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Top 10 Prenatal Vitamins for 2019

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Recommend a Supplement

Prenatal supplements are a vital part of a healthy nutrition program for women before and during pregnancy.

Such supplements contain not only similar nutrients that you would find in a women’s multivitamin product.

However, in addition to these nutrients, prenatal supplements also contain certain nutrients that are especially beneficial to the healthy growth and development of babies.

Related: 11 Best Supplements for Women’s Overall Health

What’s inside prenatal supplements?

Prenatal supplements contain many of the same vitamins and nutrients you would find in a typical multivitamin. Some of these nutrients include:

Two of the most common nutrients found in greater amounts in prenatal supplements than multivitamins are iron and folic acid (1,2).

Folic acid is important since it can help prevent neural tube defects, such as brain or spinal cord problems, in babies (1).

Iron is important since it helps support the healthy growth and development of the baby. Also, it can prevent anemia in the mother.

Anemia means that there aren’t enough red blood cells in the body to carry oxygen to cells and tissues (3).

Pregnant women are at higher risk of developing anemia since the body produces a lot of blood to send to the growing baby.

Symptoms of anemia may include weakness, fatigue, dizziness, or shortness of breath, to name a few.

10 Best Prenatal Vitamins

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1. Actif Organic Prenatal Vitamin

Actif Organic Prenatal Vitamin

This organic prenatal formula contains everything you need to keep mom and baby nourished during pregnancy.

As far as content, this prenatal supplement contains 100-percent DRV vitamin D3, 100-percent folate, and 30 milligrams iron, which meets above and beyond iron needs for the pregnant woman.

Also, it contains 100-percent or more of 13 other nutrients you may find in a multivitamin product.

Also, it includes 35 milligrams EPA and 200 milligrams DHA omega-3 fatty acids beneficial for brain health. Not to mention that it includes a prenatal blend of various natural compounds like peppermint and ginger for relieving nausea and digestive enzymes for further gut health support.

The only downside is that this supplement only contains 15-percent of the DRV for calcium. Therefore, you will have to make sure to consume calcium through your diet through such dairy products, fortified plant-based milk, leafy greens, or soy, to name a few.

Highlights

  • Contains essential nutrients pregnant women need for health
  • Vegetarian-friendly
  • Includes omega-3 fatty acid DHA for brain health

Pros

  • Vegetarian
  • Organic-sourced, 100% natural, non-GMO ingredients
  • Includes 100%+ DRV of folate, iron, and vitamin D3 for pregnant women
  • Only one soft gel per dose
  • Contain digestive support and probiotics
  • Only about $43 on Amazon.com for a 3-month supply

Cons

  • Not certified suitable for vegans
  • Not BBB-accredited

Get it On Amazon

2. Prenatal Plus™ by 1st Phorm

Prenatal Plus By 1st Phorm

This comprehensive prenatal vitamin has it all. Besides containing greater than 50% of three essential nutrients a pregnant woman needs, it’s also vegan-friendly and chock full of bonus ingredients.

In three vegan capsules, it contains 100% of the daily recommended value (DRV) for adults of 17 vitamins and minerals.

Of these vitamins and minerals, this supplement contains 350-percent DRV of vitamin D3, 25-percent DRV of calcium, 67% DRV iron for pregnant women (18 milligrams), and 200% DRV folic acid (800 micrograms).

These nutrients are vital for optimal health during pregnancy for baby and mom.

And as a bonus, this supplement contains 35 milligrams of ginger root to help relieve nausea. Not to mention, it contains other natural ingredients like a probiotic blend as well as an antioxidant fruit and vegetable blend.

Since it doesn’t provide the daily recommended value of calcium, you will have to get most of your calcium through your diet. You will have to make sure to consume calcium through dairy products, fortified plant-based milk, leafy greens, or soy, to name a few.

Also, if you’re looking for omega-3 fatty acids, you will have to get this from other sources in your diet like fatty fish, nuts, seeds, avocado, or plant-based oils.

