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Home Learn Which vitamins to take during pregnancy? 25 Doctors Share their Recommendations for Pregnancy Supplements

Which vitamins to take during pregnancy? 25 Doctors Share their Recommendations for Pregnancy Supplements

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When you are pregnant you want to ensure the best nutrition for you and your baby. Even if you are eating for two, the nutrients that you are taking from regular food may not be enough.

So in that case, it’s best to supplement and take vitamins and minerals specially conceived for pregnant women.

We reached out to 25 doctors and asked them to share their opinions regarding this issue. The exact questions we asked them are the following:

Should women take supplements during pregnancy? If yes, then which vitamins and minerals and what are their benefits?

All doctors agree that pregnant women should take supplements. Keep reading to see what specific vitamins they recommend, why and in what quantity.

Please be advised that before starting any new treatment, it’s best to ask your personal doctor and do a set of tests. This post is meant to inform you and prepare you so you know what to discuss with your physician.

Dr. Kecia Gaither

Kecia Gaither

Women should take supplements during pregnancy. In particular, I always recommend Vitamin D supplementation.

There are a number of beneficial physiological effects on the body from Vitamin D; it is important for cardiovascular health, blood pressure and mentation.

It also acts as an immunity booster which is good for the mom and baby during pregnancy and particularly beneficial during COVID. Vitamin D also decreases the incidence of preterm labor.

And lastly, it is beneficial to bone development. Vitamin D is made in the skin in conjunction with sunlight. Melanin inhibits production so in particular, individuals of color are at increased risk of Vitamin D deficiency.

As a result, it’s even more important for women of color to supplement with Vitamin D. The goal is to have a level of at least 40-60 ng/ml.

Your physician can check your levels or you can get your own kit to test yourself. Vitamin D is inexpensive and can be gotten at the pharmacy. It is generally recommended to take between 1000- 2000 IU daily.

Mark Trolice - My Fertility Care

Mark Trolice

Prenatal Vitamins/folic acid

A birth defect is dreaded by all expectant mothers. Major defects of the fetal brain and spine, called Neural Tube Defect, can be significantly reduced by folic acid.

When a woman is pregnant, her intake of folic acid should be 600 micrograms (mcg) daily.

It may be difficult to obtain that much folic acid in a diet so the American College of Ob/Gyn (http://acog.org) recommends folic acid 400 mcg daily (found in prenatal vitamins) to begin one month before pregnancy attempts and continue throughout the pregnancy. Folic acid may also improve a woman’s fertility rate!

Iron

Pregnancy needs are not limited to vitamins. Iron is vital to carry oxygen to the growing fetus and a woman needs more iron than when she is not pregnant - about double the amount!

Fortunately, most prenatal vitamins carry the daily amount of iron needed (27 mg or milligrams). Here’s a tip for some iron-rich foods: lean red meat, fish, poultry, dried bean and peas, prune juice, and iron-fortified cereals.

Calcium

The growing fetus needs to build its bones and teeth. So, pregnant women (and all women above age 18) should take 1,000 mg of calcium every day. Great sources of calcium in food include milk and other dairy products, such as cheese and yogurt.

If a woman has trouble tolerating milk, other sources of calcium are sardines, broccoli, dark, leafy greens, or calcium supplements.

Vitamin D

We are learning more about the benefits of Vitamin D before and during pregnancy. Like calcium, vitamin D helps the fetus develop its bone and teeth, but it also is vital for healthy skin and vision.

All women, including those pregnant, need 600 international units or IU of vitamin D every day either in vitamins or diet such as milk fortified with vitamin D and fatty fish like salmon. The sun is also a great resource because it converts a chemical in the skin to vitamin D.

DHA

DHA stands for docosahexaenoic acid and helps with growth and development. During pregnancy, you need 200 milligrams of DHA day for your baby’s brain and eyes development. Not all prenatal vitamins contain DHA so good sources include:

Fish that are low in mercury, like herring, salmon, trout, anchovies and halibut; Orange juice, milk and eggs (but check the package label)

Iodine

Iodine helps your body make thyroid hormone. It helps your baby’s brain and nervous system develop. Good sources of iodine include:

  • Fish
  • Milk, cheese and yogurt
  • Enriched or fortified cereal and bread (check the package label)
  • Iodized salt (salt with iodine added to it; check the package label)

Brittany Robles - Postpartum Trainer

Brittany Robles

I definitely recommend that women take supplements while pregnant because it is difficult to ensure that you are getting adequate amounts of each nutrient on a daily basis.

