Our Modern Pregnancy Diet is Failing Us




Vitamin A

Vitamin E

1. Averages of the previously listed Indigenous Diets





2. Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) – for Pregnancy, standards proposed by US Government, Ages 19-30



2541 IU


3. Percentage of Adult Women below the RDA, averages (RDA is not identical to the DRI, but the figures are similar)





4. Percentage of Adult Women below 50% of the RDA (that is, percent of women who eat ½ or less of the RDA figures)





5. Percentage of Adult Men Below the RDA





Here the guidelines for pregnancy intakes are compared with average intakes from indigenous diets mentioned in the pregnancy diet section of this website. The recommended intakes are far below what the average healthy indigenous person ate in the native diets. Vitamins A and E are important fat-soluble vitamins. All figures for calcium and phosphorus are in grams.

1. Averages of the previously listed Indigenous Diets that Resulted in Healthy Pregnancies

The first row for comparison is the average figures of the four indigenous diets mentioned previously. The exact figures for fat-soluble vitamins (such as A and E) are missing, but due to their lack in our modern diet we know that the fat-soluble vitamin intake in a healthy indigenous person is several times higher than in the modern displacing diet. With Dr. Price’s careful investigations, he found that the indigenous diet could contain as much as ten times more fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, and K) than the modern diet that replaced it. I know for certain that the tests Weston Price used for fat-soluble activators generally were related to tests for vitamin A.

2. Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) for Pregnancy

The next row is a standard called the Dietary Reference Intakes by the National Academy of Sciences. This represents what our government agencies believe are healthy nutrient intakes for pregnant women. Keep in mind that the indigenous nutrient intakes presented were representative of what an average adult might consume, and they did not reflect the higher nutrient intake of food consumption during pregnancy; the true indigenous figures for pregnancy nutrient intake could have been even higher. The intake percentages for the modern diets are in reference to the figures in line 2, the DRI. If we were to compare nutrient intakes of the typical US citizen to that of healthy indigenous people across the globe, we would likely find that 5% or less of the US population is eating a healthy diet in terms of vitamin and nutrient intakes.

3. Percentage of Adult Women below the RDA, who potentially could become pregnant

The RDA, Recommended Dietary Allowance, is now called the RDI, Reference Daily Intake (that is different from the DRI, but they are similar). Yes, these acronyms can be confusing. When the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) did their 1994-1996 nutrition survey, they studied how many women on average were below the RDA standards. The DRI standards which I have listed are likely to be very similar to the RDA standards. In some cases, the figures may not be precisely the same but they are close enough to make the general comparison. Of particular note, the bone building nutrient phosphorus has a very low requirement. As a result of the abnormally low phosphorus standard, the food survey shows less of a phosphorus deficiency — 27.4% of 19-30 year old women are below the required level of phosphorus. The USDA survey found that only 5% of adult women ate the same or more than 1.4 - 1.6 grams of phosphorus a day. A generous conclusion would be that about 5% of modern women get their daily intake of phosphorus. The reality is probably far more grim than that.

Even with the USDA’s low designation for healthy mineral intakes (line one compared with line two) they conclude in their report that modern people may be lacking calcium.

Current calcium intakes by these groups may be insufficient to attain optimal peak bone mass and to prevent age-related loss of bone mass.

4. Percentage of Adult Women below 50% of the RDA. Women who if they became pregnant would be severely nutrient deficient.

This is the number of women who are nutritionally starving. If they are pregnant, there is a significantly higher chance that they will have complications, birth difficulties and a child who is not in good health. A generous estimate would be that these women are eating approximately 25% of the nutrients required to be healthy. They represent approximately 20% of the US female population who are in their childbearing years.

5. Percentage of Adult Men below the RDA

Men contribute to half of the pregnancy before conception. If men are not healthy or are deficient at the time of conception, then a healthy pregnancy may not result.

At the onset of a new life, men contribute 50% of the genetic material necessary to make a baby. On average, 60% of adult men don’t even meet the daily deficient DRI standards. At least half of our population is creating new life on very minimal amounts of nutrients, and so our children are not set up to thrive in the world.

Modern Diet is a Failure for Pregnancy.

Dietary Reference Intakes, Institute of Medicine, http://www.iom.edu/Object.File/Master/21/372/0.pdf,

1. SUPPLEMENTARY DATA TABLES, USDA’s 1994-96 Continuing Survey of Food Intakes by Individuals, Table Set 12, US Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, http://www.ars.usda.gov/SP2Use




Third Report on Nutrition Monitoring in the United States, USDA. http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/misc/tronm.pdf

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