Pregnancy and Lactation Weekly Digest

For the Week Ending January 29, 2023. 

COVID-19 Vaccines International Pregnancy Exposure Registry (C-VIPER)

More than 8,000 pregnant vaccinated women are already participating in our survey.

Help us understand the impact of COVID-19 vaccines on pregnancy and babies. Be a part of it!

Click here to Register

Lead in baby food

The FDA has set new allowable levels of lead in baby food. Until now the only limit for toxic metals in baby food was arsenic in rice cereal (rice commonly and naturally has high levels of arsenic, because it is grown in water and arsenic is a naturally occurring element that is dissolved in water). Specialty groups think the FDA should do more. Read more here.

This is important for you because “The best way to lessen your child’s exposure to heavy metals, experts say, is to vary the foods eaten on a daily basis.” 

“Pretty Baby”

“Pretty Baby,” the Brooke Shields biopic, includes her bout with postpartum depression after giving birth to her daughter Rowan. Read more here.

This is important for you because NO ONE is immune from this disease.

Infant fear, adult anxiety, and the microbiome

A disordered gut microbiome has long been associated with depression and anxiety in adults, but it is difficult to know which is the cause and which the effect. New work shows that a similarly sparse microbiome in infants can cause them to feel unduly scared. The researchers who found this hope that “the findings could lead to a whole new way of addressing anxiety and depression in adults by effectively intervening in early childhood, while the brain is still developing.” Read more here.

This is important for you because this is an intriguing finding, but it probably needs to be replicated and followed up with longitudinal studies to assess these kids’ mental health as they age to see if there is a real basis for treatment. 


That’s right–there are NINE of them. Five girls and four boys. And yes, they are in the Guiness Book of World Records. Read more here.

This is important for you because your life is so easy compared to this.

The most popular article on The Pulse this week was 5 Things You Wish Your Partner Understood About Pregnancy. Read it here.

Diana Gitig
Dr. Diana Gitig has a Ph.D. in cell biology and genetics from Cornell University, and has been writing about issues in biology – from molecular biology to cancer to immunology to neuroscience to nutrition to agriculture - for the past fifteen years. She has three teenaged children.

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