Highlights

  • Contains 4 of the essential nutrients pregnant women need for health
  • Vegan formula
  • Includes bonus ingredients like ginger and antioxidants

Pros

  • Contains ample amounts of nutrients pregnant women need
  • Suitable for vegans
  • Contains anti-inflammatory antioxidants
  • Includes Ginger for nausea
  • No aftertaste noted by consumers
  • A+ BBB rating

Cons

  • Only contains 2/3 DRV iron for pregnant women
  • Just 25-percent DRV calcium
  • Three capsules required per dose
  • No omega-3 fatty acids
  • About $40 for a one-month supply ($38.99 on the company website)

Get it On 1stphorm.com

3. Zahler Prenatal DHA

Zahler Prenatal Dha

This premium prenatal formula contains a ton of nutrients within two soft gels.

As far as content, this prenatal supplement contains a whopping 333-percent DRV vitamin D3 (2000 IU), 167-percent folate, and 100% DRV of iron for pregnant women (27 milligrams iron).

Also, it contains 100-percent or more of 11 other nutrients you would find in a multivitamin product.

It also contains 566 milligrams of fish oil of which 300 milligrams is DHA, which is beneficial for brain health. It also contains choline, which can support fetal brain development as well as the antioxidant lutein, which benefits vision health.

One of the only downsides is that it only contains about 8-percent of the DRV for calcium. Therefore, you will have to consume foods like dairy products, fortified plant-based milk, leafy greens, or soybeans in your diet to ensure adequate calcium intake.

Highlights

  • Contains essential nutrients pregnant women need for health
  • Vegetarian, certified kosher
  • Includes omega-3 fatty acid DHA for brain health

Pros

  • Vegetarian
  • Includes 100%+ DRV of folate, iron, and vitamin D3 for pregnant women
  • Only two soft gels per dose
  • Only $1 per daily dose (~$30 per one-month supply on Amazon.com)

Cons

  • Not certified suitable for vegans
  • Only 8% DRV calcium
  • Soft gels on the larger side per consumer reviews
  • Not BBB accredited

Get it On Amazon

4. Mama’s Select Prenatal Multivitamin

Mamas Select Prenatal Multivitamin

This vegan-friendly prenatal vitamin may not be as well-known as other prenatal supplement brands, but it fits a lot of nutrition in one dose. In just one capsule taken daily, this prenatal supplement contains 100% of the daily recommended value (DRV) for adults of vitamin D3, folate, and of the DRV of iron for pregnant women.

It also contains 100% DRV of 5 other nutrients as well as over 50% of the DRV for 4 other nutrients commonly found in multivitamin products.

It only contains 8-percent of the DRV for calcium though. So, to help meet the remainder of your calcium needs daily, you will have to make sure to consume calcium through your diet. You can receive calcium through dairy products, fortified plant-based milk, leafy greens, or soy, to name a few.

Highlights

  • Contains 4 of the essential nutrients pregnant women need for health
  • Vegan formula
  • Complete multivitamin

Pros

  • Contains ample amounts of nutrients pregnant women need
  • Vegan-friendly
  • Includes 100% DRV of iron for pregnant women
  • Easy to swallow
  • Only one capsule per dose
  • Less than $20 on Amazon.com for a 3-month supply

Cons

  • Just 8-percent DRV calcium
  • No added fish oil or antioxidants
  • Not BBB accredited

Get it On Amazon

5. One A Day Prenatal 1 Multivitamin Multimineral Soft gels

One A Day Prenatal 1 Multivitamin

This prenatal supplement means what it says and can fit a ton of nutrients in just one daily soft gel. One A Day contains 100% of the daily recommended value (DRV) for adults of vitamin D3, folic acid, and 1 milligram above the DRV of iron for pregnant women.

It also includes 15-percent of the DRV for calcium, as well as 650mg fish oil of which 200 milligrams are DHA and 35 milligrams are EPA.

Since it doesn’t provide the daily recommended value of calcium, you will have to get most of your calcium through your diet. You will have to make sure to consume calcium through dairy products, fortified plant-based milk, leafy greens, or soy, to name a few.

