Supplements for an Amazing Pregnancy
Part of overall health is always eating right and caring for your body, and at no time is this more important than during pregnancy. In addition to eating a healthful, whole food diet, many women and their care providers find that they feel better and have fewer common pregnancy ailments if they add some whole-food based supplements to their nutritional regiment.
Here are 10 of our favorite supplements for an amazing pregnancy. Be sure to consult with your care provider before adding anything to your diet and try to get a high-quality supplement. Your care provider, midwife, chiropractor, or other health professional will likely have recommendations that are the most effective and safest.
A quality multivitamin simply helps cover your bases and ensures that you get those things that are most necessary during your pregnancy. Look for something that is not synthetic, is easily digested, and comes highly recommended from trusted health care professionals.
Babies need fat. Fat helps feed their growing brain and plays an important part in the bodybuilding the nervous system and helping ensure proper development. A good fish oil is an excellent way to get these fats as your baby is growing their brain.
Magnesium is beneficial to your body in many ways and can help with common pregnancy issues like leg cramps, nausea, and insomnia. It is not uncommon for milk drinkers to have an imbalance of calcium and magnesium, and adding a quality magnesium supplement can help achieve balance. There are even some magnesium supplements specifically tailored to pregnant women.
Science has, of late, noticed a common deficiency in Vitamin D among Americans. Vitamin D will be produced in the body when you are exposed to the sun and is found in some foods naturally, in addition to fortified dairy products. Severe Vitamin D deficiency can cause rickets, a bone disease that has hugely negative results, including issues with childbirth. Vitamin D deficiency is now linked to other serious problems like cancer, asthma, cardiovascular disease, and more. It's something you don't want to be missing in your diet.
A quality probiotic is an important part of gut health, especially during pregnancy. Some improvements people notice when taking probiotics include increased immune function and healthy bowels. Some providers even find that it can help with healthy prevention of group B strep.
More than just taking a supplement, probiotics are so important that adding probiotic rich foods, with a variety of healthy cultures, can help too. Kimchi, kombucha, kefir, yogurt, sauerkraut, miso, and more are probiotic rich foods that can be found at your local health food store. Notice that these foods come from all over the world, showing that this isn’t just a modern fad but a return to more traditional eating.
Grass fed gelatin
Gelatin is found in bones, tissues, and organs of animals, and is something that most Americans tend not to eat, despite the nutritional benefits. Those are the parts of the animal that we throw away. Gelatin, however, can help with skin, digestion, and joints. In addition to making some fun childhood treats with gelatin, it can easily be added to a morning smoothie.
Supplementing with some type of green powder is necessary for most people. Industrial farming combined with a diet low in healthy greens, means that most of us don’t get what we need in nutrient dense green foods.
A good green powder supplement may contain: spinach, alfalfa, kale, wheat grass, algae, spirulina, broccoli, and other greens rich in chlorophyll, phytonutrients, digestive enzymes and more. They can help with nutrient absorption and overall feelings of health.
Flax seed is fibrous, and rich in healthy fats and lignans. They can help with brain development and estrogen balance. Flax is relatively cheap, and, along with many of these other whole food supplements, can easily be added to a morning smoothie or baked into food.
High quality protein powder (as needed)
Protein is an important part of any diet, and especially so when pregnant. If your diet is carbohydrate heavy, as it is for many Americans, or pregnancy nausea is intense enough that getting adequate protein is difficult, then a quality protein powder may be a helpful addition to your diet. There are so many good options available now including vegan and soy free protein powders made from plants, beans, and legumes.
If you are already getting adequate protein in your diet (somewhere around 80 grams per day, depending on weight, lifestyle, and your needs) then a supplemental protein powder isn’t necessary.
Notice that most of these supplements are whole food based and can easily be added to your diet with just a little forethought and planning. Maybe marking a specific time every morning to take some supplements will help you make these healthy choices habit. Adding a morning smoothie that contains your flax seeds, protein powder, gelatin, and greens, can help you hit many birds with one stone.
Sometimes pregnancy is thought of as a time to “eat right,” when in reality, it can be motivation to make incredible lifestyle changes that lead to long term health improvements far beyond pregnancy.