According to Fetal medicine specialist Dr. Patrick Chia, maternal milk is unnecessary for pregnant mothers as the best way to meet their daily required nutrient intake is to consume a balanced diet. He also emphasizes that the only supplement necessary for all pregnant mums in Malaysia is folic acid. Depending on your general health and well-being, your gynecologist may also prescribe you pregnancy multivitamins or iron supplements if you are anemic.
What Are the Choices?
However, this doesn’t mean pregnant mothers should avoid drinking milk. In fact, milk is a nutritious food rich in calcium, protein, and vitamin D, which is important for mothers. To determine the best milk for mothers, we’ll break down the wide selection of milk available in the market into 3 categories;
Maternal milk is the most common choice for mothers to take. It is a formulated milk specifically enriched to meet the daily required nutrients intake of pregnant and breastfeeding mothers. To and extend, this is the best choice of milk for mothers as it contains crucial nutrients like folic acid, iron for your baby.
However, there is a downside to drinking maternal milk. Most maternal milk contains a high sugar level, which may increase the risk of getting gestational diabetes. Gestational diabetes is a condition in which your blood sugar levels become high during pregnancy, affecting up to 10% of women during pregnancy. While gestational diabetes is manageable with regular exercise and careful diet planning, women with a family history prone to diabetes may have a tougher time managing their blood sugar level. Therefore it is recommended to select the right formula that has less sugar and calories.
Karihome Whole Goat Milk adult milk is a goat milk formula for adults. It contains high levels of natural calcium and vitamin D for bone formation, and it does not contain any added sugar. Goat milk’s protein is also easier to digest than cow milk so that it can avoid digestion issues. Thus, Karihome goat milk is suitable to be taken during pregnancy.
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Non-dairy milk refers to milk derived from plant sources such as soy milk, oat milk, rice milk, coconut milk, almond milk, and more. The major advantage that plant-based milk has over dairy milk is that it contains less saturated fats, which means that it naturally packs fewer calories than its animal-based alternative. This can be beneficial for mothers who are looking to watch their weight during pregnancy. Additionally, plant-based milk is also cholesterol-free and suitable for vegetarians.
However, plant-based milk is also known to contain less nutrition as compared to dairy milk. For instance, soy milk, the most commercially available non-dairy milk, contains lesser calcium than dairy milk. Calcium is one of the most important minerals for pregnant mothers as it contributes to your baby's bone formation. Lack of consumption during pregnancy and breastfeeding increases the risk of health conditions such as osteoporosis and osteopenia. The mother should note that the taste of plant-based milk can also be quite distinct from dairy milk like cow milk.
Arguably the most common choice of milk we consume, most mothers would often opt to drink cow milk as it is the most widely available milk by a margin, and it's also relatively cost-friendly. However, it must be emphasized that drinking cow milk is not without its disadvantage.
Many cow milk available these days do not truly come from cows as we think but from a certain substitute to cow milk called reconstituted or recombined milk solids. Recombined and reconstituted milk and milk products are made from preserved dairy ingredients, which are processed in such a way as to resemble products made from fresh milk supplies. That is not to say that reconstituted milk is always bad; in fact, some milk products in the market require reconstituted milk to be added, such as children's formula milk. However, finding genuine fresh cow milk may be difficult for mothers if they do not know what to look for.
Mothers can also consider drinking goat milk as well. Goat milk is good for mothers as it contains higher calcium and vitamin D compare to other animal milk. Goat milk also contains natural milk fat that is smaller than cow milk by 1/3 of its size. Hence it is easier to be digested and absorbed by our body.
Which milk is best for mothers?
Ultimately, the best choice of milk really depends from person to person. If your work schedule dictates you to cook and plan a balanced meal, perhaps maternal formula milk is more suitable for you. For mothers who only drink milk as an added supplement, dairy milk, such as goat milk, may be better than its high nutritional content.