Highlights

  • Contains 4 of the essential nutrients pregnant women need for health
  • Vegetarian and gluten-free formula
  • Includes bonus ingredients like fish oil

Pros

  • Contains ample amounts of nutrients pregnant women need
  • Gluten-free, vegetarian
  • Includes 100%+ DRV of iron for pregnant women
  • Only one soft gel required per dose
  • Less than $30 per one-month supply
  • A+ BBB rating

Cons

  • Not suitable for vegans
  • Just 15-percent DRV calcium
  • Some fishy aftertaste per some consumer reviews

Get it On Amazon

6. Nature Made Prenatal Multi + DHA Liquid Soft gels

Nature Made Prenatal Multi Dha Liquid Softgels

In just one soft gel, this prenatal supplement contains 100% of the daily recommended value (DRV) for adults of vitamin D3, folate, and the DRV of iron for pregnant women.

It also includes 12-percent of the DRV for calcium, as well as 200 milligrams DHA and 28 milligrams EPA.

Since it doesn’t provide the daily recommended value of calcium, you will have to get most of your calcium through your diet. You will have to make sure to consume calcium through dairy products, fortified plant-based milk, leafy greens, or soy, to name a few.

Highlights

  • Contains 4 of the essential nutrients pregnant women need for health
  • Vegetarian and gluten-free formula
  • Includes bonus ingredients like fish oil compounds

Pros

  • Contains ample amounts of nutrients pregnant women need
  • No colors added
  • No artificial flavors
  • No preservatives
  • Contains fish oil components
  • Includes 100% DRV of iron for pregnant women
  • Only one soft gel per dose
  • Less than $20 for a 3-month supply
  • A+ BBB rating

Cons

  • Not suitable for vegans
  • Just 12-percent DRV calcium
  • Strong fishy aftertaste and odor (per consumer reviews)
  • Large pill size

Get it On Amazon

7. The Honest Co. Whole-Food Based Prenatal

The Honest Co Whole Food Based Prenatal

This whole-food based prenatal formula provides a safe supplement full of vital nutrients for the pregnant woman. Besides including 100% DRV of iron for pregnant women, it also contains vitamin D3 350% for pregnant women, 80% folate, and 100% or more of 11 other nutrients.

And as a bonus, this prenatal supplement contains a whole food complex that includes fiber-rich flax seed, antioxidant-rich organic kale powder, and nausea-fighting ginger, to name a few. Not to mention that it contains a fruit enzyme complex with bromelain that aids digestion.

The only downside is that this supplement only contains 10% calcium. Therefore, you will need to make sure you consume calcium through your diet such as through dairy products or fortified plant-based milks and milk products.

Furthermore, the Honest Co. vows to keep both mom and baby safe when taking supplements by providing an additive and preservative-free formula. Also, this supplement is free of most common allergens.

Highlights

  • Contains 4 of the essential nutrients pregnant women need for health
  • Vegetarian, non-GMO, and gluten-free formula
  • Includes anti-inflammatory antioxidants and natural digestive enzymes
  • Ginger included helping combat nausea and upset stomach

Pros

  • Contains ample amounts of nutrients pregnant women need
  • Free of gluten, soy, yeast, wheat, casein, sodium, dairy, eggs, and shellfish
  • Vegetarian and non-GMO
  • Free of sweeteners like high fructose corn syrup, artificial flavors, starch, dyes, or preservatives
  • Includes 100% DRV of iron for pregnant women
  • Has antioxidants for fighting inflammation
  • Ginger is in each capsule to help relieve nausea
  • Less than $20 per one-month supply
  • A+ BBB rating

Cons

  • Not certified suitable for vegans
  • Just 10-percent DRV calcium
  • Three capsules per dose
  • No omega-3 fatty acids
  • Vanilla coating on pill hard to tolerate for some, especially those with morning sickness

Get it On Amazon

8. Thorne Basic Prenatal

Thorne Basic Prenatal

This unique prenatal formula is full of nutrients pregnant women need as well as so much more to benefit overall health. Besides including 45 milligrams iron (167% DRV), it also contains vitamin D3 167% for pregnant women, 283% folate, and 100% or more of 15 other nutrients.

The only downside is that this supplement only contains 14% calcium. Therefore, you will have to make sure to consume calcium through dairy products, fortified plant-based milk, leafy greens, or soy, to name a few.

And as a bonus, this prenatal supplement contains no gluten, eggs, dairy, BPA, metallic colorants, artificial preservatives, high fructose corn syrup, or nut-based ingredients.

