Pregnancy is one of the best things that can happen in a woman’s life. Motherhood begins upon conception and the body’s nutritional needs will increase as the baby grows inside the womb. This is where prenatal vitamins come in. Most, if not all, doctors highly recommend these vitamins to women who are pregnant and those who wish to conceive.
Best Over-the-Counter Prenatal Vitamins
Prenatal vitamins are specially formulated to fill in the nutritional gaps in your body. Since you are now providing for your baby’s needs, taking prenatal supplements are essential. Proper prenatal care will help reduce pregnancy-related health risks, such as iron deficiency anemia, neural tube defects, and early onset osteoporosis in moms. This article will guide you to the most important things that you need to know about prenatal vitamins. However, you should know that it is necessary to speak with your doctor first before taking any vitamins and/or medications.
Regular VS Prenatal Vitamins
Experts recommend three essential vitamins and minerals for a healthy pregnancy. The main difference between regular and prenatal vitamins is that the latter contains all the right amounts of vitamins and minerals that pregnant women need. Regular vitamins, on the other hand, are formulated to supply the nutritional needs of non-pregnant individuals.
Good quality prenatal supplements should contain the following:
- Folic acid, more known as Vitamin B9, helps decrease your risk of spina bifida, birth defects, and anencephaly. The Center for Disease Control highly recommends women in their childbearing age to consume 0.4 milligrams of folic acid. Prenatal vitamins normally contain more than this.
- Iron helps your body fight anemia. The CDC recommends at least 27 milligrams of iron daily for pregnant women, while the non-pregnant can take 18 milligrams.
- Calcium allows your body to have more bone protection, helping prevent or delay the onset of osteoporosis. Both pregnant and non-pregnant women need at least 1,300 milligrams per day.
You will find most of these components in a regular vitamin. Their difference is only the amount of vitamins and nutrients they contain, especially these three essentials. Giving your body all of its nutritional needs during pregnancy will help you and your child live a healthy life.
Your doctor will sometimes prescribe prenatal vitamins that will not be available without a prescription. The good news is that you can now choose among the wide variety of over-the-counter prenatals, but how do you know which one to take? Below are the list of the seven best over-the-counter prenatal vitamins that you can consider.
Prenatalgyn is a popular prenatal supplement because of its high folic acid, iron, and calcium content. It also contains over 22 key vitamins and minerals, as well as 10 probiotics, DHA, CoQ10, inositol, ginger root, and choline. This product, which has a starting price of $39.95, may be more expensive that the regular prenatals, but the extra benefits make it a worthy choice.
2. New Chapter
The New Chapter prenatal supplement is certified non-GMO and organic. Vegan women can take note of this product as it is guaranteed safe for them to consume. Instead of folic acid, this product contains folate, which is the organic counterpart of vitamin B6. It also does not have the usual smell that these vitamins have.
You can consume it on an empty stomach, but it would always help to take it with food to reduce the chances of upset tummy or nausea. The ideal dosage is three times daily. Since this supplement is much smaller than the average pill, then swallowing will not be a problem.
3. Nature Made
The Nature Made softgels contain both 150 milligrams of Omega-3 fish oil and multivitamins. It is capable of meeting both your folic acid and iron requirements, as well as the other vitamins and minerals needed by your body. If you are somebody who is having difficulty in swallowing pills, then you will be delighted to know that this supplement is only taken once a day. The only possible downside is its faint fishy smell that may or may not affect you.
Proviq is designed with the mother and the little one inside in mind. It contains 27 powerful prenatal vitamins and minerals that pregnant women need. Not only does it provide doctor-recommended ingredients, but it is also designed to support your infant’s health throughout your pregnancy.
5. TwinLab Pre-Natal Care
This prenatal supplement has all the 22 essential nutrients for both pregnant and nursing mothers. The basic vitamins and minerals, from iron to folic acid, have been included to help you and your baby enjoy healthier lives. The main reason why this brand is so popular is its Ferrochel content, which is a unique type of iron that does not cause any of the usual side effects associated with iron supplements.
Pregnant women who are having difficulty in swallowing pills may find this product investment worthy. The Bellybar contains chewable vitamins that taste and smell similar with the then-famous Flintstones vitamins. They basically taste like candy, but without the artificial aspartame or artificial dyes. These prenatals are ideally taken twice a day, one in the morning and another in the evening. Since they are chewable, they are easy to digest and should not cause any stomach problems.
Vitafusion are little prenatal gummies that expecting mothers will definitely love. These supplements contain Omega-3 fish oil, allowing you to enjoy the benefits of DHA. However, Vitafusion does not have iron, which may either be a plus or minus for you. Because of its absence, this product should not cause any stomach problems. Pregnant ladies who are sensitive to iron may benefit from this one.
Important Tips to Remember
Women who are pregnant or trying to conceive should consider asking their trusted doctor about taking prenatal vitamins. These supplements are capable of keeping you and your baby healthy as they contain all the necessary vitamins and minerals. The ideal daily dosage will depend on the prenatal vitamins that you plan to take, but should not be more than three times a day.
With so many options to choose from, the decision making process can be overwhelming. The seven best over-the-counter prenatal vitamins discussed above are guaranteed safe and effective. It is still best, however, to get the go signal of your doctor before taking any supplement or medication.
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