Educating women about nutrition needed for pregnancy

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that nutritional needs increase during pregnancy, but what key nutrients do expecting mothers need, how much and when?

A recent consumer poll conducted by Anmum with more than 1,600 women planning to have children across Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia found that overall less than 17 per cent were aware of the correct daily intake of folate required for a healthy pregnancy[i] which is recommended to be 400 micrograms[ii].   

While more than 90 per cent of respondents knew that folate was a beneficial nutrient for pregnancy, less than half knew that this was because of its effectiveness for reducing the occurrence of neural tube defects (NTDs)[1]. Further to that, less than a third of all women polled knew the additional importance of vitamin B12 in helping folate to reduce the risk of NTDs[iii], and of vitamin B6 for helping to reduce nausea – a common side effect of pregnancy[1].

Rebecca Cannan, Health and Nutrition Lead – Anmum Maternal & Paediatrics at Fonterra says while it was heartening to see that most women planning to have children recognised that folate is an important nutrient, it’s disappointing that many don’t know why that is or how much they need - especially as we know that a woman’s dietary requirement for folate is substantially increased when planning for pregnancy and during pregnancy2.

“Many were also unaware of the benefits of vitamins B12 and B6 in assisting pregnancy. I think that shows that there is a role for Anmum Materna to be offered to consumers in these markets as it has been specifically formulated with key essential vitamins and nutrients to support women’s nutritional needs for pregnancy.”

Women who choose Anmum Materna for their pregnancy nutrition can do so with confidence.  A recent clinical study conducted on 70 Asian women aged 21-35, concluded that Anmum Materna is effective in increasing folate, vitamin B12, B6 and D levels – all proven to be important for a healthy pregnancy[iv].   

Miss Cannan says just two glasses of Anmum Materna daily will give women 100 per cent of their additional folate needs of pregnancy. Anmum Materna also contains Probiotic DR10TM and Inulin, GA® and DHA, Iron and Calcium. GA® and DHA are key nutrients important for fetal brain development[v],[vi].

Anmum has been a part of South East Asia for more than 20 years, with USD $50m of robust research and development behind the brand. It is a trusted source of nutrition for expecting mums, infants and children.


[1] The survey of 1,657 respondents across Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia was commissioned by Fonterra and conducted by Blackbox in May 2016.

[1] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Facts about Folic Acid. 2016. Retrieved from

[1] Wang ZP, et al. Low maternal vitamin B12 is a risk factor for neural tube defects: a meta-analysis. The Journal of Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine, 2012; 25(4): 389–394

[1] Cheong M, Ying Xiao H, Tay V, Karakochuk CD, Liu Y, Harvey S, Lamers Y, Houghton LA, Kitts DD, Green TJ. Folic acid fortified milk increases blood folate to concentrations associated with a very low risk of neural tube defects in Singaporean women of child bearing age. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2016; 25(1):62-70.

[1] Mendenz-Otero R, Pimentel-Coelho PM, Ukraintsev S et al. Role of gangliosides in neurological development and the influence of dietary sources. Nutr Inf. 2013;2:105-19.

[1] Greenberg JA, Bell SJ, Ausdal WV. Omega-3 fatty acid supplementation during pregnancy. Rev Obstet Gynecol. 2008;(4):162-9.