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Supplements in Pregnancy

During pregnancy, it's important to focus on a balanced and nutritious diet to support the health of both you and your baby. In addition to a healthy diet, taking a good pregnancy multivitamin can help ensure you're getting all the necessary nutrients. However, it's essential to consult with your midwife or consultant before starting any new supplements in pregnancy to ensure they are appropriate for your individual needs. Here are some points to consider regarding pregnancy multivitamins, commonly recommended supplements, and vitamins to avoid during pregnancy in the UK.

Taking a pregnancy multivitamin:

A pregnancy multivitamin is formulated to provide the essential vitamins and minerals needed during pregnancy. It can be a convenient way to supplement your diet, but it should not replace a healthy eating plan. Look for a prenatal multivitamin that contains the following:

1. Folic acid: This is usually recommended to be taken before conception and during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. It helps in the development of the baby's neural tube and reduces the risk of certain birth defects. The recommended dose is 400 micrograms (mcg) per day.

2. Iron: Pregnant women often require additional iron to support the increased production of red blood cells. Your midwife or consultant may recommend an iron supplement if your iron levels are low. It's best to get your iron levels checked through a blood test before starting a supplement.

3. Vitamin D: This vitamin is important for bone health and immune function. In the UK, it is recommended that pregnant women take a daily supplement containing 10 micrograms (mcg) of vitamin D throughout pregnancy and while breastfeeding.

4. Other essential nutrients: Pregnancy multivitamins may also provide additional vitamins and minerals, such as calcium, iodine, and omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial during pregnancy.

Vitamins to avoid during pregnancy:

While it's important to supplement certain vitamins during pregnancy, there are some vitamins that should be avoided or limited due to potential risks. Here are a few examples:

1. Vitamin A: High levels of vitamin A can be harmful to the developing baby. Avoid taking vitamin A supplements, including fish liver oil supplements, and be cautious of excessive intake from food sources like liver or high-dose supplements.

2. Vitamin E: While small amounts of vitamin E from food sources are safe, high-dose vitamin E supplements should be avoided as they may increase the risk of complications.

3. Herbal supplements: Some herbal supplements are not recommended during pregnancy due to limited safety data. Always consult with your midwife or consultant before taking any herbal or alternative remedies.

Remember, it's essential to discuss any supplements or multivitamins with your midwife or consultant to ensure they are appropriate for your specific needs. They can provide personalized advice based on your individual circumstances and any underlying health conditions you may have.

Did you know we offer a FREE Face-to-Face Pregnancy Class at our Hub in Leamington Spa? Click the below link to book your space today.

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