Dos And Donts When Taking Dietary Supplements For Pregnancy
Stick to the rules and tips below to ensure effectiveness and reduce any risk of adverse side effects.
- Supplements should not replace healthy meals and exercise. You need these daily to make your supplements work.
- Eat a variety of whole plant foods and healthy animal products when taking supplements.
- Always remember that your nutritional needs should be met primarily through your diet.
- Remember to exercise as well to keep your lymph moving and improve overall health.
- Do not combine supplements without the instructions, permission, and supervision of a professional. Some nutrients antagonize each other and cancel out the effect of each other. Some react and cause complications in the body, combining can also overstimulate the immune system and this is a dangerous condition.
So be careful of combining dietary supplements. However, some nutrients go together perfectly with other nutrients, for example, Iodine needs vitamin C, selenium, magnesium, etc. to work well.
Make sure you are following your doctor or naturopathic doctors orders.
Folic Acid And Pregnancy
Folate is a B-group vitamin found in a variety of foods. Folic acid helps protect against neural tube defects in the developing foetus. It is important for pregnant women to make sure they are receiving enough of this important vitamin. For women who are planning a pregnancy, and during the first 3 months of pregnancy, a daily folic acid supplement of 500 micrograms is recommended, as well as eating foods that are naturally rich in folate or are fortified with folic acid.
Best Gummy Prenatal Vitamin: Smarty Pants Prenatal Formula
Vitafol is a go-to prescription for Dr. Sandy Dorcelus, DO, a gynecologist at NYU Langone Hospital. Specifically, Dr. Dorcelus likes that Vitafol’s pills are small and easy to swallow. Plus, they are enteric-coated, which basically means they’re easy on the stomachshe says about one-third of her pregnant patients complain about nausea due to prenatal vitamins.
That said, if youre anemic, on anti-seizure medications, or have had a previous birth with neural tube defects, Dr. Dorcelus recommends taking an additional iron supplement with this vitamin.
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How Important Are Prenatal Vitamins For Babys Health
One of the biggest challenges during pregnancy is trying to do everything right for the baby. Many parents worry about their childs development and what steps should be taken to support it. Fortunately, there is a source for some peace of mind! One of the most important steps you can take during pregnancy is to provide your baby with the nutrients they need to grow strong and healthy. A prenatal vitamin may be the best way to do that.
Supporting your health and the growing baby is no light task. We here at iwi understand that and want to make sure you know everything you should look out for as you consider taking a prenatal vitamin.
Dietary Supplements For Pregnancy
1. Prenatal vitamins
These are multivitamins formulated especially for pregnant women to help them meet their demands for micronutrients during their pregnancy. Prenatal vitamins are meant to be taken before and during pregnancy. They are also meant to be taken during breastfeeding.
These supplements for pregnancy will reduce your risks of preeclampsia and preterm birth. Preeclampsia is a dangerous complication in pregnancy, and it is characterized by high blood pressure and possibly protein in the urine.
Even though these multivitamins are not meant to replace a healthy diet in pregnant women, they prevent nutritional deficiencies by providing extra micronutrients that the body demands earnestly in pregnancy.
If you are taking prenatal vitamins, you may not need additional vitamin or mineral supplements unless your doctor prescribes them. Remember that it is dangerous to self-medicate during pregnancy.
Prenatal vitamins are prescribed by doctors. You can also get them over the counter or from a reputable online store.
Folate is a B vitamin that prevents birth defects. It plays an important role in the synthesis of DNA, the production of red blood cells, and the growth and development of your fetus. Folate is found in green leafy vegetables and other plant foods while folic acid is the synthetic form of folate. In the body, folic acid is converted to L-Methylfolate, the active form of folate.
