When did you start taking your prenatal? If you are like the majority of woman, you probably went to the store to pick one up after you saw your positive test results. Typically it looks a little like this:
For those of you who are not pregnant but are thinking about trying soon or in the stages of trying right now, GO GET YOUR PRENATAL. Prenatal vitamins are beneficial for not only your baby’s development but also to support your own nutrient stores, which effects every aspect of your baby’s development in the long run.
Now, not to add any additional stress but the importance of taking a prenatal vitamin prior to that positive test result can be critical. Within the first four weeks of your pregnancy neural tube defects can develop and form, the FIRST FOUR WEEKS. That means, in most cases, you are already past that point when you see that positive test result. Finding a prenatal that has folate (not folic acid) helps prevent neural tube defects during this time period. Another post to come about folate vs folic acid but you can learn a brief overview here.
So now we know, if possible, take your prenatal vitamin before conceiving to set an optimal foundation for you and baby. It doesn’t stop there though. It is recommended to keep taking your prenatal vitamin through pregnancy, through breastfeeding, and then a few weeks after. This is, again, a way to not only support the needs of your baby but also to help replenish any nutrient stores that may have become depleted throughout these motherhood transitions.
When choosing a prenatal, keep in mind that you don’t have to stick with the same one all of pregnancy. You may need to change your prenatal based on:
- Symptoms (nausea, preeclampsia, constipation, postpartum recovery, etc)
- Aversions and cravings
- Nutrient deficiencies
- Changes in Diet/ specialty diets
- Labor and Delivery
When choosing a prenatal vitamin it is important to keep in mind that it is a SUPPLEMENT, NOT A SUBSITUTE to a healthy diet. Look to get your nutrients in through your diet, but know that a meal, a day, a stretch of morning sickness is not going to ruin you or your baby. Continue to make the best choices you can, while including a prenatal vitamin for support. Here are three pinpoints per type of prenatal. To find one that fits your specific needs book a consult here.
- The most common prenatal type taken.
- High quality ones often have you needing to take multiple throughout the day.
- Better source for fat soluble vitamins if in a liquid or gel capsule.
- Easy to consume and beneficial for those having difficulty swallowing pills or consuming gummies.
- Beneficial for Vitamin D absorption rates.
- Flavor can be intense.
- Can be useful for those who have a hard time swallowing pills or those experiencing nausea. (Easy to add to smoothies, food, beverages, etc.)
- Can be difficult for those on the go to consume on a regular basis.
- Fat soluble vitamins can have a difficult time being absorbed and may need separate supplementation.
- Can be useful for those who need support in taking a prenatal regularly.
- Can be used for those who have difficulty swallowing pills or are having intense aversions to foods, smells, and textures.
- Often high in sugars unnecessary fillers.
- Take a prenatal before conceiving.
- Continue throughout your breastfeeding journey.
- There are different types of prenatal vitamins and you can change the prenatal you are taking AT ANYTIME.
- We all have different nutritional needs based on our health history, food intake, and symptoms. Book a consult to get your individual needs identified.