They key nutrients to look out for are:

Folate

Folate is one of the most important nutrients you need in pregnancy. It helps in the formation of the neural tube and prevents birth defects associated with the spinal cord such as spina bifida.

The recommended intake for women who are not yet pregnant is 400mcg per day, starting 3 months before attempting pregnancy.

Vitamin D and Calcium

Another common nutrient needed by pregnant women is Vitamin D and Calcium. These nutrients are important for fetal skeletal development.

It is recommended that pregnant women get 200-600 IU of Vit D per day, along with at least 250 mg of Calcium.

Iron

Iron is important in pregnancy as it helps in the production of red blood cells in mom and also for placental health in baby, but not as much is needed during pregnancy when compared to non-pregnancy.

It is recommended that pregnant women should take 27 mg per day for their best health.

Iodine

Iodine is another nutrient that is essential for thyroid hormone development. It is recommended that pregnant women should take 150 mcg per day. Iodine can be obtained through dietary sources that include iodized salt.

Vitamin B12

This vitamin is essential for the production of red blood cells in mom and also for placental health in the baby. It is recommended that pregnant women should take at least 400 mcg per day, especially if they are vegetarian/vegan

DHA

DHA is another overlooked supplement that is needed in pregnancy. The development of the baby's brain and eyes in utero is supported by this supplement. It is recommended that pregnant women should take at least 200 mg per day.

Dr. Ashley Margeson - Superwoman Code

Dr. Ashley Margeson

There are two to three key supplements that are indicated in pregnancy. The first is folate, a B Vitamin that has been shown to drastically reduce the risk of neural tube defects during development.

Folate is such a key part of development that we recommend being on at least a folate if there is even the chance you could be pregnant.

Two other supplements that are indicated based on bloodwork and symptoms are iron and omega-3 fatty acids. Bloodwork for both hemoglobin and ferritin indicates whether or not an iron supplement is indicated. If so, an easily absorbable iron such as a heme-iron reduces the risk of concentration

Omega-3 Fatty Acids are indicated based on the symptom of "baby brain." If that starts to appear in the second or third trimester, then an omega-3 fatty acid is generally necessary.

Dr. Alan Lindemann

Dr. Alan Lindemann

During pregnancy, women should take prenatal vitamins, the ones their physicians suggest. You should know what supplements you are taking and why. Talk with your physician about why supplements are important in pregnancy.

My first practice was in a rural Minnesota community surrounded by farms. During the first six months, I had two patients deliver babies with what are called neural tube defects (problems with spinal cord nerves).

To me, this seemed like a high incidence of this birth defect. At the time I thought it might be something in the environment. Later, the connection between too little folic acid and neural tube defects in pregnant women was made.

Prenatal vitamins should contain 400 micrograms of folic acid.

In fact, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that if you have a history of neural tube defect in pregnancy, that you take 4000 micrograms a day when trying to get pregnant, and continue that level of folic acid through the third month of pregnancy.*

Iron is also an important supplement to consider when you are pregnant. Your body will make several units of blood during your pregnancy. Because of this increase in the volume of blood, a pregnant woman can appear to be anemic in her pregnancy.

Iron is needed to form hemoglobin. It takes about three months for your body to produce red blood cells and for your hemoglobin levels to start going back up from your body’s increase in blood volume.

However, iron supplements can make you nauseated and constipated, something you don’t need in pregnancy. It helps to eat before taking prenatal vitamins.

If you still have trouble with nausea from taking supplements with iron, talk with your physician. There are other ways to increase your iron intake without taking supplements.

You should take the vitamins your physician suggests when you are pregnant. If you have any problems with taking the supplements your physician suggests, talk about them with your doctor.

Dr. Tamika Cross

Dr. Tamika Cross

I don’t really recommend anything outside of prenatal supplements, so I would say no.  

