So much changes for a woman once she becomes a mother and, for many women, the planning stages can start years before delivery day. Top of mind is ensuring she gets adequate nutrients to support her changing body and the health of her new baby (or babies). This is a unique period where a woman’s food and nutrition choices directly affect another person.
Decades-long research has shown the benefits of consuming a healthy diet of protein, fiber, vitamins, minerals, omega-3s and probiotics to help ensure the fetus has the best chance of growing and developing healthfully. Those nutrients also help the mother replenish the resources she expends while carrying and nursing her baby. A woman gets constant messages that what she eats during pregnancy and lactation (and what she doesn’t eat) has an effect that lasts a lifetime. Nutrition is of utmost significance.
The importance of extra nutrition during pregnancy and lactation is so well recognized that the federal government has separate dietary reference intakes (DRI) for women during that stage of life. Governmental and medical efforts have convinced women of the importance of taking prenatal vitamins, but a new mother is often not satisfied with picking up whatever maternal nutrition product is most convenient.
Millennial moms—and most new moms these days are Millennials—are researching the best products by examining nutrition panels and reading about the brand’s vision and social aspects. They are using technology to connect. They are Googling and joining online mom groups. They are taking recommendations from influencers and connecting with brands directly on social media. They are using apps that explain weekly milestones and compare the growing fetus’ size to common fruits.
Brands can also develop new apps or technologies to help pregnant women and new moms connect to their pregnancy, and to the products and practices that will help them achieve healthy outcomes for themselves and their children. Brands have realized success when they display a holistic approach, where their products are part of a healthy pregnancy that also includes mindfulness and exercise.
The nutrition needs of women are seemingly being addressed by brands that are launching more products and options in this space, but to be successful, these companies need to understand the concerns of new moms and how to best speak to them. These brands must also be transparent about the ingredients they use and the good they are doing for society. Moms often start to focus more on the world that their children will inherit, so the brands that care and act upon the greater good will have a leg up.