part of the daily menu. However, pregnant women may need to limit or should not consume soy milk if they have a history of certain diseases, such as thyroid disease and breast cancer.
To get the maximum benefits of soy milk for pregnant women, choose soy milk products fortified with vitamin D and calcium. If you are still unsure about consuming soy milk during pregnancy, pregnant women can consult a gynecologist.