It’s better to have a well-balanced diet, and a lot of things you can get from a well-balanced diet, I mean that’s the point of supplements, to supplement things that were not taking in, in our diet.

So usually in pregnancy, I recommend taking the prenatal vitamins because it does give you a little more of a boost than the average western diet.

I definitely don’t recommend anything else necessarily because you really should be trying to focus on a well-balanced diet and making sure you take in proteins, carbs, fat, food that are rich, iron, folic acid, and things like that.

I recommend just taking the prenatal vitamins and having a healthy well-balanced diet.

Prenatal vitamins/supplements:

There are so many different brands, grab whichever one you feel comfortable with, whether it’s gummies, pills, whatever. As long as they have DHA in them, which pretty much nowadays most of them do, it’s fine.

I just wouldn’t do the other supplements because people take these that people are putting on the market, then they end up taking an excessive amount of vitamins that can actually be toxic.

Like if you have to take a lot of vitamin A that can be really really bad for the baby, or if you have too much vitamin C that can be bad for the baby. So I definitely don’t recommend taking additional supplements.

Alaina Brinley Rajagopal - The Emergency Docs

The Emergency Docs

Every woman should be taking a prenatal vitamin during pregnancy along with following a healthy diet.

The recommended supplement is a prenatal vitamin with folic acid, iron, calcium, vitamin D, choline, omega-3 fatty acids, B vitamins, and vitamin C.

The prenatal vitamin is the only required supplement but your obstetrician can recommend a specific vitamin or suggest additional supplements as needed.

The supplement should contain at least 400 micrograms of folic acid to help meet the 600 micrograms of folic acid needed per day for pregnant women.

Your food supplies some folic acid and can be found in foods such as leafy green vegetables, fortified cereal, enriched bread and pasta, peanuts, orange juice, beans.

Folic acid is important to prevent certain brain and spine defects in the fetus. You should begin taking the prenatal vitamin at least one month before you start trying to get pregnant and continue taking it for the entire pregnancy.

Carrie Lam - Dr. Lam Coaching

Dr. Lam Coaching

Women should take prenatal vitamin supplements before and during pregnancy as nutrient intake needs increase when pregnant.

Certain supplements are safe during pregnancy, for example Vitamin B6 can be safely taken when feeling nauseated especially during the first trimester.

Folic acid is especially important during pregnancy to help prevent neural tube defects.

Vitamin D can also be supplemented safely if one stays mostly indoors and doesn't get enough sunlight.

If one is suffering from anemia, then iron can be taken safey to help boost blood levels.

Dr. Danielle Plummer - HGPharmacist

HGPharmacist

Pregnant women should take supplements if their body is deficient in nutrients or if higher doses are needed during pregnancy.

All women should take 0.4 - 0..8mg of folic acid daily starting at least one month prior to pregnancy through 12 weeks to lower the risk of developing neural tube defects.

If they have had a baby with a neural tube defect or a family history of it then supplement with 4mg/day. If they have certain variations of the MTHFR gene mutations, then take the methylated form known as methyl folate.

Vitamin B12, cyanocobalamin, is also important in working with folic acid to develop a healthy nervous system.

Women with mild nausea may benefit from ginger. Women with severe nausea and vomiting quickly become depleted in vital nutrition and need supplementation through alternative routes including IV, topical and rectal.

Important supplements include vitamin B1 (thiamin), at least 100mg, to prevent complications including Wernicke’s Encephalopathy and vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) to decrease nausea.

Magnesium and potassium may help women who are experiencing muscle cramps or restless legs and vitamin K may help women with clotting disorders. As most of us are deficient in vitamin D, supplementing may be necessary to increase immunity and bone strength.

Dr. William Haas - OvulifeMD

OvulifeMD

Despite our best efforts to eat clean and stick to a balanced diet, many women in the United States have deficiencies in some of the key vitamins and minerals required for pregnancy.

And because a growing baby gets all the necessary nutrients it needs from its mother, more of these essential vitamins and minerals are required during pregnancy.

The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecologists specifically recommends getting adequate amounts of 10 different vitamins and minerals: calcium, iron, choline, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, and folic acid.