Highlights

  • Contains 4 of the essential nutrients pregnant women need for health
  • Gluten-free, egg-free, and nut-based ingredient free
  • No colorings or preservatives

Pros

  • Contains ample amounts of nutrients pregnant women need
  • Gluten-free, egg-free, and nut-based ingredient free
  • Includes 167% DRV of iron for pregnant women
  • Has antioxidants for fighting inflammation
  • Less than $30 for a one-month supply
  • A+ BBB rating

Cons

  • Just 14-percent DRV calcium
  • No added digestive health components
  • Not certified vegan-friendly
  • No omega-3 fatty acids

Get it On Amazon

9. Ritual

This innovative prenatal formula contains a ton of nutrients within a unique capsule that separates liquid and dry ingredients. Also, it’s a time-released formula that claims to help reduce nausea when taking this vitamin.

As far as content, this prenatal supplement contains a whopping 333-percent DRV vitamin D3 (2000 IU), 283-percent folate, and 18 milligrams iron.

In addition, it contains 100-percent or more of vitamin K, biotin, and choline, which are beneficial for blood clotting, liver health, and fetal brain health, respectively.

The only downside is that this supplement does not contain calcium for bone health and does not contain a comprehensive variety of nutrients found in other typical multivitamins.

Therefore, if you may have to take a separate supplement or be sure to consume calcium and other nutrients like vitamins A, C, and potassium in your diet. You will have to make sure to consume calcium through your diet through such dairy products, fortified plant-based milk, leafy greens, or soy, to name a few.

Highlights

  • Contains 3 of the essential nutrients pregnant women need for health
  • Vegan-friendly
  • Includes omega-3 fatty acid DHA for brain health

Pros

  • Gluten-free, vegetarian, non-GMO
  • Includes 100%+ DRV of folate and vitamin D3 for pregnant women
  • No fillers or additives
  • Only one capsule per dose

Cons

  • Not certified suitable for vegans
  • No calcium
  • Only 67% DRV of iron for pregnant women
  • Limited amounts of other nutrients typically found in multivitamins like vitamin C and potassium
  • $35 per one-month supply
  • Not BBB accredited

Get it On Ritual.com

10. New Chapter Prenatal Vitamins

New Chapter Prenatal Vitamins

This unique prenatal formula is full of nutrients pregnant women need as well as so much more to benefit overall health. Besides including 100% DRV of iron for pregnant women, it also contains vitamin D3 167% for pregnant women, 90% folate, and 100% or more of 13 other nutrients.

And as a bonus, this prenatal supplement contains fermented soy as well as several beneficial compounds.

For digestive health, it contains 62 mg of ginger. And for fighting inflammation, this prenatal contains a prenatal herbal blend, a cruciferous sprouts blend, and organic turmeric.

The only downside is that this supplement only contains 6% calcium. You will have to make sure to consume calcium through your diet through dairy products, fortified plant-based milk, leafy greens, or soy, to name a few.

Highlights

  • Contains 4 of the essential nutrients pregnant women need for health
  • Vegetarian and gluten-free formula
  • Includes anti-inflammatory antioxidants and gut-friendly fermented soy
  • Ginger included helping combat nausea

Pros

  • Contains ample amounts of nutrients pregnant women need
  • Gluten-free, vegetarian, non-GMO
  • Includes 100% DRV of iron for pregnant women
  • Has antioxidants for fighting inflammation
  • Ginger in each tablet for relieving nausea
  • A+ BBB rating

Cons

  • Not certified suitable for vegans
  • Just 6-percent DRV calcium
  • Three tablets per dose
  • Caused nausea for some consumers
  • Almost $40 for about a one-month supply ($38.18 per 96 tablets)

Get it On Amazon

How these products were evaluated

The products that made the top 10 prenatal supplements fulfilled the criteria for what it takes to be a good prenatal supplement. This criterion includes:

