Omega 3 while trying to conceive

 I have been diagnosed with clinical depression. After trying numerous anti depressants since my teens on and off I decided to come off them while trying to conceive baby no 2. I am currently taking 1200mg of Omega 3 and am wondering how much I can take whilst in my situation. I will also want to take Omegas throughout the pregnancy and I am prone to anxiety and depression. I had post postpartum depression with my first child and really would like to avoid it next time around : I also take 1500mg EPO for the first part of my cycle.This is obviously stopped after ovulation and if I were to conceive. I strongly believe in using natural methods to help with my situation as I believe the body can heal itself better using foods/herbs. I also suffer from very low self esteem and am practicing yoga once weekly. I just wish that the insurance companies could see the validity in natural health. Any advice on the amount of Omegas I can take would be greatly appreciated, Many Thanks.


Thank you for that great question.  Omega 3 fatty acid supplementation is a critical part of pre-natal care that is often overlooked.  A child's developing nervous system needs access to abundant Omega 3 fatty acids for proper development.  About sixty percent of your brain is composed of fat and a large portion of that fat consists of Omega 3 fatty acids.  Now, if you as a mom are not consuming enough Omega 3's while pregnant, your body will sacrifice your own stores to supply the baby with adequate amounts.  This can leave you depleted by the end of pregnancy and is one of the reasons thought to contribute to post-partum depression.  Women who consume adequate amounts of Omega 3 fatty acids, particularly those from fish oil, have a lower instance of post-partum depression.

Let's talk about what an adequate dose is.  Generally speaking, to get a therapeutic benefit from fish oil it is usually necessary to take between 2,000-4,000 mg per day.  For this reason I might suggest that you increase your current dose to get up to about 2400mg of Omega 3 from fish oil every day.  Just make sure you are taking an Omega 3 supplement that has been molecular distilled to remove toxins and impurities, particularly heavy metals like mercury.  This is more and more becoming the standard in the industry but check the label of your fish oil bottle or contact the manufacture to make sure. 

If you are getting your Omega 3's from Cod Liver Oil make sure to check the Vitamin A content as this is something you want to restrict when trying to, or if you are pregnant.  No more than 10,000 IU total of supplemental Vitamin A per day is the recommendation. 

In Health,

Dr. Passero

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As a certified and fully trained Naturopathic Doctor, Passero has trained and preceptored with some of the nation's leading doctors in the field of natural medicine, working under the guidance of MD’s, Chiropractors, Naturopaths and Acupuncturists. Furthermore, he is currently the Vice President of the Maryland Association of Naturopathic Physicians.

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