Your Health

Your Guide to Prenatal Vitamins

Your Guide to Prenatal Vitamins

Prenatal vitamins can play an essential role in your unborn baby’s development, alongside providing you with important health support throughout your pregnancy.

 

If you’re expecting your first baby, it can be hard to know where to start when it comes to pregnancy vitamins and what you should be eating. That’s why we’ve compiled this guide to the pregnancy vitamins you need to take note of, as well as how to follow a healthy pregnancy diet.

 

What prenatal vitamins should I take?

 

There’s a lot of information out there about the best prenatal vitamins, but ultimately, the two most important are folic acid and vitamin D.

 

Folic acid

 

Folic acid is a B vitamin, and it plays an important role in the development of a foetus’ brain and spine in early pregnancy. It’s recommended that expectant mothers take 400 micrograms of folic acid daily until they are 12 weeks pregnant.

 

Some women may need to take more folic acid or to continue taking it after this point – check with your GP to see if you fall into this category.

 

Vitamin D

 

Vitamin D can help to support bone health during pregnancy; it’s especially important to take a vitamin D supplement if you’re pregnant between September and March, when there isn’t as much natural sunlight, which is one of the best sources of vitamin D.

 

If you want to keep boosting your vitamin D intake after giving birth, our mykind Organics Vegan Vitamin D3 Spray is an easy way to incorporate it into your day as you learn to juggle life with a little one. Just make sure it’s only you taking it, as our vitamin sprays aren’t suitable for children under four.

 

 

When to start taking prenatal vitamins

 

Some women choose to start taking prenatal vitamins when they’re trying to conceive. However, it’s advised that you begin taking them as soon as you know you’re pregnant.

 

As we explained earlier, you might not need to take folic acid all throughout your pregnancy, but check with your GP or midwife to find out when it’s safe you to stop.

 

healthy pregnant woman

 

Foods to eat during pregnancy

 

Following a healthy pregnancy diet is essential for making sure that both you and your baby are getting all of the nutrients and vitamins you need.

 

Foods to eat during pregnancy include:

 

  • High-calcium foods, such as pasteurised milk, hard cheese, tofu, broccoli, cabbage and yoghurt, which can be a good source of live cultures to support your gut health
  • Legumes including chickpeas, lentils and soybeans naturally contain fibre, iron, protein and calcium, which are all essential during pregnancy
  • Omega-3 fatty acids can play an important role in the development of your baby’s eyes and brain. Omega-3 fatty acids can be found in fatty fish, but it’s advised that you limit your seafood intake to just twice a week during pregnancy. This is because some fish such as tuna can contain potentially harmful contaminants from the ocean, including mercury
  • Vitamin C-rich foods help your body to absorb iron. Citrus fruits and berries are good examples of foods with a high vitamin C content
  • Vitamin D-rich foods to increase your intake further, such as egg yolks, hard cheese, mushrooms and fatty fish (remember to be mindful of your consumption – see advice on omega-3 fatty acids)

 

Foods to avoid in pregnancy

 

There are some foods that should be avoided in pregnancy as they could cause harm to an unborn baby. These include:

 

  • Raw fish, such as sushi
  • Unpasteurised milk, cheese, and fruit juice
  • Pâte
  • Undercooked meat
  • Game

 

Be mindful of eating cold or cured meats during pregnancy too, as there is a small risk that they can carry harmful bacteria.

 

You should also take care to wash all soil off fresh vegetables before eating to protect your own health and that of your unborn baby.

 

Prenatal support from Garden of Life

 

As well as taking the recommended prenatal vitamins and following a healthy diet during pregnancy, you should also look into the health benefits of taking prenatal gut health supplements.

 

At Garden of Life, our Microbiome Once Daily Prenatal Capsules contain 16 different live bacteria strains designed to support the health of you and your baby, during both pregnancy and breastfeeding.

 

These prenatal microbiome supplements are vegetarian, gluten-free, dairy-free and soy-free, and they’re designed to be taken just once a day.

 

 

Consuming a variety of live cultures can help to balance the good and bad bacteria, which could contribute to alleviating feelings of nausea, and could have a positive impact on your wider immune system too.

 

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2020-01-22 15:28:46By Garden of Life



Garden of Life

Garden of Life

Writer and expert