Prenatal vitamins: Why they matter, how to choose

Prenatal vitamins: Why they make a difference, how to select

Speculate if you require to take prenatal vitamins? Or what to do if they make you constipated? Get solutions to these thoughts and additional.

By Mayo Clinic Employees

A balanced diet plan is the best way to get the vitamins and minerals you require. But in the course of being pregnant you may well slide shorter on key nutrition. If you might be pregnant or hoping to conceive, prenatal vitamins can support fill any gaps.

Why are prenatal vitamins essential?

For the duration of being pregnant, you require additional folic acid and iron than common. Here is why:

  • Folic acid helps reduce neural tube flaws. These flaws are major abnormalities of the fetal brain and spinal cord. Ideally, you’ll start off having extra folic acid at least 3 months before you come to be pregnant.
  • Iron supports the advancement of the placenta and fetus. Iron helps your physique make blood to offer oxygen to the fetus. Iron also helps reduce anemia, a problem in which blood has a lower range of balanced pink blood cells.

Which prenatal vitamin is best?

Prenatal vitamins are readily available more than-the-counter in practically any pharmacy. Your wellness treatment supplier may well advise a precise model or go away the alternative up to you.

Beyond checking for folic acid and iron, search for a prenatal vitamin that incorporates calcium and vitamin D. They support promote the advancement of the baby’s tooth and bones. It also may well be beneficial to search for a prenatal vitamin that incorporates vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin E, B vitamins, zinc and iodine.

In addition, your wellness treatment supplier may well recommend greater doses of sure nutrition based on the situations. For illustration, if you have presented delivery to a little one who has a neural tube defect, your wellness treatment supplier may well advise a independent health supplement made up of a greater dose of folic acid — this sort of as 4 milligrams (4,000 micrograms) — before and in the course of any subsequent pregnancies.

But in normal, steer clear of having extra prenatal vitamins or multivitamins with dosing in surplus of what you require on a each day basis. Significant doses of some vitamins may well be unsafe to your little one. For illustration, extra vitamin A in the course of being pregnant can most likely trigger harm to your little one.

Do I require to be anxious about other nutrition?

Omega-3 fatty acids, a type of excess fat discovered the natural way in quite a few forms of fish, support promote a baby’s brain advancement. If you do not eat fish or other foods substantial in omega-3 fatty acids, your wellness treatment supplier may well advise omega-3 fatty acid health supplements in addition to prenatal vitamins.

When really should I begin having prenatal vitamins?

Ideally, you’ll begin having prenatal vitamins before conception. In actuality, it’s typically a very good notion for girls of reproductive age to on a regular basis take a prenatal vitamin. The baby’s neural tube, which results in being the brain and spinal cord, develops in the course of the initial month of being pregnant
— most likely before you even know that you might be pregnant.

Do prenatal vitamins have any facet results?

In some cases the iron in prenatal vitamins contributes to constipation. To reduce constipation:

  • Consume a lot of fluids
  • Contain additional fiber in your diet plan
  • Contain physical action in your each day regime, as lengthy as you have your wellness treatment provider’s Ok
  • Talk to your wellness treatment supplier about making use of a stool softener

If these tips do not seem to be to support, check with your wellness treatment supplier about other solutions.