One of the biggest challenges during pregnancy is trying to do everything right for the baby. Many parents worry about their child’s development and what steps should be taken to support it. Fortunately, there is a source for some peace of mind! One of the most important steps you can take during pregnancy is to provide your baby with the nutrients they need to grow strong and healthy. A prenatal vitamin may be the best way to do that.
Supporting your health and the growing baby is no light task. We here at iwi life understand that and want to make sure you know everything you should look out for as you consider taking a prenatal vitamin.
What Are the Benefits of Prenatal Vitamins?
Prenatal vitamins provide several benefits during pregnancy. Pregnant women should obtain even higher amounts of regular daily nutrients when supporting a growing baby. However, this can be hard to do on your regular diet alone. Prenatal vitamins provide the support you need to reach your recommended daily amounts. Consider taking a prenatal multivitamin during pregnancy as they allow you to do the following:
- Obtain your daily requirements of vital nutrients
- Support the healthy development of your baby.
- Provide extra support to your body while you work to support your new little one
- Allow you to provide nutrients to the baby even during breastfeeding
What Nutrients Should You Take During Pregnancy?
A wide range of nutrients support fetal development, each offering its own benefits and influencing the growth and development of different systems in the body. The following are some of the most important nutrients you should receive during pregnancy.
Vitamins A Through D
There is a long list of vitamins that prove to be beneficial for your baby’s development during pregnancy. Vitamin A is important for aiding the formation of healthy skin and eyes, as well as aiding in bone growth. Vitamins B6 and B12 help form red blood cells and support the nervous system. Folate, another B vitamin, is also crucial for proper cell growth and function. Vitamin C supports healthy teeth and gum development as well as immune function, and vitamin D supports healthy bones, teeth, eyesight, and skin.
This essential nutrient is crucial for developing a baby’s bones and teeth while in the womb. It also has a role in supporting muscle, heart, and nerve development. If you do not take in enough calcium, your body will start to take what you have and give it to the baby, which can negatively impact your bone mass. During pregnancy, you should receive at least 1,000 mg of calcium daily.
Iron is one of the most important nutrients during pregnancy. A developing baby will receive all their nutrients through the blood. Iron supports the development of both the placenta and the fetus by contributing largely to the body’s blood production. The vital mineral helps produce myoglobin and hemoglobin, which are two proteins that allow red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout the body and to the baby.
Since blood volume doubles during pregnancy, women should receive at least 27mg of iron a day while pregnant. It helps to note that this number is 33% higher than necessary when not pregnant, a significantly higher amount that requires a large uptick in iron intake. A prenatal vitamin helps support this steep increase in daily need.
Folic acid is critical to developing the most important system in a baby, and you should start taking it as soon as possible. It is so important that some experts recommend taking folic acid up to three months before becoming pregnant in an ideal situation.
Folic acid is a critical component of the development of the neural tube, which eventually becomes the baby’s brain and spinal cord. It is generally recommended that you take at least 400 micrograms of a folic acid supplement daily with the approval of your OB/GYN or healthcare provider.
Omega-3s are polyunsaturated fatty acids that make up the building blocks of many cells in the body. Two of the most important forms of omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), are extremely important factors in the growth and development of your baby. It is recommended that pregnant women receive at least 200 milligrams of DHA per day for a healthy pregnancy.
DHA fatty acids are a critical component of the eyes and brain and are necessary to support the development of these two important systems. Meanwhile, EPA helps to support cognitive development in the baby. EPA is also a great addition to your nutrient intake during pregnancy because it can help to support positive emotional support for the mother, even after pregnancy.
Not all prenatal vitamins consider the importance of omega-3s in their formula. Fortunately, iwi life’s prenatal vitamins are made with 25mg of EPA and 200mg of DHA fatty acids, making it much easier to get your recommended daily intake.
When Should You Take Prenatal Vitamins?
Prenatal vitamin supplements help support your baby’s development and are important to take throughout pregnancy. However, it is best to start taking prenatal vitamins before conception since nutrient levels often take time to rise, especially if you currently have any nutrient deficiencies.
Not everyone anticipates pregnancy, so if this is not possible, you should start taking the vitamins as soon as you find out you are pregnant to give your baby that extra support of key nutrients. A fetus undergoes significant development in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. During the first part of pregnancy, the baby’s spinal cord and brain are already developing, so taking these vitamins as soon as possible to provide extra support is very helpful.
It is even a good idea to take prenatal vitamins after the baby is born and throughout the breastfeeding process while maintaining a healthy diet. This way, you can continue providing your baby with essential nutrients to promote their healthy development.
While breastfeeding, women continue to benefit from a surplus of essential vitamins and nutrients. Prenatal vitamins are a great way to keep those nutrient levels high as you support your baby during their first part of life.
See the Powers of Prenatal Vitamins for Yourself
To support healthy fetal and early childhood development, you should be sure to get several important vitamins and nutrients from both a balanced diet and supplementation. Finding a vitamin that meets all your needs during pregnancy can be challenging. Fortunately, iwi life’s prenatal supplement combines many of the nutrients that support the health and wellness of you and your baby during pregnancy.
With just two softgels a day, iwi’s prenatal supplements provide you with all the above nutrients and more. At iwi life, we believe it should be easy for you to get the nutrients you need, especially when you need to support yourself and your developing baby. Try our supplements for yourself and experience the benefits of getting your necessary nutrients all from one place.
When Should You Start Taking Prenatal Vitamins? | Cleveland Clinic
Calcium - Consumer | National Institute for Health