These nutrients help with everything from brain development to bone growth. Folic acid is especially important for preventing birth defects of the brain and spinal cord - that’s why it’s found in nearly every prenatal vitamin.

Some of the recommended vitamins, such as choline, are not as commonly found in prenatals, so it’s important to take a close look at the label and review the specific one you're taking with your OB/GYN.

Dr Lawrence Gerlis - Same Day Doctor

Same Day Doctor

Pregnancy puts a huge additional nutritional strain on the body.

When one considers that a full new human life has to develop within the space of nine months it is easy to recognise that the nutritional requirements for pregnant women are substantial in order to sustain this development.

Not only is there a requirement for extra calories, but in addition certain vitamins and minerals are very important.

The entire range of vitamins therefore should be supplemented in pregnancy, in particular vitamin B6 B12 as well as the usual ACD and K vitamins.

Furthermore minerals are important in the situation and magnesium calcium zinc should all be supplemented.

Most important of all is iron supplementation as the new fetus demands a lot of iron requirements and iron deficiency anaemia is very common in pregnancy particularly in those on a vegan or vegetarian diet.

Regular blood tests are important to assess the iron status as well as detect vitamin deficiencies in advance. Folic acid deficiency in particular may be associated with fetal abnormalities.

Dr. Taylor Graber - ASAP IVs

ASAP IVs

Pyridoxine (Vitamin B6):

Nausea and vomiting is incredibly common, also called morning sickness, pregnancy induced nausea and vomiting, or in more extreme situations, hyperemesis gravidarum.

Taken as a supplement, Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) has an excellent safety profile, minimal side effects, is easily available as an over-the-counter supplement, and helps with nausea.

A direct mechanism is not currently known, but maternal levels of vitamin B6 naturally decrease as the gestational period increases.

The dosage of this as a supplement is 10-25 milligrams every 6-8 hours as tolerated, up to a maximum of 200 milligrams per day (B6 is tolerated up to 500 mg per day safely, but the recommended range is up to 200 mg per day).

B6 has been shown to be helpful with mild to moderate nausea in several randomized controlled trials.

Dr. Ng Kai Lyn - Gynae Patient Info

Gynae Patient Info

Although it is a myth that pregnant women need to “eat for two”, requirements for certain nutrients are significantly higher during pregnancy compared to the non-pregnant state.

As such, most women are advised to take supplements during their pregnancy. If you are pregnant, here is a useful list of essential vitamins and minerals to include in your diet:

1. Folic acid.

A dose of at least 400 micrograms daily should be started 3 months before you get pregnant and throughout your first three months of pregnancy.

This helps prevent neural tube defects in your baby, which are malformations of the brain and spinal cord and easily preventable with adequate intake of folic acid.

2. Calcium.

Increase your calcium intake to boost the formation of strong bones and teeth for your baby.

Good calcium sources of calcium include milk, cheese, yogurt, and green leafy vegetables. You may take oral supplements available over the counter.

3. Vitamin D.

Goes hand-in-hand with calcium as it is required for absorption of the latter. Food sources include fortified milk, cold water deep-sea fishes, and butter.

Do get out more into the sun as that helps you make vitamin D too! Vitamin D is commonly added in your calcium and prenatal supplements so keep a lookout for it.

4. Iron.

This is essential in the formation of red blood cells for both you and your baby. Insufficient iron in the body causes anaemia – this can result in giddiness, fainting, tiredness, or even shortness of breath and chest pain in severe cases.

Aim to take vitamin C with iron rich foods to enhance absorption. Do remember not to take your iron supplements within 2 hours of calcium supplements due to absorption interference.

5. Omega-3 Fatty Acid (DHA).

This is vital for your baby’s brain and eye development. Although DHA is found in deep sea fishes, do exercise caution as some fishes may contain high mercury levels.

DHA-rich sources that are safe include salmon, sardines, herring, halibut and omega-3 fortified eggs. You may also obtain your source of DHA from oral supplements – including vegetarian options – which are easily available.

