A pregnant woman

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Diet is key for prenatal development — for both mom and dad

December 07, 2018 - 3:00 am

KYW’s Medical Reports are sponsored by Independence Blue Cross. 

By Dr. Brian McDonough, Medical Editor

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — It is well known that a woman’s diet before pregnancy can have an impact on the unborn child.

What many don’t realize is that father’s diet before conception could play a similar role in the health of offspring. 

Folate is a vitamin found in green leafy vegetables, cereals, fruits and meats, and is critical for prenatal development. 

We have long recommended that women take folic acid. However, studies in mice have shown that there is a 30 percent increase in birth defects in offspring of mice whose fathers had inadequate prenatal folate levels. 

It makes sense for both mom and dad to choose a diet wisely.