4. Vitamin D
7. Fish oil
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Prenatal Vitamins Supplement Not Replace A Balanced Diet
Any balanced diet will contain plenty of vitamins and minerals, but you should still take a prenatal vitamin to make sure that you are getting enough of the nutrients your body and your baby needs. Additionally, since prenatal vitamins are formulated with the idea that the person taking them is eating a healthy diet, there is no need to seek out additional vitamin supplements in any form, be it a pill, diet drink, or fortified smoothie. Be sure to let your doctor know if you use any of these products so you can be certain you are not getting too much of a good thing.
Why Prenatal Vitamins Are Important
During your pregnancy, your bodys nutritional requirements are different than at other times, and prenatal vitamins are designed for the specific needs of pregnant women. For example, prenatal vitamins have more iron, calcium, and folic acid than regular multivitamins. Folic acid, in particular, is an important part of any diet, but it is imperative for the pregnant woman. Folic acid is proven to be a crucial factor in preventing neural tube birth defects, which is why it is recommended that all women of child bearing age take a folic acid supplement, and also why pregnant women need to take more than the general population.
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What Nutrients Do Pregnant Or Breastfeeding Women Need
Here are some of the essential nutrients that will help you and your baby thrive. They’re found in fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts, beans, dairy products, and lean meats. Your doctor may also recommend a daily prenatal multivitamin with iron.
Calcium helps build strong bones and teeth, and plays an important role in helping the circulatory, muscular, and nervous systems work properly. Pregnant and breastfeeding women should get 1,000 mg of calcium a day. Healthy sources of calcium include low-fat dairy products, calcium-fortified orange juice and milk-alternatives, cereals, and kale.
Eating carbohydrates helps provide energy to support the growth and development of a baby and, after delivery, breastfeeding. The best sources of carbs are whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, which also are good sources of fiber. Try to limit refined carbs like white flour and white rice and added sugars.
Fiber is a nutrient that can help ease the constipation thats common during pregnancy. Whole grains and fruits, vegetables, and legumes are good sources of fiber.
Folic acid helps with the development of a baby’s brain and spinal cord. It’s also needed to make red blood cells and white blood cells. Women who get at least 400 micrograms of folic acid daily before conception and during early pregnancy can reduce the risk that their baby will be born with a neural tube defect .
What If I Follow A Special Diet
If you are a vegan, a vegetarian, or follow any other kind of special diet due to food intolerances or religious reasons you may not be getting enough of certain nutrients from diet alone. For example, you may find it difficult to get enough iron or vitamin B12 through food alone. Let your doctor know about your dietary habits and she will be able to check what additional supplements you may need to take.
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Whole Foods Are Better Than Supplements
We cant overemphasize this enough, supplements cannot replace whole foods and a healthy diet. They cant give you or replicate all of the nutrients and benefits of whole plant foods and a healthy diet.
Whole plant foods are foods that you take according to how they are in nature. You dont process or remove any part of the plant. Examples are fruits, veggies, legumes, roots, and tubers, and herbs/spices.
Plants that have gone through processing are no more whole and they are less healthy. Example white flour is not healthy as compared to whole wheat flour.
Whole plant foods have many advantages over supplements, but here are 3 of them.
1. Whole plant foods are complex. They contain a lot of nutrients, micronutrients, and phytochemicals that your body needs.
2. They contain essential fiber. Whole plant foods like whole grains, legumes, fruits, and vegetables contain lots of nutrients and dietary fiber that can help with gestational diabetes, type II diabetes, colorectal cancer, heart disease, and stroke.
3. They have phytochemicals which are protective substances that prevent damage and improve overall health. An example of these protective substances is antioxidants.
When To Take Prenatal Vitamins
Prenatal vitamins arent just for pregnant peopletheyre for people trying to get pregnant, too. ACOG recommends taking a prenatal vitamin that contains at least 400 micrograms of folic acid at least one month before becoming pregnant.
Begin taking prenatal vitamins when you start tryingdont wait until youre pregnant, says Mary Jane Minkin, M.D., clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Connecticut. I encourage all my patients to take folic acid supplementation before they conceiveat least 400 micrograms per dayas we know that women on folic acid supplementation can significantly reduce the risk of certain birth defects like spina bifida.
