Nutrients improve mood, reduce infection after childbirth

Tryptophan, tyrosine, blueberry postpartum 

New mothers’ sense of sadness often reaches a peak five days after giving birth, and can signal future postpartum depression. The mood changes come from a temporary increase in a brain protein, monoamine oxidase-A or MAO-A, that has a link to depression. Because drugs that inhibit MAO-A have harsh side effects, doctors here wanted to design a supplement to counter the effects of rising MAO-A levels.

In the study, 41 healthy women, average age 32, took no supplements or 2 grams of tryptophan, 10 grams of tyrosine, and blueberry juice with blueberry extract for three days after giving birth.

At day five, when sadness tends to peak, women in the supplement group scored better on mood tests than women who had not taken supplements. The non-supplement women also had clear signs of depressed mood while the tryptophan-tyrosine-blueberry group did not.

Rosehips reduce UTI

Caesarean sections include procedures such as bladder catheterization, which increase chances of urinary tract infection (UTI) due to E. coli bacteria. Earlier studies found rosehips can prevent UTI E. coli growth. In this study, 400 women with C-section birth, and without UTI, took a placebo or 500 mg of rosehips per day beginning on the second day after the procedure. During the next 20 days, chances for UTI were significantly lower in the rosehips group compared to placebo. By day 20, three women in the rosehips group had UTI compared to 19 for placebo. Rosehips contain vitamin C, which may help prevent UTI through its antioxidant action.

Reference: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences; 2017, Vol. 114, No. 13, 3509-14
Natural Insights for Well Being March 2018
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