Even if you eat a healthy diet and take a daily multivitamin, your body will need additional nutritional support when you’re pregnant. That is because when you eat, the fetus is also receiving the nutrients.
You don’t need to wait until you’re pregnant to start taking prenatals, though. In fact, taking a prenatal vitamin when you’re trying to conceive can ensure that your baby has all the nutrients it needs during those critical first few weeks after conception.
Prenatals vs. Multivitamins
Prenatals and multivitamins are somewhat similar as to what they offer. They both contain vital nutrients such as calcium, iron, and folate. However, multivitamins provide enough nutrients for an individual woman. As a pregnant woman, you’re not eating for yourself anymore, and your growing baby has very specific nutritional needs.
That’s where prenatal vitamins become helpful. They’re built to provide enough vitamins and minerals – such as calcium, iron, and folate – for both you and the baby.
When to start taking a prenatal vitamin
Timing is also essential when it comes to prenatal vitamins.
When it comes to prenatal vitamins, the earlier, the better. In general, you should start taking them one month before conception as they help with fertility in both men and women. We actually advise our patients to start 3 months before trying.
In addition, a lot happens during the first few weeks of conception, before you even know you’re pregnant. If you’re already taking a prenatal vitamin, your baby will be getting all the nutritional benefits from the very beginning.
When you’re pregnant, continue to take prenatal vitamins once every day to ensure proper baby development.
Side effects of prenatal vitamins
If you follow the directions of prenatal vitamins, you should be able to experience little to no side effects. But many women do report several reactions when taking prenatals, so it’s good to know possible effects.
When you take the vitamins, you may receive minor problems such as:
Most of the side effects are digestive issues because prenatal vitamins contain a high amount of iron. Thankfully, these side effects are temporary and disappear as your body becomes more acclimated to the vitamins.
Men should take prenatals too!
Prenatals aren’t just for women. If you’re trying to get pregnant, then you should definitely consider prenatals for men.
Of course, the purpose for men’s prenatal vitamins differs from the ones for women. They’re used to promote healthy sperm and fertility. This is essential for those trying to conceive because it increases your chances of getting pregnant.
Just like women, men should start taking prenatal vitamins before conception. However, unlike women, men don’t need to continue taking these vitamins once conception has been achieved.
How to choose a prenatal vitamin
Prenatal vitamins are available over the counter as well as through doctor’s prescriptions. No matter how you decide to get them, these are things you should look for when choosing a prenatal vitamin.
One of the most critical nutrients women need is folate, which is a B vitamin (Vitamin B9 to be exact). Folate plays a significant role in forming the baby’s neural tube and is necessary for healthy brain and spinal cord development. In addition, folate is crucial in preventing common congenital disabilities. We are of the opinion that the form of folate matters, too, so choose a prenatal with methylfolate or calcium folinate in them -- not folic acid.
Iron is equally important to you and the baby as it assists in producing red blood cells that carry oxygen throughout your body. It’s also critical in preventing anemia (a condition in which you don’t have enough healthy red blood cells), which can also prevent congenital disabilities.
We all know Calcium has a big hand in building strong bones and teeth, but they also promote healthy regulation of your heart, nervous system, and muscles so that they continue to run smoothly.
All that you hope for is a healthy child – and trust us, you’ll get there.
Just remember to take a Nutritots prenatal vitamin with your food every day when you are trying to conceive and throughout your pregnancy so that your baby grows to become healthy and strong.