And even if youre not trying to conceive, if youre not using contraception, you could become pregnant if youre having sex, she says, adding if youre not using contraception, you should take a prenatal vitamin just in case.
|Compare Best Prenatal Vitamins For 2021|
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Supplements To Avoid While Pregnant Or Breastfeeding
While the vitamins and supplements above are generally considered safe for pregnant and nursing mothers, certain plants and herbs can potentially be harmful while pregnant or breastfeeding. Thats why you must always let your doctor know about any supplements you take.
According to the American Pregnancy Association, avoid these plants and herbs while pregnant or breastfeeding:
- saw palmetto
Herbal Supplements Can Help With Ailments With Caution
In addition to micronutrients, herbal supplements are popular.
One 2019 study found that 15.4 percent of pregnant women in the United States use herbal supplements. However not all disclose to their physicians theyre taking them.
While some herbal supplements may be safe to take during pregnancy, there are far more that might not be.
Although some herbs can help with common pregnancy ailments like nausea and upset stomach, some may be harmful to both you and baby.
Unfortunately, there isnt much research regarding the use of herbal supplements by pregnant people, and much is unknown about how the supplements can affect you.
The safest bet? Keep your doctor in the know about any and all changes to your eating plan and supplements.
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Should Women Take Supplements While Pregnant
It seems there’s an endless amount of online information related to what supplements a woman should take when pregnant. As a result, searching for reliable information related to supplements during pregnancy can be difficult at best.
Here’s a Q& A with some advice on which supplements you can use and those you should avoid during your pregnancy:
Are dietary supplements OK during pregnancy?
It’s recommended that women should not use dietary and herbal supplements during pregnancy. In addition, dietary and herbal supplements should be used with caution in women of reproductive age due to the risk of taking these supplements before knowledge of pregnancy.
Unlike prescription drugs, dietary supplements are not reviewed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for safety and effectiveness. As a result, they may contain contaminants, like metals, pesticides, chemicals or bacteria, which may pose risks for pregnancy. Also, most supplements are not thoroughly studied, which can lead to issues related to quality standards for ingredients and strength. For example, vinpocetine an ingredient found in a number of dietary supplements, including those marketed for weight loss, enhanced memory, focus, mental acuity or increased energy is not safe during pregnancy. Other commonly used supplements that may cause harm during pregnancy include melatonin and St. John’s wort.
What about meal replacement shakes?
What supplements are OK to take?
What about vitamins during pregnancy?
Which Foods Are High In Folic Acid
You can get folic acid in broccoli, peas, kale, brussel sprouts, oranges and brown rice . Its also added to some breakfast cereals.
Watch out for folic acid being lost when you cook vegetables. Boil for as little time as possible or steam or microwave instead . For more about what to eat and what not to eat when you’re pregnant, see here.
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Supplements To Avoid During Pregnancy
While supplements are good for pregnancy, some should be avoided because they have adverse side effects and may do more harm than good.
1. Vitamin A
This supplement is included in the prenatal vitamins so you dont need a separate one because too much vitamin A can be harmful to your fetus.
But just a little quantity of vitamin A is needed for the development of fetal vision.
It is also needed to build their immune system. An excess amount of vitamin A can damage your liver and cause birth defects. So you should get your vitamin A from diet and prenatal vitamins.
2. Vitamin E
Vitamin E is both an antioxidant and a vitamin, it is involved in many processes in the body including immune function and gene expression.
Excessive intake of vitamin E has been linked to an increased risk of abdominal pain and even premature rupture of the amniotic sack.
3. Some herbs
While some herbs like ginger are beneficial during pregnancy, others are not. They can increase your risks of contraction, hypertension, induce premature labor, and even affect the fetus. Some herbs you shouldnt take during pregnancy are:
- Black cohosh
Tips For Choosing The Best Prenatal Vitamin
There are plenty of prenatal vitamin supplements on the market so how do you pick the best one? Your individual needs may differ, so its best to work directly with your doctor when deciding on the right prenatal vitamin for you.