Every woman (and her pregnancy) can be different in their unique ways so do remember to check with your obgyn to make sure that you are taking the right supplements :)

Tracy Lyon - Children’s Hospital of San Antonio

Children’s Hospital of San Antonio

It is recommended that women take a prenatal vitamin starting at least 3 months prior to attempting to conceive, or if they are sexually active and not using any contraception.

A prenatal vitamin, and not a multivitamin, is preferred as prenatal vitamins have the correct dosages of vitamins and minerals recommended for the average pregnant patient.

It is recommended that women take 400 mcg (micrograms) of folic acid per day. Folic acid helps to prevent Spina Bifida, which can affect your baby for the rest of their life.  

Spina bifida can result in a baby never being able to walk, and has been determined at about the time you have a positive pregnancy test.

Starting a prenatal vitamin after you become pregnant is too late to prevent this condition.

Women should NOT take over 10,000 I.U. of Vitamin A per day. Some multivitamins exceed this amount, and can result in birth defects.

Vitamin D is not routinely supplemented, but if a woman knows she has low Vitamin D levels, she should take 600 – 2,000 I.U. per day. Low levels of Vitamin D during pregnancy have been associated with skeletal issues in the baby.

There are no other vitamins routinely recommended during pregnancy, but fish oil or Omega-3 fatty acids may help to prevent premature labor, preeclampsia and postpartum depression.

Having a healthy diet including the intake of fruits, vegetables and other foods that provide B vitamins, calcium and iron can also have a positive impact on a pregnancy.  

Dr. Kate Killoran - Your Doctors Online

Your Doctors Online

Adequate nutrition is vital to a healthy pregnancy. Obtaining most of your nutrients from your diet is the best way to absorb necessary vitamins and minerals.

But often in pregnancy the need for nutrients increases beyond what we can deliver through food. And thus a prenatal vitamin is recommended for all pregnant women.

In fact, to ensure adequate levels of the important nutrients it is best to start a prenatal vitamin 3 months prior to conception.

Some of these important vitamins and minerals include folic acid, iron, calcium, vitamin D, choline, omega-3 fatty acids, B vitamins, and vitamin C.

For many women, eating a nutritious diet and a prenatal vitamin is sufficient. There are several circumstances where additional folate is recommended including, diabetes, smokers, certain medications, or history of a neural tube defect.

Other supplements that are safe and may have benefits include ginger for nausea, fish oil for brain development and depression, as well as choline.

Choline has recently been recognized as an important nutrient with numerous potential benefits including brain development, fetal and placental growth and even reduction in chronic disease risk.

Many prenatal vitamins may not contain choline and thus an additional supplement may be necessary.

Dr. Kristin Saxena - Saxena Family Foundation

Saxena Family Foundation

It is recommended that pregnant women take a daily prenatal vitamin. Pregnancy increases the need for nutrients and, while these are best derived from the diet, a good prenatal vitamin helps ensure these needs are being met.

One of the most important nutrients to look for in a prenatal vitamin is folic acid. It is recommended that pregnant women take at least 600 mcg of folic acid per day to reduce the risk of neural tube defects and congenital abnormalities like cleft palate or heart defects.

It is also good to look for a prenatal vitamin that contains the essential fatty acids DHA and EPA which appear to be correlated with improving a baby’s brain development and possibly reducing maternal depression.

Additional supplements may be suggested by your doctor such as iron if you are experiencing pregnancy-induced anemia.

Other supplements such as additional vitamin D, magnesium, and probiotics are likely to be safe and may be beneficial, however, it is imperative that women always check with their health care professional before starting any new supplement because supplements are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration and most have not been studied well in pregnant women.

Dr. Mubashar Rehman - HealthCreeds

HealthCreeds

Although, in theory, with proper nutrition, vitamin and mineral tablets are not necessary, in practice, many doctors recommend them. That is because, during pregnancy, some of these values tend to be below the normal standards.

