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Pregnancy is a remarkable journey filled with excitement, anticipation, and, of course, numerous changes to your body. During this time, it’s crucial to prioritize your health and that of your growing baby. One way to do this is by incorporating prenatal vitamins into your daily routine. In this guide, we’ll explore the ins and outs of prenatal vitamins, shedding light on their importance, what to look for, some of our favorites, and how to make the most of these essential supplements.

Why Are Prenatal Vitamins Important and What Should You Look For?

Prenatal vitamins are designed to fill potential nutrient gaps in a pregnant woman’s diet. Here’s why they’re so crucial and what to look for to choose the right one:

1.  Folate for Neural Tube Development: Folic acid (or its natural form, folate) is vital in preventing neural tube defects in the developing baby’s brain and spinal cord. The CDC states “In order to help prevent NTDs, women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant should… make sure they are taking a supplement every day that contains 400 mcg of folic acid, in addition to eating foods with folate from a varied diet.” – Center for Disease Control

2. Iron for Red Blood Cells: Iron helps your body meet the new demands of extra blood volume, the developing placenta, and your growing baby. An increase in iron will help prevent anemia. It is recommended for the average pregnant women to have 30 mg of iron per day to meet these needs. Here are more ways to incorporate iron into your diet. 

3. Calcium for Strong Bones: Calcium supports the development of your baby’s bones, teeth, heart, muscles, and nerves. Pregnant women need about 1,000 milligrams of calcium a day.

4. Iodine for Thyroid Function: Iodine is necessary for healthy thyroid function, brain, skeletal and central nervous development. Because iodine is so crucial for your baby’s development it is recommended that pregnant women get   220 mcg per day during pregnancy, and 290 mcg per day while breastfeeding. 

5. Omega-3 Fatty Acids for Brain Development: DHA, an omega-3 fatty acid, aids in the development of your baby’s brain and eyes. Omega-3 fatty acid is not always found in a prenatal so an additional supplement might be necessary. Aim for 200 mg in your diet each day. 

6. Vitamin D: Vitamin D is essential for calcium absorption and bone health. Ensure your supplement contains around 600-1,000 IU.

7. Other Important Nutrients: Your prenatal vitamin should also contain vitamins C, A, E, and B-complex vitamins like B1, B2, B3, B6, and B12.

Some of Our Favorites*:

Thorne Basic Prenatal

  • Why we love it: This prenatal has great ingredients and is well tested and loved by doctors and midwives.

Garden of Life Prenatal Multivitamin 

  • Why we love it: This prenatal has all the important things including folate, iron, vitamin C and probiotics.

Ritual Prenatal 

  • Why we love it: This prenatal contains Folate & Choline for Neural Tube Support, Omega-3 DHA for Fetal Brain Development, Iron, Calcium-Helper D3 & K2, Non-GMO, Citrus Essences and is Vegan

Theralogix TheraNatal One Prenatal Vitamin

  • Why we love it: This prenatal Multivitamin has DHA, Vitamin D3, Methylated Folate, Iron, Iodine & More to Support a Healthy Pregnancy

Making the Most of Your Prenatal Vitamins: 

Taking prenatal vitamins is not enough; it’s essential to maximize their effectiveness:

1. Consistency is Key: Take your prenatal vitamin daily, ideally with a meal to enhance absorption.

2. Consult Your Healthcare Provider: Always consult your healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen. They can provide personalized guidance based on your unique needs.

3. Balanced Diet: Prenatal vitamins are meant to complement a healthy diet, not replace it. Continue to eat a balanced and nutritious diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins.

4. Avoid Overdosing: More is not always better. Avoid taking additional vitamin supplements without consulting your healthcare provider, as excessive intake can have adverse effects.

5. Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water to help your body absorb the vitamins and minerals efficiently.

Prenatal vitamins are a crucial part of a healthy pregnancy journey. They fill nutrient gaps, ensuring both you and your baby receive the essential vitamins and minerals required for a smooth and healthy pregnancy. When chosen and used wisely, prenatal vitamins become a supportive ally on your path to motherhood. Always remember, though, that prenatal vitamins are just one piece of the puzzle. A balanced diet, regular prenatal care, and a healthy lifestyle are equally essential components of a successful and joyful pregnancy.


*Please consult with a healthcare professional before making any changes to your prenatal vitamin regimen, as individual needs may vary.

*Please note that some of the links in this blog post are affiliate links. This means that if you click on one of these links and make a purchase, we may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. We only recommend products and services that we have personally used or believe will add value to our readers. Your support helps us keep this blog running and allows us to continue providing valuable content. Thank you for your support!

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