What To Look for In A Prenatal Vitamin

You just found out you’re pregnant or you’re actively trying to get pregnant—now what? Even if you’ve been pregnant before, you probably have questions about how to support you and your baby’s health during this special time. For many pregnant women, the answer is pretty simple: take a high-quality prenatal vitamin.

Prenatal vitamins are a convenient way to make sure you and your baby get all of the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients you need to support a healthy pregnancy and optimal fetal development. But they aren’t all made equally.

You might have noticed there are tons of prenatal vitamins for expecting moms to choose from. Many have different combinations of vital nutrients, different forms to consume them, and different benefits for mom and baby. But don’t worry, when it comes to making the best choice—the ingredients often speak for themselves!

Vitamins and other nutrients during pregnancy

Every pregnancy is different. You and your baby’s needs won’t exactly mirror any other expecting mom, but there are several vitamins and nutrients that you can count on at least discussing with your OB/GYN or midwife:

  • Folate
  • Choline
  • Iron
  • Calcium
  • Vitamin C

Your body needs each of these vitamins and nutrients to help support a healthy mom and baby! Read on to learn how they work and where to find them.

Roles of B Vitamins in Pregnancy

If you know, you know. And if you don’t, we’re here to tell you that folate is one of the most talked about vitamins for pregnancy—but it’s not the only B vitamin your body needs during this time.

Consuming 400 mcg of folate every day supports healthy neural tube development while your baby grows inside of you. Your baby’s neural tube is the very early stages of their brain and spine development, which is why it’s such an important nutrient during your pregnancy!

You can find folate in dark green leafy vegetables, beans, peas, berries, and more. Lots of grains are also fortified with folic acid, another type of folate, to help make sure we all get as much folate as we need!

Some forms of folate are easier for our bodies to use than others. L-5-methyltetrahydrofolate (L-5-MTHF) is the bioactive form of folate. Since many people have reduced production of the enzyme your body uses to create L-5-MTHF from food folate (dihydrofolate reductase), this gentle form is the easiest for your body to absorb!

Chicken breast, potatoes, milk, egg yolks, and other foods are rich in choline, another B vitamin that expecting mothers need. Like folate, choline is also great for nourishing fetal brain development. It works by supporting cellular growth and division, while also encouraging healthy hippocampus development. The hippocampus plays a significant role in learning, memory, and attention span, so getting adequate levels of choline is essential for moms-to-be!

Iron

Did you know that your body produces almost 50% more blood when you’re pregnant? This extra blood flow helps make sure your heart and blood vessels can support healthy circulation for both you and baby, and iron is an essential nutrient to help support your body with this increased demand.

Consuming enough iron is essential for maintaining healthy red blood cell production. This is because your liver stores iron for blood cell production. When your body needs new red blood cells, your liver sends iron to your bone marrow where red blood cells are produced.

Keeping your iron levels in the optimal range is key, since too much iron can be detrimental. Your OB/GYN or healthcare provider should monitor your status and advise if you need more. If so, poultry, red meat, beans, and fortified cereal are reliable sources to increase your iron intake. In many cases, supplements are the easiest way to get the right amount of blood-building iron!

Production of new blood cells: Iron, liver, bone marrow, red blood cells

Calcium

Strong bones and teeth are of lifelong importance for both mom and baby. They help you stay active and eat a healthy diet so you can make the most of each and every day—which will come in handy once it’s time to take your little one on a walk or to the playground!

A diet rich in calcium nourishes bones and teeth while also helping your baby develop a healthy nervous system. It also supports healthy musculoskeletal and circulatory system development.

Do you remember the ‘Got milk?’ ads from the 90s? They were for kids, but it turns out they should have focused on pregnant women, too! Dairy milk is a great source for dietary calcium, but you can also find calcium in other foods like spinach, almonds, and white beans.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C helps support an overall healthy pregnancy. It encourages healthy placental development and is great for healthy red blood cell development, too!

There's probably an abundance of vitamin C right in your kitchen. Orange juice and oranges are great for boosting vitamin C levels, but you can also find it in other citrus fruits, tomatoes, strawberries, broccoli, and more.

Prenatal vitamins: Why they matter, how to choose

Most women benefit from daily prenatal vitamins to support healthy pregnancy and fetal development. They help fill in the gaps in your diet, especially if you’re having tummy troubles or food aversions. The nutrients in prenatal vitamins help support healthy brain, tissue, and bone development, and other aspects of healthy fetal growth, plus a healthy pregnancy for mom.

Walk into any store looking for a prenatal vitamin and you’re probably going to be overwhelmed. There are so many options! Choosing the prenatal vitamin that’s right for you can be tough, but it helps if you know what you’re looking for.

Folate, choline, iron, calcium, and vitamin C are essential nutrients to have during this special time, but the quality of those nutrients is the most important thing to pay attention to as you weigh your prenatal options. Here are some things to keep an eye out for:

  • Made with organic, non-GMO ingredients
  • Fermented nutrients for optimal absorption and digestive ease
  • Bioavailable folate
  • Tested for heavy metals and microbial contamination
  • Enhanced with phytonutrients from organic sprouts and berries
  • Vegan and gluten-free, so it works for any lifestyle

Wait…that sounds awfully familiar– PureNatal® is all of these things and more! Crafted with the highest-quality ingredients and the utmost care, this prenatal vitamin complex gives you one less thing to worry about. And as a mom-to-be, we know that’s precious.

 

Disclaimer: As with most nutritional supplementation, it’s always a good idea to talk to your OB/GYN or midwife to determine which choices are best for you.

4 Months ago