Vitamins for pregnant women: which is better? Expert Reviews
Vitamins and minerals help to keep a person healthy and strong. During pregnancy, the child receives nutrients only from the mother's body. Therefore, a woman in this position (especially if two or more children are expected to be born) need to take significantly more useful substances so that the baby is not threatened.
Healthy food will fill the body with all micronutrients during pregnancy. However, it is very difficult to get enough of iron and folic acid simply from eating. And only special vitamins, which can be taken with useful products, "take care" of the happy state of mother and child. For example, scientists of the National Research Council for Health and Medicine in the United States have analyzed the IQ in 1000 families. As a result of the surveys, they proved that a lower level of intelligence was found in those children whose mothers during pregnancy were taking iodine in insufficient quantities.
It is important to note that women who are just trying to have a baby should also take vitamins for pregnant women. Which is better, the opinions of experts - all this must be carefully analyzed. Here are some tips:
- do not take any supplements without agreement with your gynecologist;
- make sure that the tablets have vitamin B6, its use will help reduce the feeling of nausea in the first trimester of pregnancy;
- taking the right amount of folic acid significantly reduces the risk of neural tube defects in the fetus.
Vitamins for pregnant women in comparison with conventional multivitamins have more nutrients that are needed during this period. The attending physician prescribes for each woman an individual set of drugs that can be purchased at pharmacies even without a prescription. They will perfectly help to saturate the mother and child organisms with substances that do not come in sufficient quantities from food. For example, you can buy only supplements of iron and calcium. And if you are a vegetarian or are allergic to certain foods, the doctor will write out specifically for you certain minerals.
Vitamins for pregnant women: which is better, reviews of specialists
Pregnancy is a period of rapid changes in the maternal body and nutritional needs. These changes allow a woman to meet the needs of a growing fetus and placenta. Dietary recommendations of gynecologists are focused on maintaining the necessary amount of micronutrients and adequate calorie intake, avoiding the intake of those substances that can harm a growing fetus.
The pharmacies have a huge selection of vitamin preparations. Before buying them, be sure to consult your doctor. It is he who advises you to choose those supplements that are right for you. Consider the list of the most important nutrients that play a key role in the growth and development of the unborn child:
- omega-3 - fatty acids;
Folic acid: tablets or foods?
The water-soluble vitamin of folic acid is an integral part of the synthesis and maintenance of DNA, the metabolism of amino acids, the production of red blood cells, the growth of the fetus and the placenta. It is found in many foods, but it is easier to digest from the leaves of green salad and black currant, spinach, parsley, broccoli, dogrose, horseradish, onion leeks, cabbage.
Convincing evidence and research by scientists from around the world confirm that folic acid reduces the risk of defects and neural tube diseases, congenital anomalies (heart disease, cleft lip and others). Therefore, all specialists recommend that this nutrient be used by pregnant women and those who plan to conceive a child.
At 7-8 weeks of pregnancy, the neural tube closes, and during this period, women are just beginning to learn about their situation. It is important to note that 50% of pregnancies are unplanned. In view of this, before the conception of the fetus is to take folic acid, so that the child is born healthy.
Doctors-gynecologists recommend pregnant women to use 600 mcg every day to 12 weeks, and those who plan conception - 400 mcg.
Omega-3 - fatty acids
Omega-3 (still known as N-3) is a long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid that can be found in many vitamin supplements for pregnant women, as they are very useful for the fetus and its nervous system, and also have a beneficial effect on brain development.
These nutrients are found in such products of vegetable origin: walnuts, soybean and rapeseed oil, flaxseed. Omega-3 is also found in oily fish (salmon, tuna, trout, sardines, mackerel) and in small amounts are found in shrimp.
Surveys of 2000 pregnant women, conducted by Australian scientists, have shown that eating fish oil (containing 800 mg of omega-3) reduces the risk of premature birth.
A similar analysis was conducted in Norway. Experts gave pregnant women a cod liver oil (1000 mg of omega-3). As a result, the fetus improved the coordination of hands and eyes. In addition, scientists have found that fatty acids reduce the number of manifestations of maternal depression.
