Vitamin Supplements

Dec 25, 2010 No Comments by

Virtually no one gets a nutritionally perfect diet everyday, especially early in pregnancy, when round-the-clock morning sickness is a common appetite suppressant, or when the little nutrition some women manage to get down often doesn’t stay down (sound familiar?).Though a daily vitamin supplement can’t take the place of a good prenatal diet, it can serve as some dietary insurance, guaranteeing that your baby won’t be cheated if you don’t always hit the nutritional mark you’re aiming for, especially during the early months when so much of your’s baby’s most crucial construction occurs.

And there are others good reason to take your vitamins. For one thing, studies show that women who take a vitamin supplement containing folic acid during the first months of pregnancy (and even prior to pregnancy) significantly reduce the risk of neural tube defects (such as spina bifida) in their babies, as well as help prevent preterm birth.For another, research has shown that taking a supplement containing at least 10 mg of vitamin B6 before and during early pregnancy can minimize morning sickness (and who needs a better reason than that?).
Good formulation designed especially for expectant mothers are available by prescription or over-the-counter. Don’t take any kind of dietary supplements other than such a prenatal formula without your practitioner’s approval.
Some women find that taking the typical horse-size prenatal supplement increase nausea, especially early in pregnancy. Switching vitamin formulas or pill types may help, as may taking your pill with food (unless you usually throw up after eating) or taking it during the time of day when you’re least likely to be nauseous. A coated pill is often easier to tolerate, as well as easier to swallow. If even that bothers you, you might consider a chewable supplement or a slow release one. If your nausea is particularly bad, look for a formulation that’s higher in vitamin B6 (ginger is another good addition for the queasy set). But be sure any formula you select approximates the requirement for supplement designed for pregnancy and doesn’t contain any extras that might not be safe (such as herbs). If your practioner precribed your supplement, check with him or her before switiching.
In some women, the iron in a prenatal vitamin causes constipation or diarrhea. Again, switiching formulas may bring relief. Taking a pregnancy supplement without iron and a separate iron  preparation (your doctor can recommend one that dissloves in the intestines rather than in the more sensitive stomach-or one that is a slow release) may also relieve symptoms.

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