Pregnancy is an extraordinary time for you and your family. For accurate cell division and growth to have the fuel required, both you and baby are going to need all the minerals, vitamins and other nutrients that you can get. In a perfect world, you’d be able to get those from your diet, but you’re most probably a busy, overwhelmed mum-to-be with indigestion, nausea, cravings and other hurdles.
This is where vitamins for pregnancy or prenatal vitamins come in. According to obstetricians, dieticians, and midwives, these are the vitamins that are most crucial for both you and the baby:
Folic acid-600 micrograms
You have most likely heard chatter about folic acid supplements among pregnant women. Folic acid is the most critical nutrient for your baby. It aids in development of the neural tube, which is the casing that covers the spinal cord. Without folic acid, it will not enclose fully, resulting in severe congenital disabilities. In fact, it is highly recommended to start taking it before you conceive as the neural tube is developed within the first four weeks of pregnancy. Not to worry if you are already a few weeks along, your supplements will help your baby just fine.
Calcium is vital for bone development, and having enough in your body will prevent you from losing your bone density to cater to your baby’s bone growth. It will help both you and baby get strong bones and protect you from annoying leg cramps.
Vitamin D-600 IU
Vitamin D is vital as it helps your body absorb and utilize Calcium. Moreover, it boosts your immune system, cell division, and muscle function. Furthermore, Vitamin D reduces your risks of preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, and preterm birth.
DHA Omega-3 fatty acids help in heart and eye tissue development, not to mention increases the chance of your baby having a high-functioning mind. These also reduce the risks of premature delivery. You may get DHA Omega-3 fatty acids from fish and nuts, but these will not be enough for both you and baby, and most prenatal vitamins do not have it. Thus, you need to obtain a separate omega-3 DHA supplement.
Iron is exceedingly vital in pregnancy. Your body is now transporting oxygen for two, and maternal blood volume tends to increase almost by 50% to cater for this load. Inadequate iron predisposes you and baby to infant anemia, maternal depression, and preterm birth. You should have at least 27mg daily, but your obstetrician should determine the right amount for you to avoid the side effects of excess iron like constipation and abnormally high hemoglobin levels.
Magnesium is an essential mineral in most of the chemical reactions that keep your body running and nerve function. Deficiency in this can cause hypertension, preterm labor, and preterm birth.
These are the essential vitamins that you want to have both in your diet and OTC supplements. However, seeing a doctor is critical in ensuring your nutrition and general health are in order.