After the studies, experts argue that to consume fatty acids in the form of tablets, you need 200 mg or twice a week to eat fish dishes.
It is an important fat-soluble nutrient. In addition, both vitamin D and D2 are synthesized in the skin, primarily through ultraviolet irradiation. In countries where the sun has limited effect on the skin, people, especially those who work in enclosed spaces, need to drink enriched milk and eat cheese products. Vitamin D is also found in egg yolks, in fatty fish and in serum. With its lack in pregnant women, the following problems may arise: premature delivery, increased risk of preeclampsia, cesarean section, intrahepatic cholestasis, gestational diabetes and others.
Vitamin D is responsible for maintaining a healthy bone tissue in the mother, fetus and newborn baby. During pregnancy, it should take no more than 15 mcg per day, as an overabundance of this nutrient also leads to adverse effects: disruption of the cardiovascular system, a negative effect on smooth and skeletal muscles, the risk of skin cancer. It is not recommended for pregnant women to stay in the sun for a long time.
Adequate intake of iron during pregnancy is very important because it depends on the increase in the mass of red blood cells in the blood and the satisfaction of oxygen needs, the normalization of uteroplacental blood circulation. Anemia in the mother leads to premature birth, to sudden death of the fetus and to depression. Therefore, all gynecologists recommend pregnant women to take a blood test and closely monitor the level of hemoglobin.
27 mg per day is the optimal iron for a pregnant woman, and for iron deficiency anemia 60-80 mg, which can be obtained by taking special vitamins. Their action was analyzed by scientists who found that iron preparations have no harmful effect on the mother and fetus. In some cases, constipation may occur. It is important to note that vitamin C improves the absorption of iron into the blood.
This nutrient is the most important ingredient in vitamins for pregnant women. After all, the normal development of the skeleton of the fetus, its teeth, heart, muscles and nervous system depends on it. Therefore, the mother needs to consume 1000 mg of calcium per day. It will also help pregnant women to strengthen the bones of their body. These drugs are especially important in the third trimester, when the fetus tries to absorb calcium in a greater degree.
Excellent sources of this microelement are milk, cheese, yogurt, broccoli and cabbage, orange juice, dried fruits (figs, dried apricots), bread, almonds, tofu (vegetable protein from soybeans).
If a pregnant woman does not consume enough calcium, the fruit will take it from the bones of the mother. This will lead to negative consequences, among which - violation of the musculoskeletal system, osteoporosis, fragility of bones.
It is a mineral that a human body needs for the production of thyroid hormones. During pregnancy, women need to take iodine to help develop the child's brain and nervous system. The daily norm is 220 mcg. Not all vitamins contain iodine, so carefully check its availability in the drugs you bought.
Its sources are such products: fish, cheese, milk, yogurt, whole-grain bread, iodized salt, fatty fish.
It is important to note that since 2009, in Australia, bread producers are required to add iodized salt to their product. This led to the fact that pregnant women and every resident of this country consumed about 54 micrograms per day of the substance. So the level of morbidity of the population has sharply decreased.
Remember: a serious iodine deficiency is the main cause of damage to brain areas in the human body!
The use of this substance is recommended for pregnant women to reduce the occurrence of nausea and vomiting in the morning. The daily rate is 1.9 mg.
The main source of vitamin B6 is ginger. Be careful when choosing the drugs of this microelement, because they may not be indicated dosage rates for pregnant women. Remember: the safe amount of ginger per day is 100 mg.
Other useful substances
The composition of vitamins for pregnant women can include such trace elements:
- Vitamin A - daily intake rate - 10,000 IU. May be toxic. The safest source is beta-carotene.
- Zinc - a day can take no more than 11 mg. This mineral well supports the immune system of the mother and fetus.
- Copper - 0,9 mg. The human body uses this microelement to form blood cells, as well as to maintain the health of the nervous system.
- Vitamin C - daily intake of 85 mg. This useful substance helps to assimilate iron well and maintain the immune system, especially during pregnancy. An excess of vitamin can damage a developing fetus.
- Other vitamins for pregnant women. Which are better? The specialists will help you to choose the necessary minerals: vitamin E (12 mg / day), thiamine (1.2 mg), riboflavin (1.2 mg), niacin (14 mg), vitamin B12 (2.2 mg), as well as fluorine, magnesium, biotin, phosphorus.