In the meantime, here are a few tips to help you choose the best prenatal vitamin:
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Nature Made Prenatal Multivitamin
|Buy on LuckyVitamin|
Ingredients: The Nature Made Prenatal contains essential vitamins and minerals, including folic acid, calcium, iron and vitamin D. These vitamins provide 200 milligrams of DHA to support fetal brain and eye development, making them ideal for pregnant women and women trying to get pregnant.
What we like: Nature Made Prenatal multivitamins are free of preservatives, synthetic dyes and gluten, and the company states its Prenatal Multi + DHA multivitamin is clinically proven for absorption into the body.
What to consider: While these prenatal vitamins offer complete prenatal multivitamin support, they do have a strong smell that many LuckyVitamin reviewers found unpleasant or fishy.
Which Vitamins Are Good For Pregnancy
However while youre pregnant, or theres an opportunity you would possibly get pregnant, its necessary to additionally take a folic acid complement. It is really helpful that you simply take: 400 micrograms of folic acid day-after-day from earlier than you are pregnant till you are 12 weeks pregnant that is to cut back the danger of issues within the childs growth within the early weeks of being pregnant. It is usually really helpful that you simply take a every day vitamin d complement. An excessive amount of vitamin a may hurt your child.
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Solimo Prenatal Vitamins & Dha
Why its great: These prenatal gummies are very candy-like. Theyre gummy, sweet, and have a sugary coating. Plus, youll get your average run of the mill prenatal vitamins that you need, but at a more affordable price as they are an Amazon brand. No fluffs, or specialty here, just a well balanced, prenatal multivitamin that tastes good. It covers all the bases of a prenatal multivitamin without adding thirty bucks to your next pharmacy bill.
Keep in mind: Like most gummy prenatal vitamins they do not have iron and are made from animal products, so I would not encourage this for vegetarians or women in need of iron.
Good for: Women of average health who do not need to spend extra money on a fancy prenatal vitamin.
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Best On A Budget: Deva Prenatal Vitamins
With this Consumer Lab-approved prenatal, you can check a lot of boxes. This multivitamin contains all of the nutrients recommended by ACOG with the exception of omega-3 fatty acids.
At only 14 cents per tablet, it is a third-party approved and inexpensive choice for a prenatal supplement.
Keep in mind, though, that you may want to add an omega-3 supplement or work with your doctor to make sure you’re getting enough in your diet. Foods high in omega-3s include flax and chia seeds, herring, salmon, walnuts, tofu and edamame.
âBuy it:â âPrice:â $12.64 for 90 tablets
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Best Prenatal Vitamin Options For Moms
The Best Prenatal Vitamin Options for Moms will contain the necessary nutrients for a healthy pregnancy and the growing baby. While prenatal vitamins are available in powder form, liquid in a capsule, and gummy forms, there are certain factors to consider when choosing one. Some women may be sensitive to fishy flavors, and if you are, you should look for a different prenatal vitamin option. Regardless of the form, it is important to ensure you are getting enough B vitamins to meet your dietary requirements.
The Best Prenatal Vitamin Options for Moms should be easily absorbed by moms and babies and should be able to help minimize morning sickness. These vitamin supplements can be purchased in a pill, soft-gel capsule, or gummy form. A pill may be more difficult for some women to swallow, but gummies are easier to digest. The best options will also have iron, which is especially important during pregnancy.
Best Prenatal Vitamin Options For Moms
Taking a daily prenatal vitamin is beneficial for a new mom. Many brands offer a range of benefits, including lower prices, convenience, and taste. The Best Prenatal Vitamin Options for Moms are the ones that provide all the essential nutrients that a mother needs, so its important to do your research before choosing the one that is right for you. Fortunately, there are a few options for pregnant women.