Prenatal vitamins are just one of many changes a woman will need to make to her life once she sees the little pregnancy stick change before her eyes. It is recommended to help a woman with added nutrition to her diet so that she could house baby safely, as well as stay strong and healthy herself. Taking prenatal vitamins decreases a woman’s chances significantly of having any issues in fetal development, as well as a miscarriage or early labor in many cases.
Of course, nothing is foolproof, and often a woman has to measure the pros and the cons of the prenatal vitamin she is taking to see if it is really helping her and baby overall. Some women experience such uncomfortable side effects that it is hard for them to stay encouraged to take the prenatal vitamins in the first place. However, they usually will for the sake of the baby.
But is there a way to customize the kind of prenatal vitamin she wants to take and the dose and ingredients in it? Of course there are as many different ways as there are women and pregnancies, but it is important that she find her balance. How does she do that? Well, mainly it is through trial and error, and seeing what works for her body. She needs to also check with her medical care practitioner, which goes without saying. If she gets the green light, then the best thing to do is to try and customize her prenatal vitamin intake. Here are 14 ways to do just that:
14 Being Borderline Anemic
Some women are already borderline anemic when they become pregnant or they develop anemia during pregnancy. Anemia arises when the woman is not getting enough protein. She is plagued by headaches, fainting spells and general ill feeling. Other than her regular doctor prescribed multivitamin, she could also benefit from certain other vitamins added to her schedule such as extra iron.
The only problem with this is that the extra iron can cause constipation so a stool softener would be prescribed at the same time. There is nothing worse than feeling weak and having to deal with bathroom issues at the same time. A mother’s fun never ends it seems. Of course, she would need to speak to her doctor about some help on this front. Of course she also needs to look into eating a balanced diet from the four food groups as much as she can, too. Prenatal vitamins are a tool to be added to an already healthy diet.
13 For Sensitive Digestion
Then there are women who have indigestion during pregnancy and experience a lot of problems digesting in general. It is a good idea for them as well to customize their prenatal vitamins according to their individual needs. What are good vitamins for women experiencing trouble digesting? Well, some excellent choices are My Kind Organics and Nature Made. A good rule of thumb, however, when a woman experiences an upset stomach, is to try and take the prenatal vitamin at night so then she is sleeping through the nausea part.
The nausea could be due to morning sickness and the increase of vitamins going into her system. She could also try taking the pills on an empty stomach, or making sure she has them after some coffee and a light breakfast. This could trick her brain into believing it will not be feeling sick with this routine anymore. Usually with trial and error a woman will see what will work for her.
12 Need Extra DHA?
Some other women will take their favorite prenatal multivitamin with a DHA supplement. A lot of women like Nature Made. Some in their brand have soft gels, and unless they break open and leak all over the vitamins, this brand actually doesn’t make women burp up the rest of the day. DHA is a fatty acid made of omega-3. It is essential to fetal brain and eye development, very important, and it helps support the central nervous system of the developing baby.
The March of Dimes recommends pregnant women should get at least 200 milligrams of DHA daily. Many prenatal vitamins contain DHA, but some contain more than others and some women may need more than others, too. She should check with her doctor to be sure what she needs. If she is nervous she is not getting enough Omega 3 fatty acid, she could also take fish oil capsules. The great thing is that they are mercury-free.
11 Different Brands Can Make A Difference
Every woman is a unique individual so it stands to reason that every woman’s body would react differently to certain prenatal vitamins than to others. A brand that would work for one woman may not for another and vice versa. The important thing is that the woman should not be afraid to ask her health care provider for their opinion on tweaking her regime, and on what they feel could work for her. She should also not be afraid to experiment a little, providing she knows that the supplements are safe.
A supplement like Natura Made prenatal vitamins for example, has been approved by medical professionals to be safe throughout pregnancy. All the ingredients were carefully selected so that they can give her body exactly what it needs to have a healthy pregnancy. This product is FDA approved and does not contain artificial dyes, flavors or preservatives. This alone can help women see that they are not limited in what they can take if one brand is not working for them.
10 Capsules Are Sometimes Better
For some women capsules are better for them than tablets. The reason is due to the fact that capsules are easier to swallow than tablets, and if women are experiencing nausea and having trouble eating and swallowing, the ease of capsules would make the whole process go more smoothly. The size of these tablets are compact too which also helps with taking them regularly without any other issues. Not all prenatal vitamins are created equal, so women should not hesitate to check with the medical care practitioner which one is best for her health as he/she will know the balance of nutrients that her body requires.
She also needs to remember that more is not necessarily better when it comes to vitamins. She needs to stick with the recommended dosage for her, according to her doctor. And of course, vitamins are meant as a supplement to a healthy diet, not to replace it.
9 There Are Natural Options
There are so many amazing brands on the market for women who want and need different things from their prenatal vitamins. There are vitamins that are Non-GMO, Natural and Organic. These brands would be: Prenatal Vitamin Organic, Garden of Life Prenatal Vitamin Supplement for vegetarians, Baby and Me Prenatal and Postnatal Baby Support made from organic cranberries and other ingredients, Smarty Pants Prenatal Complete Gummy Vitamins which are non GMO, just to name a few.
It is good for women who have other nutritional concerns to know that they have options to have the best nutritional value they possibly can, and that they and their babies will not have to compromise their principles for anything. Of course they need to check with their doctor or medical care practitioner to make sure that the particular prenatal vitamin they are choosing is right for them, but it’s good to know they have lots of options.
