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Robin Elise Weiss, LCCE

Drinking Before You Knew You Were Pregnant

By February 7, 2009

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Sometimes it happens that you find out you're pregnant and realize that you were drinking in early pregnancy without knowing it. We usually just have to say that we'll wait and see what happens to the baby because of this incident. However, we do know that it's amount timing and how often the pregnancy is exposed to alcohol. So I was surprised to see that some scientists have some preliminary data that may help women in this situation, zinc.

They injected pregnant mice at the equivalent of a human's week 3-8 gestation with alcohol. They fed them a normal diet or a zinc enhanced diet. The ones who had zinc had much better outcomes in terms of lowered birth defects. They don't think this means women should drink and simply take zinc in pregnancy nor do they think you should have alcohol manufacturers having products with zinc. I did have a really odd image of a new beer commercial showing a very pregnant woman knocking back a beer and slogan about drinking your prenatal vitamin. Thankfully that isn't what they are talking about. But hopefully future research will be able to help the moms who have that accidental exposure to alcohol early in pregnancy. What are your thoughts?



Dietary Zinc Supplementation Throughout Pregnancy Protects Against Fetal Dysmorphology and Improves Postnatal Survival After Prenatal Ethanol Exposure in Mice. Summers BL, Rofe AM, Coyle P. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2009 Jan 12. [Epub ahead of print]

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