  • The inclusion of essential nutrients for a healthy pregnancy like vitamin D, iron, and folate/folic acid (1,2). Vitamin D and calcium are especially important in the third trimester when the baby’s bones are rapidly growing. Vitamin D aids calcium in optimal absorption in the body (4).
  • Adequate amounts of essential nutrients for pregnancy health. It was imperative that the products in the top ten list contained >50% of the vital pregnancy health nutrients like iron and folic acid/folate. It was a bonus if products contained >50% of vitamin D as well.
  • Inclusion of other nutrients that can benefit overall health such as B vitamins, potassium, or magnesium, to name a few.
  • Added ingredients like ginger for nausea, omega-3 fatty acids or other antioxidants for fighting inflammation, or choline for nervous system health benefits (1). Omega-3 fatty acids are important to help promote baby’s brain development.
  • Four-star reviews or higher by consumers online who have found improved health benefits by using the product. When supplements came close in the rankings, the number of top ten supplement lists a supplement was on helped break any ties.
  • Ease of taking the supplement such as how many pills, tablets, or soft gels per dose. The fewer pills you need to take daily, the better. Also, reviews from consumers helped show if the pills were easy to take, had an aftertaste or not, etc.
  • Value: Is this product budget-friendly and/or worth the cost?
  • Brand recognition: Does this product contain adequate reviews online to support its claims? Does it have a BBB rating?  Although this information does not always reveal the quality of a product, it can provide insight into the company history and customer service.

What makes a good prenatal vitamin?

Here is a summary of the daily nutrient recommendations of the most common nutrients that pregnant women need for optimal health during pregnancy (3).

  • Vitamin A and beta-carotene: 770 micrograms
  • Vitamin D: 600 IU (15 micrograms)
  • Vitamin E: 15 milligrams
  • Vitamin C: 80 to 85 milligrams
  • Thiamine:4 milligrams
  • Riboflavin:4 milligrams
  • Niacin: 18 milligrams
  • Pyridoxine: 9 milligrams
  • Vitamin B12:6 micrograms
  • Folic acid/folate: 400 to 800 micrograms
  • Calcium: 1000 to 1300 milligrams
  • Iron: 27 milligrams
  • Zinc: 11-13 milligrams

Also, some prenatal supplements can contain bonus ingredients. These extra compounds can help ease symptoms women may experience during pregnancy.

For example, about 70-percent of pregnant women experience morning sickness (5-MOD). Morning sickness involves nausea and vomiting, mostly in the first trimester, and can be especially uncomfortable.

It can also make it hard to consume enough nutrients that mom and baby need to stay healthy.

Therefore, some prenatal supplements may add natural ingredients like ginger that can help relieve morning sickness symptoms. Research shows that ginger can be a safe and effective supplement for decreasing nausea and vomiting for pregnant women with morning sickness (6).

Also, ginger research shows the herb to be safe for both mom and baby.

Prenatal Vitamins FAQ

What are prenatal vitamins?

Prenatal vitamins are supplements designed to provide the basic nutrient needs of pregnant women and their unborn children.

What are the benefits of prenatal vitamins?

Prenatal vitamin supplements are important because even if you consume a healthy diet, you will need to consume more of certain nutrients during pregnancy (1). These extra nutrients will be vital to support the proper growth and development of your baby. Therefore, a prenatal vitamin supplement can fill in any nutritional gaps that your diet may leave to ensure you and your baby are well-nourished during pregnancy.

How do prenatal vitamins work?

Prenatal vitamins can help fill nutritional gaps that your diet may have to ensure that you and your unborn child(ren) receive adequate nutrition.

What do prenatal vitamins help with?

Prenatal vitamins can provide essential nutrients that pregnant women need like calcium, vitamin D, iron, and folate. These nutrients are important for bone health (vitamin D and calcium), preventing anemia (iron), and supporting fetal spinal and brain health (folate).

In addition, some prenatal vitamins can also provide similar nutrient needs that standard multivitamins can provide.

Not to mention that some specialized prenatal vitamins can also provide antioxidants, digestive enzymes, probiotics, and/or digestive support compounds like ginger.

Should I take prenatal vitamins?

You need to speak to your doctor about taking prenatal vitamins and follow their recommendations.

If you consume a balanced diet of plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, then you may consume enough of the vital nutrients pregnant women should have for a healthy pregnancy.

However, you may need to take certain nutrients in supplement form that you need a bit more during pregnancy such as iron and folate.

