A pregnancy diet rich in vitamin B12 linked to calmer, more contented babies who cry less
Chow down on a nice bit o' steak
Pregnant? Start feasting on (hard) cheese and (well cooked) steak if you want a contented baby, a new study suggests.
Babies whose mums ate plenty of foods high in vitamin B12 in pregnancy have been found to be calmer, less colicky and more contented than those whose mums ate lower levels.
Researchers looked at the levels of vitamin B12 in the blood of more than 4,000 mums-to-be in the 12th week of pregnancy and then compared the levels to answers from a questionnaire the new mums filled out three months after birth.
The effect of high levels of vitamin B12 was apparent even after other factors such as social background, age of the mums and smoking were taken out of the equation. The scientists believe that a lack of vitamin B12 could affect the development of nerve cells in the brain, which may show itself by causing babies to be restless and irritable.
Dairy, eggs, red meat and chicken are all high in vitamin B12. Shellfish and liver are also good sources but are not recommended in pregnancy. Doctors are concerned that mums-to-be may not be getting enough of the vitamin as they take care to avoid foods that could be harmful to their unborn baby.
Find out what you should avoid in pregnancy and get a health boost with our A-Z of pregnancy superfoods.