The mother's body needs to compensate for the vitamins and minerals consumed by the new life that is forming. For this reason, doctors recommend that pregnant women take the following vitamin supplements:

  • Folic acid: several studies have shown that additional folic acid intake helps reduce the risk of congenital malformations of the neural tube, an embryonic structure that forms the brain and spinal cord.
  • Omega 3: although not considered essential for adults, some studies suggest that the development of a baby's eyesight and nervous system may be helped by the consumption of omega 3 fatty acids.
  • Iron: Iron is necessary for the regeneration of hemoglobin, the oxygen-carrying component of the blood. Some women may have low iron levels in laboratory tests and suffer from anemia. That is quite common in pregnancy because the extra fluid content in the blood dilutes the amount of circulating iron, and the baby also uses some of the mother's reserves.
  • Calcium: since the calcium requirements of a developing baby are high, the idea is to increase the calcium intake to prevent decalcification of bones and teeth in the mother.
  • Vitamin D: Many calcium supplements nowadays include vitamin D, since it helps the proper absorption of this mineral and, therefore, it is important for the correct formation of bones.

Dr. Mona Fahoum - Meridian Medicine

Meridian Medicine

We see a number of women who have histories of chronic vaginitis, sexual dysfunction and there are ways to restore vaginal health with herbal medication and pharmaceuticals when appropriate.

Adaptogenic supplements that balance hormone levels naturall will support fertility health. When the body is not happy there can be a substance or chronic inflammation environment for the fertility of ovulation.

Alongside a strong multivitamin to keep overall nutrient levels balanced.

Other nutrients to keep a check on Vitamin D, Zinc that has Copper in it (long-term zinc can deplete copper), Vitamin C, and get natural antioxidants in by eating berries!

Sometimes there are very simple interventions that shift everything for both men and women – and sometimes we have to go back to the drawing board and find a ‘reset’ button.

Don’t go it alone, let an expert help you working with alternative, functional and integrative doctors can be helpful long-term for pre and post-fertility.

Fadwah Halaby - Midwife360

Midwife360

We do recommend supplements. But only if the client believes they are unable to get all of the nutrients that their body needs from their food. This should be the #1 source of nutrients whether pregnant or not.

There are also herbal mixtures that can be used as teas or infusions to get more nutrients as needed.

If a person wants to take a prenatal vitamin, or any prenatal supplements, we always recommend a food based option for better absorption by the body.

Many synthesized vitamins and minerals will pass through the system unabsorbed and wasted.

Many folks are deficient in Vitamin D, and even if they are in the normal range are not likely high enough in the range (normal is 32-100 - recommend being 50-80).

Magnesium is another great supplement for a pregnant person. It helps with sleep, constipation, muscle soreness, high blood pressure, and preterm contractions.

Also, probiotics are an essential part of a healthy lifestyle. Having a robust digestive system that has the ability to break down the food and assist the body with absorbing the essential nutrients is the foundation of healthy living.

Dr. Jacky Montoya - Vitaya MD

Vitaya MD

Women and especially women during pregnancy should begin supplementing prior to becoming pregnant and continue during pregnancy as well as post partum. The most important vitamins include folic acid, Calcium, Iron, Iodine, vitamin D, Iron and a combination of the B vitamins.

During pregnancy a woman’s body undergoes so many physiological changes and the body is quickly and readily adapting. IT is important that women have a well rounded and nutritious diet during pregnancy to ensure the body has everything it needs to grow a beautiful baby or babies.

Prenatal vitamins include folic acid as it is necessary to avoid neural tube defects in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy.

Foods that include folic acid are leafy vegetables, beans and nuts. Calcium is another important mineral that the baby needs to grow, as the mothers calcium becomes depleted she risks losing bone density during pregnancy.

Iodine is very important to maintain thyroid function and is normally included in a prenatal.

Lastly, Iron is important in producing and replenishing blood cells needed to carry oxygen and nutrients to the baby.

The easiest way to approach nutrition during pregnancy is to have the thought “ everything I put in my mouth should provide some nutritional value to the baby” and every now and then a craving can be satisfied knowing most of your intake is nutritious and provides valuable vitamins and minerals.

Supplementation is essential as it does ensure that all of those necessary vitamins are available in abundance and that the woman or baby's health is not being compromised.