And for those following meatless diet regimens, you may need to supplement vitamin B12. Also, if you don’t consume dairy products, you may need to consume a calcium supplement. Be sure to have your nutrient levels checked at your prenatal health appointments and ask what supplements your healthcare provider recommends.

What happens if I don’t take prenatal vitamins?

If you don’t take prenatal vitamins, you may be at increased risk for birth complications if you’re not receiving certain nutrients in your diet.

For example, folate deficiency can increase the risk of fetal spinal and brain defects, while not enough calcium or vitamin D could impact the bone health of the unborn child.

Be sure to talk with your healthcare provider to see what nutrients you may need to supplement to ensure you have the healthiest pregnancy possible.

How do I take prenatal vitamins?

Recommended Usage of Prenatal Vitamins

Before starting a prenatal supplement, be sure to consult with your doctor. This is because they will be able to tell you if any medicines you’re currently taking could interact with the supplement.

Such medicines could include diuretics, blood pressure medications, or NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) (7).

Using the information above, you could skim through the ocean of prenatal supplements on the market to find the right one for you.

Or, you could just choose from the top ten supplements on this list that have been hand-picked as the right balance of vitamins and nutrients for optimal pregnancy health.

What are the side effects of prenatal vitamins?

Precautions

Be sure to never take more than the recommended dosage of your prenatal supplement. This is because taking additional vitamins or other multivitamins with your prenatal supplement could lead to an overdose of certain vitamins (7). An overdose of fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, E, or K could cause serious side effects. Common, and less serious, side effects of prenatal supplements include upset stomach or headache.

When should I start taking prenatal vitamins?

According to medical experts at the Mayo Clinic, you should start taking prenatal supplements in the months before conception (8). It’s a good idea for all women of reproductive age to take a prenatal vitamin if they plan to have children.

Is it okay to take a prenatal vitamin if you are not pregnant?

Prenatal vitamins contain greater amounts of certain nutrients specifically for pregnancy health support. Although some claims say taking prenatal vitamins will give you thicker and stronger hair and nails, long-term intake may be harmful.

For example, the average adult between 19 and 50 years old only needs 18 grams of iron daily. Some prenatal supplements contain much more iron. Therefore, long-term intakes of iron, which can build up in the body, can be toxic and toxic and cause diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, or more serious symptoms (9).

Therefore, if you’re not planning on becoming pregnant, just stick to a daily multivitamin and healthy, balanced diet. And if your doctor feels you need further supplementation of any other nutrients, then take the recommended doses as prescribed.

Is it good to take a prenatal vitamin before you get pregnant?

Yes, if you’re planning on becoming pregnant, medical experts feel that it can be beneficial to take a prenatal vitamin during this time. Talk with your doctor about when you should start taking a prenatal vitamin.

Do prenatal vitamins increase the chance of pregnancy?

There is no known evidence that taking prenatal vitamins increase the chance of pregnancy, but they can decrease the risk of birth defects (10).

How much folic acid should be in a prenatal vitamin?

According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, pregnant women should consume at least 400 micrograms of folic acid daily (11).

What happens if you forget to take your prenatal vitamin dose for the day?

If you forget to take your prenatal vitamin, experts suggest you take the missed dose right away unless it is close to your next dose (7). You want to make sure not to consume too many of the high doses of nutrients in a prenatal vitamin within a 24-hour period.

How long does it take for prenatal vitamins to work?

Experts suggest taking a prenatal vitamin about one to two months before you are trying to conceive (10).

This is because it can take some time for your blood levels of nutrients to get to where they need to be for optimal pregnancy health.

Also, folic acid is very important for you to consume in the first trimester of pregnancy since neural tube defects can start forming by week six (1,10). And since you may not realize you are pregnant until weeks four to seven, then it’s best to start taking prenatal vitamins while you are trying to conceive (10).

How many prenatal vitamins should I take per day?

You should only take the recommended dose of prenatal vitamins each day that is on the package or recommended by your healthcare provider to prevent an overdose of certain vitamins, especially vitamin A.

This is because too much vitamin A during pregnancy can increase the risk of congenital malformations involving the central nervous and cardiovascular systems as well as spontaneous abortion (12). Therefore, be sure to only take the recommended dose of vitamin A daily that is on the package and no more.

