A low-carbohydrate diet (well below 100g per day) can be risky for women who are trying to get pregnant, want to become a mom, or are already pregnant. According to a recent study, in fact, the deprivation of carbohydrates can create damage to the fetus, and increases the risk for the unborn child of having serious neural tube defects (with the consequence of being born with a bifid spine, encephalocele and anencephaly) compared to a diet. balanced in the intake of carbohydrates.
The team of University of North Carolina researchers who have highlighted a link between low-carb diets of expectant mothers and defects in fetal development suggest that the problem with low-carb diets is that they do not provide enough folic acid to keep a child alive. “healthy” pregnancy.
Folic acid is a B vitamin (B9) which needs increased during pregnancy for a healthy fetus to develop.
Folic acid is found in cereals, legumes, tomatoes, oranges, kiwis and green leafy vegetables. Clearly, by cutting cereals, legumes, tomatoes and fruit from the diet, the risk of experiencing a deficiency of this vitamin is very high. If you are trying to become a mother or are already pregnant, do not eliminate these foods from your diet.
According to the researchers, in fact, the risk of creating similar serious malformations in the fetus rises by 30% if the expectant mother has drastically reduced carbohydrates.
Doctor Tania Desrosiers, who led the study, explains that the concern about low carb diets is real given the popularity of these dietary approaches., and that more and more studies have highlighted how much the diet of the expectant mother counts in pregnancy to protect the fetus from unnecessary risks at birth ( source ).