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What Should Be In A Prenatal Vitamin

Make Sure Your Prenatal Pick Contains These Vitamins And Minerals

How long should I be taking a prenatal vitamin?

Folic acid

This B vitamin has been shown to prevent birth defects involving the brain and spine. Its hard to get from food, so the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends that all pregnant women take a daily vitamin supplement containing 400 micrograms. Most over-the-counter prenatals have plenty of folic acid, Hawk says. But if youve previously had a baby with neural tube defects, your provider may prescribe one that has more.


Pregnant women need calcium not only for their bones but for the development of the babys bones, Hawk says. Studies have also found that women who supplement with calcium during pregnancy reduce their risk for hypertension and pre-eclampsia. ACOG recommends that women age 19 and older get 1,000 mg per day of calcium through food and/or supplementation.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D helps your body absorb the calcium that builds your and babys bones and teeth. Although we can get it from sun exposure and certain foods, most Americans do not get the recommended amount, which is about 600 IUs per day.

Vitamin B6

Vitamin B6 may help curb nausea and vomiting from morning sickness. And, Hawk says its even more effective when its combined with an antihistamine called doxylamine, which is available over-the-counter. The National Institutes of Health recommends that pregnant women get 1.9 milligrams of B6 each day.



What Is The Distinction Between Prenatal Vitamins And Multivitamins

Some common vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, B vitamins, and zinc, may be found in both prenatal vitamins and womens multivitamins. Prenatals, on the other hand, may contain ingredients such as folic acid, iodine, and DHA recommended by experts for pregnant or intending to become pregnant women. Furthermore, some prenatal vitamins cut out the iron to be gentler on your tummy, which is beneficial if you feel nauseated.

Each womens multivitamin on the market has a unique composition with varying quantities of a range of components. So, if you are unsure about which prenatal vitamin and multivitamin is best for you, consult your doctor. Then, examine the labeling of your everyday multivitamin and prenatal vitamins, and select the one that provides the vitamins your doctor advises.

What To Look For

For starters, it is important you discuss a recommended diet with your care provider at the beginning of the pregnancy.Your midwife or another care provider may give you a prescription for prenatal vitamins, or have a list of over the counter varieties that they recommend based on your individual needs. When choosing a prenatal vitamin, look for the following:

Other nutrients you might see include vitamins E & B12, niacin, riboflavin, magnesium, biotin, choline, phosphorus, pantothenic acid, and ginger .

When researching vitamins, you might see terms like Recommended Dietary Allowance and Tolerable Upper Intake Levels . RDA is the amount of the nutrient the average person needs for good health, whereas UL refers to the highest amount of a nutrient someone can ingest without experiencing negative effects.

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Why Trust Verywell Family

As a Registered Dietitian, Sydney Greene takes supplement recommendations seriously. Every product has been researched and vetted by her against clinical research, product reviews, and third-party testing websites. These are products she would not only feel comfortable recommending to her clients but she would take them herself if needed.

Which Vitamin Supplements Should Be Taken In Pregnancy


Recommendations for routine nutritional supplementation vary in every country/ region. Therefore, local guidance should be followed as advised by healthcare professionals and the local governments.

A healthy balanced diet is the best way to ensure all the nutritional requirements are met. No vitamin or nutritional supplement can replace a healthy balanced diet.

Why the vitamin andother nutritional supplements are advised?

1. Supplements can ensure that the increased dailyrequirements of some key essential vitamin and mineral are met to prevent certain pregnancy complications.

2. To treat some nutritional deficiencies during pregnancy.

Always check with your healthcare provider that any vitamin/nutritional supplement is safe for you to ensure:

1. You are not taking an excessive amount which can cause an overdose/ toxicity

2. You do not have any medical condition where it is notsafe to take any specific supplement.

3. You are taking the right dose of the supplement. Incertain medical conditions, you may need to take higher doses of vitamin/nutritional supplement.

Please remember, if you are on a special diet then you may need additional nutritional supplements over and above the routine ones.