A healthy diet during pregnancy is of paramount importance, since it will not only be a source of nutrition for the mother and child, but also a guarantee of normal growth of the developing fetus. All principles for its organization must be discussed with your gynecologist.
Of course, every pregnant woman often feels hungry. But do not eat for two, even if in the near future a twin or triplet will be born. This will have a detrimental effect on the health of the mother. You just need to diversify the diet in order to get useful vitamins and minerals from food. For example, folic acid is an important microelement for fetal development. Tablets are not so nice to take as fresh parsley and lettuce leaves (they contain a sufficient amount of this substance).
Grains and cereals
These products are first-class sources of energy for the body. Bread from whole grains contains fiber, iron, a lot of vitamins and minerals necessary for mother and child. Cereals enrich the body with folic acid and beneficial microelements.
Look for products that include whole grains. For example, brown or wild rice, pasta, barley, white bread from cereals.
Vegetables and fruits
Useful fruit for pregnant women should occupy a special place in the daily diet. They provide both mother and child with important nutrients such as beta-carotene (helps in the development of cells and tissues of the fetus, lays the foundation in the formation of its immune system), vitamin C, folic acid and others.
During pregnancy, it is better to use such fruits: apricots, cherries, grapes, apples, kiwi, pears, strawberries, watermelon, blueberries, bananas and pomegranates. They not only enrich the body of the mother and child with vitamins, but also help to avoid problems such as constipation and the formation of hemorrhoids.
Vegetables for pregnant women are an important source of energy, minerals and fiber, which do not contain too many calories. They should become the main part of every meal. It can be both fresh vegetables and baked.
Potatoes, zucchini, tomatoes, cucumbers, sweet peppers, cabbage, mushrooms, carrots, pumpkin, spinach contain calcium, folic acid, vitamin C, iron, vitamin A, beta-carotene and fiber. Wash all foods thoroughly before use.
Meat, fish, eggs and legumes
The products of this group contain a lot of protein, as well as various vitamins and iron, which are important elements in the development of the unborn child, especially in the second and third trimesters.
Meat for pregnant women is certainly very useful. Pork, lamb, beef, chicken and turkey are the main sources of protein and vitamin B12. But these products contain a lot of saturated fat, which can raise the level of cholesterol in the blood. Therefore, in dishes you need to combine meat with vegetables to stay healthy.
Red fish to pregnant helps to enrich the body with protein and omega-3 fatty acids, which have a beneficial effect on the development of the child's brain. Avoid eating fish with a high content of mercury (swordfish, shark, king mackerel).
Vital microelements for normal development of the fetus can be obtained by using nuts. For pregnant women, this is a necessary product in the diet, as it contains iron, vitamin C, protein, calcium, vitamin E.
While waiting for the child, it is worth including eggs in the diet. They are rich in selenium, zinc, vitamins A, D, B. Do not eat raw and partially cooked eggs, as this will increase the risk of Salmonella disease, which can even go to the baby.
Calcium, contained in milk, cheese, yogurt, cottage cheese, helps in the development of the bones and teeth of a child. And vitamin D and protein will strengthen its immune system.
Milk for pregnant women is a source of nutrients and minerals. According to clinical studies, its use has a beneficial effect on the health of the mother and fetus. It is recommended to drink 3 glasses a day.
A good source of calcium, protein and vitamin D is cheese. For pregnant women it is worth choosing especially carefully to prevent consumption of the expired product.
As a result, we can conclude: a healthy diet is the best way to get vitamins and minerals necessary for a pregnant woman and a fetus. Including in the diet of dairy and meat products, vegetables and fruits, fish and cereals, you will take care of the normal development and growth of the child. In some cases, allergic reactions to different products may occur. For this purpose, experts recommend the use of vitamins, which will fill the entire lack of nutrients in the mother's body. After reading this article, you can easily choose vitamins for pregnant women (which is better, feedback from specialists will prompt). Approach this issue responsibly, because at stake - your health and your future child, and it, as you know, is the most valuable thing that a person can have.