Prenatal Vitamins are very important to fill the nutritional gaps during pregnancy. Pregnant women often lack optimum nutrition. It doesn’t matter if you are the healthiest person on the planet or not. Even the healthiest of individuals can lack in some form of nutrients at a point of time. During pregnancy, you can’t afford to suffer from a nutritional deficiency even for a day. This is where Prenatal vitamins set their importance.
Research has proven that most women do not meet their requirements of Calcium, Iron and Vitamin B1. (1) Lack of proper knowledge regarding pregnancy nutrition (in both developing, developed and underdeveloped countries alike) also poses a threat to the future generation being born with genetic problems. Not to forget the pregnancy complications that arise with it. Therefore, it’s important to meet your daily value of all the nutrients during pregnancy. Let’s look at some of the best Prenatal Vitamins available in the market.
Why are Prenatal Vitamins important?
Prenatal Vitamins are rich in some nutrients which multi vitamins lack. They fulfill the special nutrient needs for pregnant women to promote healthy growth of the fetus and help take care of the mother’s body too.
All Prenatal Vitamins have almost 100% DV of both Iron and Folic acid. Folic acid is important in early stages of pregnancy to help prevent birth defects in baby’s spinal cord and brain. Folic acid plays a very important role at the time of conception too which is why many doctors recommend starting with your supplements when you are trying.
Iron in pregnancy, on the other hand, helps in circulation of nutrients and oxygen to the fetus. It also helps in healthy functioning of the cardiovascular system. It’s important to maintain iron levels throughout pregnancy if not before.
There is a recent study that has proved that Vitamin B3, something Prenatal Vitamins are again rich in, help prevent miscarriages and birth defects. (2)
What should I look for while I am buying Prenatal Vitamins?
Look for the nutrients mentioned above like Folate, Iron, B-vitamins, Calcium etc. Also, look for the serving size of the capsules i.e how many you need to take for procuring the mentioned nutrients. Some vitamins need you to have 2 capsules in a day while for others just 1 a day is sufficient.
What if I am unable to take Prenatal Vitamins due to morning sickness?
Many women are not able to take Prenatal Vitamins due to morning sickness. Doctors recommend them to either mix it in the powder form in your food or smoothies or taking gummy vitamins to help prevent nausea.
Eating something salty or sugary can also help. Have some crackers, makhana a.k.a fox nuts, chiwda etc. before taking the capsule.
Iron in the Prenatal Vitamin can sometimes cause constipation. To increase absorption of Iron, take a Vitamin C rich fruit or food along with the tablet. Gulping down your vitamin with orange or lime juice is a good idea too. To prevent constipation make sure that you having a fiber rich diet and drinking lots of water.
What are the best prenatal vitamins available in India?
Here are 7 best Prenatal Vitamins available in India:
Summit Nutrition Organic Prenatal Vitamins
Buy here for Rs1290/-.
MegaFood Baby & Me
Buy here for Rs.4628/-.
Rainbow Light Prenatal One Multivitamin
Buy here for $41.99. (Delivers to India)
NatureMade Prenatal Multivitamin with DHA
Buy here for $17. (Delivers to India)
New Chapter Prenatal Vitamins with Probiotics
Buy here for $21.89. (Delivers to India)
Gummy Vitamins for those who are not able to take Prenatals due to morning sickness.
Nature’s Way Alive Prenatal Vitamins
Buy here for Rs.2520/-.
Vitafusion Prenatal Gummy Vitamins
Buy here for Rs.2391/-.
Should I opt for any other supplements apart from my daily vitamins?
Most prenatal vitamins lack Omega 3 fatty acids, Calcium and Vitamin D.
Omega 3’s helps in the development of baby’s nervous system. They also aid in the cognitive development of the baby. They also have a positive effect on the pregnancy itself by reducing the risk of preeclampsia, mood disorders, and Postpartum depression. It’s very important that you supplement with Omega 3’s especially if you are a vegetarian or don’t eat fish on a daily basis.
Calcium is generally don’t present in large amounts in prenatal vitamins. Pregnant Women generally don’t have to supplement with Calcium. Most of them get their DV Calcium with their diet. Do consult your doctor if are planning to start a Calcium supplement. Your doctor will only recommend Calcium if your current levels are low or if your diet is restricted in any way.
Vitamin D supplementation also depends on your current levels of the nutrient and the amount of Vitamin D prenatal vitamin has. Benefits of Vitamin D during pregnancy are yet not fully known but there have been several studies that have linked the nutrient’s levels to a decreased risk of autism, Bacterial Vaginosis, efficient glucose metabolism etc.
A healthy pregnancy does constitute of a prenatal vitamin. Some women, in fact, start taking the prenatal when they are trying to get pregnant. Optimum Nutrition is key to fertility too. So, Prenatal Vitamins do hold a very crucial role in your whole journey for pregnancy.