What vitamin andmineral supplements are advised?

As discussed, the recommendations vary from one country/ region to the other.

For example, in the UK, for an otherwise healthy pregnant woman, the only supplementation of Folic Acid and Vitamin D are advised.

Folic acid

Vitamin D


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Do I Really Need Prenatal Vitamins

A good prenatal can go a long way in helping you build your nutrient stores before baby. Yes, we want to load up on the good stuff way BEFORE we get pregnant. In fact, we need to do this at minimum 3 months before baby . And you want to focus on your diet too!

You’re going to need a prenatal that’s the real talks. Our food isn’t as nutrient dense as it once was and we go into pregnancy way more nutrient depleted than ever before. That said, diet is the foundation and the supplement is just that, a supplement to your diet. More on diet soon!

With that in mind, you can easily see why a prenatal vitamin is so essential if you are pregnant, or want to become pregnant.

Prenatal Vitamin And Mineral Sources

If your diet consists of unprocessed foods, fruits, a colorful variety of vegetables, whole grains, lentils, and plenty of water, then you likely have sufficient vitamins and minerals already in your body. As long as you are eating a well-balanced diet, you need not fear to overdose on nutrients found naturally in foods.However, some studies have shown symptoms of toxicity after a large consumption of animal organs, such as liver.Supplements are a different story. They contain higher doses of nutrients in a concentrated form, which can be detrimental if taken in improper amounts. Always let your health care provider know what nutritional supplements you are taking.

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What Are Prenatal Vitamins For And How To Take Them

What are prenatal vitamins for and how to take them?.

The wonder of conception is undeniable: starting with a few cells and after nine months, you will have a baby that will weigh about three pounds and measure 50 centimeters, but do you know how these characteristics are achieved? We tell you why it is so important to take prenatal vitamins and what the recommended dose is, although you should always check with your doctor.

Why Is Folic Acid Important During Pregnancy

What should you look for in a prenatal vitamin?

Folic acid is a B vitamin found in many supplements and fortified foods. Its the synthetic form of folate. Folic acid is used by your body to make new cells and produce DNA. Its required for normal growth and development throughout your life.

Taking folic acid is particularly vital before and during pregnancy. Its important for the proper organ development of a developing baby.

Research shows that taking folic acid before you get pregnant may help prevent birth defects including serious neural tube defects such as spina bifida, encephalocele , and anencephaly.

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Side Effects Of Prenatal Vitamins

The side effect from prenatal vitamins that most plagues pregnant women is nausea. Sometimes, the taste or smell of them can make you sick other times the vitamins irritate your stomach. If the vitamins you’re taking bother you, ask if you can switch brands or take a children’s chewable vitamin.

Another side effect from the vitamins is constipation, which is caused by iron. To combat this, drink plenty of water and increase your fiber intake.

Some women may have an allergic reaction to prenatal vitamins. If this happens to you, contact your doctor immediately and refrain from taking the vitamins.

What Is A Prenatal Vitamin

A prenatal vitamin is a supplement designed to provide nutrients and minerals needed for a healthy pregnancy. The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecologists notes taking a prenatal vitamin and eating nutritious foods should provide a person with all the vitamins and minerals they need during pregnancy.

A prenatal vitamin is important for pregnant people, as the growing fetus requires certain nutrients that can be hard to get through diet alone.

Fetal development is rapid and requires a lot of metabolismits dependent on the proper amount of amino acids and nutrients, says James Grifo, M.D., the program director at NYU Langone Fertility Center in New York City and chief executive physician at Inception Fertility.

ACOG recommends pregnant people consume certain amounts of calcium to help build strong bones and teeth, iron to help red blood cells deliver oxygen to the fetus, iodine and choline to aid in brain development, and folic acid to help prevent birth defects. Additionally, it recommends vitamins A, B6, B12, C and D, which provide benefits that range from promoting healthy skin and eyesight to the formation of red blood cells. While much of these nutrients can be obtained through a healthy diet, a prenatal vitamin provides the extra assurance your daily nutrition needs are met, no matter whats on the menu.

