Getting Pregnant

The Essential Prenatal Vitamins

Guest post from Juli Novotny Goddard of BasilHealth, a consumer health technology company dedicated to helping people worldwide take better control of their health.

Eating a diet abundant in nutrient dense foods is always a wise idea—especially during pregnancy. Our bodies need more nutrition during those critical months due to the extra workload.

So far, research has been focused on folic acid, iron, iodine, DHA, and calcium as being the most vital prenatal vitamins. These vitamins and minerals are found in poultry, fish, dairy, and plant-based foods. However, due to various factors—such as not eating enough or problems digesting foods—sometimes our diet simply isn’t enough. As a result, most doctors recommend taking a prenatal vitamin to help cover any nutritional gaps in an expectant mother’s diet. In some cases, your doctor may prescribe you a specific supplement when needed. It’s important to be sure you’re not getting too much of one mineral or vitamin during pregnancy either. So ask be sure to discuss your diet with your doctor.

Experts recommend that you start taking prenatal vitamins prior to conceiving. And if you’re already pregnant, start taking them ASAP. If your first appointment isn’t for awhile, call your provider to ask them for advice.

This goes for you diet as well: pack in the nutrients and get as healthy as possible prior to pregnancy. Not only does research show that food and fertility go hand in hand, but come first trimester, you have a 50 percent chance of experiencing morning sickness. This often means you can’t stomach any food, let alone healthy vegetables and fruits.

This is yet another reason to supplement—if a healthy diet isn’t something you can control right now, you can attempt to get some of the essential nutrients via a few simple pills.

Note: From one mother to another, some prenatal vitamins can cause nausea in an already nauseous pregnant woman. Others can cause constipation. You might want to try a few to see which you like best. Sometimes women can’t get a large vitamins down without throwing up; others don’t like the taste of a liquid, and some prefer a smoothie boost.

Sharee Loeffler

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