What are prenatal vitamins anyway? They are supplements that are taken before and during a pregnancy. These include Omega 3 fatty acids, vitamin D supplements, folate, iron and calcium.
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According to doctors, the best time to start taking them is months or weeks before you plan on getting pregnant. There are many reasons why they should be part of your diet plan.
Here are some.
i.They prep your body for what’s to come
There’s no problem taking supplements even before you’re pregnant. You should do all you can to prepare your body for the rapid changes that are about to take place.
We know that a pregnancy is no joke and if you plan one and create the best environment before the time comes, you increase your chances of having a healthy pregnancy and delivery.
That extra supply of nutrients could regulate your hormones and prepare your cervix as well.
ii.They prevent birth defects
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The most crucial developmental milestone is the first trimester. They’re all important but during the first weeks, you need to be in top shape so that the baby can develop properly.
This is the stage where neural tube defects can occur which lead to serious nerve and spine malformations. Such problems happen quickly even before you realize you’re pregnant.
All that can be avoided when you have enough supply of nutrients like folic acid.
iii.Maintains your body’s nutritional supply
You might think you’re getting enough nutrients through healthy eating but there’s no such thing as a perfect diet. Healthy food is loaded with minerals and vitamins but once you get pregnant you need to increase your supply.
That’s because your body is already using what you have to ensure your baby develops properly and what is left isn’t always enough to maintain your nutritional needs at the same time if your only supply is food. Having a healthy pregnancy means that both you and the baby are okay.
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iv.Ease uncomfortable pregnancy symptoms
Pregnancy will come with symptoms like extreme morning sickness in some women. That can take a toll on your body and in the process, you end up losing more nutrients than you are gaining.
The nausea and vomiting can make it hard for you to stomach the healthy foods you need and that’s where supplements come in to fill in in the gap.
They’re not a replacement for food but they can maintain your health and ease symptoms like fatigue and nausea.
v.Prevents mood disorders
Your mental health is also a huge part of a healthy pregnancy. Unfortunately, prenatal depression is something that affects so many moms-to be and certain circumstances like a history of depression can predispose you to this.
Prenatal supplements can be both a preventative and treatment option for you. Some that work are supplements containing folate and omega 3 fatty acids.
Before settling on any supplements, you first have to consult your doctor so that they can recommend the right ones for you. You should also note if you’re experiencing negative side effects like headaches or bloating talk to your doctor about your concerns.