8 Some Women Need More Zinc
Something a lot of women experience with prenatal vitamins is unfortunately a terrible metallic taste in their mouth after taking their daily dose. What many may not be aware of is that more zinc may actually be good for fighting that metallic taste. It is also really good for vegetarians to have more zinc in their prenatal vitamin. This along with vitamin B6 is beneficial to balance out their nutrients since they are not getting protein from meat so they must get it from other vegetable sources.
Zinc also supports the woman’s immune system and helps with baby’s healthy cell division. 11 mg is the recommendation of zinc in a prenatal vitamin, but once again a woman needs to speak to her medical care practitioner to see if she needs more or less than that before she makes her decision about what supplement to take or not take.
7 Try Free Samples First
A lot of women opt for this. Many doctors will give them free samples in the beginning when they are first in the midst of trying to conceive a baby. This is the best time for her to see if the multivitamin her doctor prescribed is working for her and helping her feel energetic. If she notices anything is off, she should not hesitate to ask her doctor to recommend another brand that they feel could best balance out and meet their nutritional needs.
Most doctors would not mind having the woman try what she feels is right for her and her body, so long as she is honest about what she is doing and why she feels one brand may be better than another. The most important thing to her health care provider is that she and her developing baby are doing well, and they will do everything in their power to ensure that this happens.
6 Get A Health Assessment First
Then there are women who go to their medical checkup, get a medical health assessment, and then decide to assemble their own vitamin pack with the specified amount of nutrients they feel will work for them and their bodies. In most cases, this is fine. A woman who is knowledgeable about her body will know that she needs more folic acid for example than zinc or more calcium than something else. However, she should still take caution and let her doctor know what she is doing so that she is being followed in case she gets the balance wrong.
The most important thing is that she is doing something healthy for her body and baby. The doctor will help her figure this out, and will fine tune any issues she may have with side effects with her prenatal vitamin. Sometimes the tweaking may simply be a capsule versus a pill or gummy, or it may be adding or taking something away from her diet, too. Together they will figure it out.
5 If You Have Intense Nausea
Ginger and peppermint are great ingredients to have in a prenatal vitamin as they help curb nausea and a sore stomach. They are gentle, delicate and natural, and a prenatal vitamin that contains these in bigger quantity could help a woman who is suffering from a lot of gas, bloating and discomfort. Another thing is for her to try and not take the supplement on an empty stomach and to eat it with food.
She will undoubtedly find what works for her after some trial and error. Different vitamins have these ingredients in different doses, so she needs to see what works for her and helps alleviate some of the symptoms, and speak to her medical care practitioner to see if they have any recommendations. Again, common sense and listening to her own body are her best guides in helping resolve the problem.
4 Extra Iron Is Good In Some Cases
Sometimes if a woman is experiencing constipation, diarrhea, or gas it could be due to the extra iron in her prenatal pill. The best thing she could do for her body is to drink lots of fluids, eat food rich in fiber and make sure to exercise regularly. If she is still experiencing problems with these symptoms, then she needs to talk to her doctor. They may recommend a supplement without iron or a separate iron preparation which dissolves in the intestine instead of the stomach.
This could cause less aggravation in the stomach. She could also be recommended to take a slow release pill. These are just a few options open to her to try and avoid constipation or not to aggravate it further. This is not an easy problem to have ever, but especially when a woman is eating for two or more! She needs to be proactive and help manage negative symptoms as well as is possible.
3 Vitamin B6 Can Help Curb Nausea
Taking a B6 supplement before pregnancy and one that lists it in the ingredients, has really been shown to help curb nausea in the early months of pregnancy. It has even helped with decreasing or eliminating some vomiting episodes for many women. The other good thing about B6 is that it will help doctors really see what kind of shape she is in, thus what kind of prenatal testing she is best advised to get. Knowing this means that the medical care practitioner will best be able to direct her to the best prenatal vitamin to take for her and her baby’s sake. Knowing this will help her stay in excellent shape throughout her whole pregnancy.
As mentioned earlier, Mom-to-be definitely wants to be taking extra B6 in her daily vitamin supplement if she is on a vegetarian or vegan diet. While there is some B6 in starchy vegetables and in fruits, the quantity will not be what she needs to sustain both herself and baby.
2 If You Need An Extra Boost
Omega 3 Fatty Acids that are found in many fish products, are one of the best things for all of our health, especially for a woman carrying a baby. Omega 3 is crucial in sustaining and promoting baby’s whole development, especially their heart and immune system. The earlier Mom-to-be works on helping support her newborn’s immune system, the healthier her baby will be. This means that Mom and baby will lead a healthier life. If a prenatal vitamin has a lot of Omega-3, or whether she needs to take a separate multivitamin for it, it's good that she is aware of the benefits of this element in a multivitamin.
Again, if a woman is eating a lot of Omega-3s in her natural diet, that is terrific. This means she is giving herself and baby beyond amazing nutrition. But as not all prenatal vitamins are created equal, some may need an additional Omega 3 supplement as they can’t stomach or smell seafood, or others are overwhelmed by the smell and site of it. There is also no danger of ingesting too much mercury by taking a supplement. That is another advantage.
1 Do What’s Right For You
Finally, in the end a woman has to remember that she needs to do what she feels is right for her and her baby. If that means she needs to have more of one element in her vitamin pack, then so be it. She is the one living her life and feeling her body in preconception, during conception and after childbirth. This means she is probably the best person to know what she needs.
With all the information out there too, she can research, compare and shop around to find what the best thing for her and her baby is. But she needs to always check this and any other information she learns with her medical care practitioner so she and they know she is on the best track medically for hers and her baby’s sake. It’s good that she sees there are options for her if she is organic, wants non GMO, is vegetarian, or simply has an allergic or difficult reaction to an ingredient (or ingredients) in the multivitamin itself.