Most expecting mothers receive the same commands: rest, drink water, and eat well. While those are valid points, did you know that prenatal vitamins are crucial for the health and well-being of a pregnant woman and her baby? Taking prenatal vitamins ensures an unborn child gets the basic nutrients it needs for healthy development.
Why Prenatal Vitamins Benefit Pregnancy
While a balanced diet is non-negotiable for a healthy pregnancy, getting all the vitamins and minerals the body needs while pregnant simply from eating can be difficult. As they say, you’re eating for two; the body needs twice the amount of resources.
If a pregnant woman does not supplement her diet, she may experience decreased levels of certain essential minerals, such as calcium, iron, zinc, and magnesium. Chromium and iodine may also diminish, which could lead to metabolic abnormalities.
Strong research suggests that low mineral levels are firmly connected with many maternal and infant health problems, such as anemia, miscarriage, hypothyroidism, preeclampsia, gestational hypertension, and gestational diabetes. This is why taking prenatal vitamins while pregnant is important, as they supplement the body’s double need for increased nutritional intake.
What Prenatal Vitamins Are Most Important
The first and most crucial vitamin for expecting mothers is folic acid. Folic acid is responsible for the healthy development of the baby’s brain, spinal cord, and organs, and it helps prevent congenital disabilities like spina bifida. It’s recommended that pregnant women take 400mcg of folic acid every day. Folic acid can be found in many prenatal vitamins, as well as leafy green vegetables, fruits, nuts, beans and fortified grains.
Pregnant women should look for vitamins that include iron, calcium, and vitamin D. These vitamins are essential for the baby’s growth while also helping the mother’s body produce red blood cells. Iron works to transport oxygen throughout the body and reduce the risk of anemia, while calcium and vitamin D work to build strong bones and teeth. Vitamin C is also important for immune system health and iron absorption.
Additionally, look for prenatal vitamins that contain vitamins A, B6, and B12. Vitamin A contributes to the development of the baby’s eyes, heart, lungs, and kidneys, while B vitamins contribute to the body’s energy production. Vitamin D is also significant for absorbing calcium and other minerals and helps prevent dehydration.
Talk to The Woman’s Clinic About Prenatal Vitamins
Prenatal vitamins contribute to a healthy pregnancy by providing the vitamins and minerals both mother and baby need throughout the pregnancy. Without taking the proper supplemental quantities of the vitamins and minerals above, there is a higher risk of complications or challenges arising during pregnancy.
Even if this is your second pregnancy, we know every pregnancy is unique. You may need to take different vitamins than what you took the last time or alter the dose of one mineral more than others. Speak with your doctor at The Woman’s Clinic to determine which prenatal vitamins are the best option for you and your growing child.