I read the posts about pregnancy and then I read the posts about donating blood, but didn't see anything about specifically about donating blood while pregnant... does anyone know if it's safe/recommended or not?
I'm not pregnant, just curious for future reference!
It is not safe and I can not imagine that it would be allowed. During pregnancy the mothers blood volume increses 40-50% (no kidding) but the red cell mass only by 20-30%. For this you need a massive amount of iron and many women become anemic at some point during pregnancy. It is postulated that this is actually good for the birth to some extent but if you get too anemic it increases the risk of dying in childbirth. You would need to lose less blood volume to compromise sufficient oxygen transport to the brain and other organs if you are anemic than if you are not and thus can tolerate less bleeding in childbirth, which is risky :)
No, you cannot give blood while pregnant or breastfeeding. It's one of the questions they ask before they will take the blood. You wouldn't want to lose that much iron, fluids, and such while trying to nourish a fetus anyway.
I wouldn't think it would be a good idea, but one thing to keep in mind is that, because of normal and beneficial hemodilution, pregnant women generally have H&H levels below the level required to donate blood by mid-pregnancy.
In my opinion i think the unborn baby also depend on the mother's blood for supply of food nutrients. In fact, it doesn't necessarily mean that the baby depends on the circulatory system of the mother but the nutrients do assimilate into the digestive system of the unborn baby from the umbilical cord.