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Q Is It Safe To Use Prenatal Vitamins Throughout Pregnancy

Prenatal vitamins are generally considered to be safe. However, one must always seek doctors to provide medical advice before beginning a new supplement regimen. Some pills may contain additives such as herbs or botanicals that are not suitable for everyone. However, keep in mind that short ingredient lists are likely to be the best during pregnancy.

Do Prenatal Vitamins Have Side Effects

How Long Should You Take Prenatal Vitamins After Giving ...

A lot of people wonder about about prenatal vitamins side effects. Some people get nauseated or constipated from taking prenatal vitamins. If this happens to you, talk with your doctor about changing brands or the types of vitamins youre taking.

Prenatal vitamins come in tablets or capsules, so finding the kind that works best with your body can help ease side effects. Your doctor or midwife can help you find a prenatal vitamin that will work best for your body.

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Do Prenatal Vitamins Have Any Side Effects

The ingredient thats most likely to cause gastrointestinal side effects is iron, which may cause indigestion and constipation. There are different iron preparations available, so women who experience these effects with one vitamin may want to try a different vitamin that has a slower-release form of iron.

Other vitamins dont necessarily have side effects, but may be harmful if too much is ingested. Too much vitamin A can have harmful effects on the fetus, but is fine when taken as beta-carotene, a plant-based precursor thats safe. Too much iodine and fat-soluble vitamins may also be harmful.

Finally, prenatal vitamins that pack in all these nutrients may be bigsome women find them hard to swallow and they may cause gagging. Using a chewable alternative may be an option.

This advice applies to most low-risk women and pregnancies. There are certain cases , where the nutritional needs are different. These women should contact their prenatal care providers about the best regimen of nutritional supplement to use.

Jonathan Schaffir is an ob/gyn at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center and a professor at The Ohio State University College of Medicine.

Who Should Take A Prenatal

It is recommended that women who are thinking about becoming pregnant start a prenatal supplement 3-6 months prior to trying to conceive. This is because having good stores of the proper nutrients in your body before conception can ensure that you are able to provide your baby everything it needs. Many women do not realize they are pregnant until the baby is a few weeks old and this time is critical developmentally.

Women who are currently pregnant, especially those at risk for folate, iron, or calcium deficiency, should consider taking a prenatal. Most doctors and OBGYNs will recommend starting one as soon as you find out you are pregnant.

In addition to heightened needs during pregnancy, the first trimester often greets women with a host of symptoms that can affect their eating habits. Morning sickness, fatigue, and food aversions are common during the first several weeks, so taking a prenatal can serve as good coverage to make up for any nutrient losses during this time.

Getting Healthy Hair, Skin, & Nails from a Healthy Diet

While supplements can serve as helpful tools in improving our health, its still important to get as much nutrition as you can from your diet alone. Supplements can get expensive and taking too much of a good thing can have the opposite of the intended effect.

Food sources of biotin include:

  • Eggs
  • Mushrooms
  • Sweet potato

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Pink Stork Best Liquid Prenatal Vitamins

Brand Overview

If taking a tablet causes you to gag, a liquid prenatal supplement may be right for you. It can be consumed by itself, or it can be added to your drink. Because the taste is relatively strong on its own, some people like to combine it with juice.

It provides all of the essential nutrients for a healthy pregnancy in a liquid you can put directly into your favorite drink.

Pink Storks Liquid Prenatal Vitamin delivers 100% or higher of the daily requirement of several essential nutrients. It is gluten-free, non-GMO, and devoid of animal products, and the brand also claims its 18mg of iron is non-constipating.

This exceptionally nutritious formula contains D vitamins to support bone health, 100% RDAs of vitamins A, C, D, E, and B vitamins, and biotin, which promotes the wellbeing of skin cells, nails, and hair. Pink Stork Liquid Prenatal Vitamins also include iron, calcium, magnesium, and zinc, which are essential elements for a successful pregnancy.