What time of day should I take prenatal vitamins?

There is no specific time of day you need to take your prenatal vitamin. However, be sure it’s a time when you remember to take it each day. Also, you want to be sure to take your prenatal vitamin with at least one cup of water (7).  Medical experts at Mayo Clinic recommend taking your prenatal vitamin with a snack or before you go to bed at night (1).

How much are prenatal vitamins?

The cost of prenatal vitamins will vary depending on various factors. Such factors include the number of tablets per bottle, the ingredients included in the supplement, as well as if you purchase over-the-counter supplements or supplements through a doctor’s prescription. If you have medical insurance that has a pharmacy benefit, it may benefit you financially to ask your doctor for a prescription for prenatal vitamins.

Where can I buy prenatal vitamins?

You can buy prenatal vitamins in just about any supermarket pharmacy, drugstore, or online. You can also have your healthcare provider prescribe a prenatal vitamin for you. Whatever method you decide to purchase your prenatal vitamin, be sure to check with your doctor first to ensure that you choose one that is right for your nutritional needs.

What happens if a man takes prenatal vitamins?

Since prenatal vitamins do not contain any female hormones or prohormones, they cannot harm men in a hormonal way (13). However, just like with non-pregnant women that are not trying to conceive, the high doses of vitamin and nutrient levels can be harmful to men long-term.

This is especially true with iron since men only require 18 milligrams daily, while some prenatal vitamins may provide above this level.

And if you are looking to take prenatal vitamins preconception for your baby’s future health, it’s not necessary. Medical experts suggest that simply ensuring you consume enough folic acid, iron, and vitamin C, along with a balanced diet should be enough (13).

References
  1. Mayo Clinic (April 13, 2018) “Prenatal vitamins: Why they matter, how to choose.” https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/pregnancy-week-by-week/in-depth/prenatal-vitamins/art-20046945
  2. American Pregnancy Association (accessed September 23, 2019) “Nutrients and Vitamins For Pregnancy.” https://americanpregnancy.org/pregnancy-health/nutrients-vitamins-pregnancy/
  3. American Pregnancy Association (accessed September 23, 2019) “Anemia During Pregnancy.” https://americanpregnancy.org/pregnancy-concerns/anemia-during-pregnancy/
  4. NIH Osteoporosis And Related Bone Diseases National Resource Center (last reviewed October 2018) “Calcium and Vitamin D: Important at Every Age.” https://www.bones.nih.gov/health-info/bone/bone-health/nutrition/calcium-and-vitamin-d-important-every-age
  5. March of Dimes (last reviewed September 2017) “Morning Sickness.” https://www.marchofdimes.org/pregnancy/morning-sickness.aspx
  6. Stanisiere, J., Mousset, P.Y., and Lafay, S. (April 2018) “How Safe Is Ginger Rhizome for Decreasing Nausea and Vomiting in Women during Early Pregnancy?” Foods, 7(4):50.
  7. com (May 7, 2018) “Prenatal multivitamins.” https://www.drugs.com/mtm/prenatal-multivitamins.html
  8. Mayo Clinic (April 13, 2018) “Pregnancy week by week.” https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/pregnancy-week-by-week/in-depth/prenatal-vitamins/art-20046945
  9. Zeratsky, RD, LD, K. (July 21, 2017) “Is it OK to take prenatal vitamins if I’m not pregnant, and I don’t plan to become pregnant?” https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/expert-answers/prenatal-vitamins/faq-20057922
  10. Modern Fertility (February 2, 2018) “Should we all be taking prenatal vitamins?” https://modernfertility.com/blog/vitamins/
  11. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (February 2018) “Nutrition During Pregnancy.” https://www.acog.org/Patients/FAQs/Nutrition-During-Pregnancy
  12. Bastos Maia, S., et al. (March 2019) “Vitamin A and Pregnancy: A Narrative Review.” Nutrients, 11(3):681.
  13. Grunebaum, M.D., A. (March 15, 2019) “Is it safe if he takes his wife’s prenatal vitamins?” https://www.babymed.com/womens-and-mens-health/is-it-safe-if-he-takes-his-wifes-prenatal-vitamins

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