Dr. Jessica Nouhavandi - Honeybee Health

Honeybee Health

Prenatal vitamins are recommended for women during pregnancy to help ensure the fetus gets what they need. The following can be found within prenatal vitamins:

  • Folic acid is a B vitamin necessary for all cellular growth and development. During pregnancy, women need more folic acid than normal for the development and growth of fetal cells.
  • Before pregnancy, women should take 400 mcg of folic acid daily; during pregnancy, they should be taking 600 mcg of folic acid daily.
  • Calcium is a mineral that helps the fetus’ bones, teeth, muscles, and nerves develop. During pregnancy, 1,000 milligrams of calcium are needed each day.
  • Vitamin D is required to help the body’s nerves, muscles, and immune system work properly.. Vitamin D also helps the fetus’s bone and teeth growth. During pregnancy, 600 IU of vitamins is needed each day.
  • It is also recommended for women to take in 27g of iron daily. Iron is used to make hemoglobin, a protein that helps carry oxygen from your lung to the rest of the body.
  • Twice as much iron is needed when pregnant to make more blood so it can carry oxygen to both the mother and the fetus. The fetus needs iron in order to make his/her own blood.
  • Iodine is needed during pregnancy to help develop the fetus’ nervous system (brain, spinal cord, and nerves) in order to help him/her move, think, and feel. 220 micrograms of iodine are needed per day.

Allie Edwards - The Perfect Pregnancy Plan

The Perfect Pregnancy Plan

Women should absolutely take supplements during pregnancy. However they need to be very careful that they know what to take, how much to take, and that they are sure they are getting the highest quality supplements possible.

In recent years through the studies of epigenetic during pregnancy we have learned that prenatal nutrition is obscenely more important than we previously realized.

It is now known that what you eat while pregnant actually changes how your baby's genes are expressed. Essentially meaning you have the power to "turn on '' good genes and "turn off" bad genes based upon your diet and activity during pregnancy.

The only prenatal nutrition and fitness program that explains this in detail and how to apply it is called The Perfect Pregnancy Plan and is based on the most up to date scientific research.

While it is ideal to get the bulk of your nutrients during pregnancy from your diet, some of the nutritional requirements for optimal fetal growth and development are so high that supplementation is required.

But always know where your supplements are source, do your research, and aim for "as close to nature" as possible.

Dr. Shaista Waheed - Healthwire

Healthwire

During pregnancy, fetal growth completely depends upon the nutrients coming from mother. Many important multivitamins and other nutrients are known to support PLACENTAL DEVELOPMENT.

Talking about DHA, here is why pregnant women need to consume DHA supplements.

DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) is an essentially important structural fatty acid that is required for retinal and central nervous system development in children. Most of the children brain development is completed during pregnancy that requires nutritional support from maternal body.

Under normal circumstances, omega-3 fatty acid is metabolically converted to DHA. However, there is a reduction in metabolic processing of these fatty acid.

Consequently, in order to support children brain and retinal development women need to take DHA supplements during pregnancy alongside eating DHA rich diet.

Dr. Madathupalayam Madhankumar - iCliniq

iCliniq

Taking the right nutrients is vital at every stage of life, especially during pregnancy, as you need to nourish both yourself and the growing fetus.

Experts from the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology recommend that all pregnant women take a prenatal vitamin and folic acid supplement to fill the nutritional gaps and prevent developmental abnormalities at birth.

Prenatal vitamins

These are multivitamins to meet the increased demand for micronutrients during pregnancy.

Folate

Folate is a vitamin that plays a major role in DNA synthesis, red blood cell production, and the development of the fetus.

Iron

Iron is vital for oxygen transport and the healthy growth and development of your baby and the placenta.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin for better immune function, bone health, and cell division.

Dr. Burt Webb - Vitalitymds

Vitalitymds

Women should take supplements during their pregnancy, but more importantly, they should be taking supplements before they become pregnant.

Many women don’t feel well during the pregnancy so do not take supplements on a regular basis.

The other aspect is that most prenatal vitamins are of poor quality. Yes, they have lots of numbers on the back panel but there are questions about how and if the nutrients are absorbed.

Pharmaceutical grade supplements need to have much higher standards regarding their purity of product and better absorption than most prenatal vitamins.

Prenatal vitamins should have iron and folate with levels determined for all nutrients by American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

Thank you so much to all the medical experts that have contributed to this expert roundup! If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it on social media with your friends and family.

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