In addition, these prenatal vitamins may encourage a healthy respiratory system and may be a powerful antioxidant to support a woman when trying to have a baby, throughout pregnancy, and while breastfeeding.


  • Ease of Use

This prenatal supplement is straightforward to use, as only one tablespoon per day in the morning is required. You can consume the tablespoon on its own or mix it into your favorite beverage.

  • Taste


  • Has a metallic aftertaste

Customer Experience

Which Key Nutrients Should Women Look For In A Prenatal

Why should a woman take a prenatal vitamin rather than a multivitamin?

Although prenatal vitamins typically contain the full range of vitamins and minerals, the ones that are most important are folic acid, B vitamins, calcium and iron. Calcium and iron are particularly important because the requirements for these minerals are higher in pregnancy than they are for non-pregnant women.

However, these are the ingredients most often left out of gummy vitamins, which many women like because of taste and ease of use. So if they choose the gummy, they may need to take extra iron or calcium if these have been left out.

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What Is Folic Acid

Folic acid is a B vitamin that every cell in your body needs for healthy growth and development. Taking folic acid before and during early pregnancy can help prevent birth defects of the brain and spine called neural tube defects . Some studies show that taking folic acid may help prevent heart defects and birth defects in your babys mouth .

  • Before pregnancy take a vitamin supplement with 400 mcg of folic acid every day.
  • Take a vitamin supplement with 400 mcg of folic acid each day, even if youre not trying to get pregnant.
  • During pregnancy, take a prenatal vitamin each day that has 600 mcg of folic acid in it.

Check the product label to see how much folic acid is in it.

If youre at high risk for having a baby with an NTD, talk to your provider about how you can safely take 4,000 mcg of folic acid each day to help prevent an NTD. Start taking 4,000 mcg at least 3 months before you get pregnant and through the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. Youre at high risk if:

  • Youve had a pregnancy with an NTD in the past.
  • You or your partner has an NTD.
  • Your partner has a child with an NTD.

Dont take several multivitamins or prenatal vitamins. You can get too much of other nutrients, which may be harmful to your health. Your provider can help you figure out the best and safest way for you to get the right amount of folic acid.

Prenatal Vitamin Side Effects

Some prenatal vitamins can cause nausea in an already nauseated pregnant woman. If that happens to you, talk to your health care provider. They may be able to prescribe a different kind of prenatal vitamin that you dont have to swallow whole. Options include:

  • Chewables
  • Liquids

The iron in prenatal vitamins may also make you constipated. If youre constipated it can help to:

  • Eat a high-fiber diet
  • Exercise if your doctor says its safe for you
  • Take a stool softener with your doctors OK

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How Do I Choose Prenatal Vitamins

Prenatal vitamins are readily available over the counter and a prescription is generally unnecessary.

If youre concerned about which to choose, dont be. Theres not much difference between over the counter and prescription prenatals, and both are adequate, assures Dr. Nwankwo.

Sometimes prescription prenatals may have special formulationsfor example, they may have a stool softener added to help with constipation, or they may have additional iron. The pills may also be smaller and easier to take. But its not necessary, she says. It also doesnt matter whether you take a tablet or a gummy, just make sure it has the right amount of vitamins you need.

Every vitamin can differ in the types and amounts of nutrients it contains because specific vitamin ingredients arent regulated by the FDA. If the vitamin you choose doesnt contain the full recommended daily amount of a nutrient, be sure to eat foods that are high in that vitamin or mineral.

When shopping for prenatal vitamins look for these four primary nutrients that are especially important during pregnancy, per Dr. Nwankwo and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists):

  • Folic acid: 600 mcg
  • Iron: 27 mg
  • Calcium: 1,000 mg
  • Vitamin D: 600 IU

The following vitamins are also essential during pregnancy, and you may not get enough of them through diet alone. Having these in your prenatals are helpful too:

  • Vitamin A: 770 mcg
  • Vitamin C: 85 mg
  • Vitamin B12: 2.6 mcg
  • Choline: 450 mg


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