Community Curated • Updated 03, 2019
A healthy and well-balanced diet should be a part of everybody’s life - whether it’s young children, expecting mothers, or the elderly, there’s absolutely no exception. Getting in the right ingredients can make all the difference for your body and how you feel throughout the day - you’ll feel more energetic, have a better immune system and in the long term, you can expect to have a longer and healthier life in general.
It’s often said for women who are pregnant that they’re eating for two - and this is no joke. Women who are carrying should be very careful in terms of what they eat and put in and on their bodies. The baby that’s inside them has no other alternative to feed itself, other than what the mother herself chooses to consume.
But, sometimes you can’t get all the healthy stuff in your body at the same time, on the same day, and even in a longer period of time. There are some elements that we continually lack and which are best to take as supplements, in order to make sure that you’ve got the essential healthy stuff covered.
Pregnancy vitamins are one of those food supplements that are always a good idea to take even before getting pregnant, in the period of conception, as well as during pregnancy, and sometimes also even while breastfeeding. Pregnancy vitamins help to support the proper and healthy growth of the baby, and also prevent neural birth defects.
Nowadays there are lots of pregnancy vitamins brands that offer all kinds of combinations that are supposed to benefit both the mother and the baby. And we know that choosing among them, especially in those confusing times of pregnancy when you’re trying to do everything right for you and your baby, can even turn into a stressful task. With our guide and careful selection of the best pregnancy vitamins currently on the market, we’re going to try and save you from some additional trouble and allow you to direct that extra energy you could’ve spent browsing aimlessly through products to other things.
In our guide, we have a selection of the best vegan pregnancy vitamins, best pregnancy vitamins in gummy form, as well as info on what’s the best overall option for you and your baby. Make sure to go through the whole text for complete info on the best pregnancy vitamins products! And, if you want to know more about pregnancy vitamins in general, you can check out our special article on why are they important.
What follows below is our FAQ section where you can find answered some of the most frequently asked questions when it comes to pregnancy vitamins.
Another brand of prenatal multivitamins that makes Amazon’s Choice list, Garden of Life is a perfect choice for women that want to make extra-sure the vitamins they take are from nutritious and organic whole foods. This product is also especially convenient for vegan moms. This particular variety of Garden of Life contains folate, also commonly known as vitamin B9, and is one of the most essential nutrients for the healthy development of your baby. Vitamin B9 helps in the prevention of neural tube defects and is particularly important for the early stages of pregnancy. So when you’re searching for prenatal vitamins, it’s highly recommended that you search for ones that contain folate, and one of the overall good-quality options you can find is definitely the Garden of Life pack of 21 multivitamins. Some of the important vitamins that the Garden of Life contains are vitamins A, C, D and E, and the usual manganese, iron, biotin, plus elements of organic ginger and lemon peels to fight nausea, something we know a lot of pregnant women have trouble with. Vegetarian and vegan-friendly and gluten and dairy free, they will surely manage to satisfy even the most specific needs of moms and moms to be out there! A lot of customers opt for this product, in fact, because of its folate content - something you shouldn't mistake with its synthetic alternative, which is folic acid. This product doesn't contain DHL though, which you may consider a downside, but if you do decide to use it, you can always get other supplements to make up for it.
The Nature Made contains one of the most essential nutrients that you need in and around the time of pregnancy, and that is the DHA, an omega-3 fatty acid. This nutrient, necessary for the proper development of the baby’s eyes and brain, is something that a lot of other prenatal vitamin brands don’t have, so you’d often need to take it as a supplement. This is not the case with Nature Made, though, which makes it one of the DHA + best prenatal vitamins out there (no wonder then that it’s on Amazon’s Choice list). These multivitamin capsules should be taken once a day; they don’t contain any colors or flavors and are pretty easy to swallow, coated with a soft gel, making them easier on your throat and tongue. Besides the 200 mg of DHA - which is the usual recommended daily dose for pregnant women - the Nature Made also contains all the basic stuff you’d wish in multivitamins, such as Vitamin C and D, magnesium, folic acid, biotin and many more. Because of its additional content of DHA, a lot of mothers and mothers to be have opted for the Nature Made, because they won't need to take additional supplements for the omega 3 like they would with other prenatal vitamins. Some reviewers have been complaining about the smell, noting the fishy smell of the tablets and a bit of an unpleasant aftertaste in the mouth. Also, keep in mind that folic acid might not be suitable for some women’s bodies.
The Vitafusion is probably the most popular brand of gummy prenatal vitamins, which is why they’re also on Amazon’s Choice list and have one of the biggest numbers of Amazon reviews. Great for pregnant women with more sensitive stomachs and palates, these gummies come in a variety of flavors and are easily chewable (in fact, in 2018, Vitafusion won the Chef's Best Excellence Award!), without any artificial sweeteners or high fructose syrup. They also don’t contain any synthetic dyes (like FD&C), and no allergens like gluten and dairy. In fact, Vitafusion covers the essentials you need during your pregnancy with vitamins such as A, C, D, E, B6, and B12, as well as omega 3 fatty acids and zinc. One downside is that it contains folic acid instead of folate, so if you’re one of those women that can’t metabolize folic acid, search for a product that contains its natural counterpart. Another downside to gummy vitamins is that they usually don’t contain as many nutrients as do the regular tablets, which is also why the Vitafusion is lacking iron for example - although we’re sure women who suffer from bloatedness or constipation will rejoice upon reading this. Nevertheless, iron is very important during pregnancy and you should make sure it’s regularly kept in check.
The Baby & Me MegaFood prenatal vitamins are definitely a favorite with women who have trouble navigating changing moods and persistent nausea during pregnancy. These tablets (4 a day) can be taken any time of the day, regardless of whether your stomach is empty or full - cause we all know nausea doesn’t choose when it strikes! - so you don’t have to worry about timing and keeping a regular schedule (you do need to take them every day though). The ingredients that you can find in the Baby & Me are the usual super-beneficial stuff you should get in a prenatal vitamin tablet, such as: Vitamins A, C, D, E, Vitamin B1, B2, B6, B12, iron, folate, calcium, zinc and magnesium. Enriched with herbs such as chamomile, dandelion, spinach, raspberry leaf, and ginger root, you can be sure this product is going to keep you and your baby healthy. They will also greatly help expecting moms by regulating their mood, their balance and affect their strength so they don’t tire easily and will also help fight episodes of nausea. As with most natural products, the absence of artificial flavors is something that we’re not usually used to, and a lot of people might not find these kinds of tablets particularly tasty. The high iron levels might also cause constipation in some women if they’re more prone to it.
The Rainbow Light is one of the best-known brands for prenatal vitamins and also one of the most popular. This particular version is actually redone and the usual bigger tablets are replaced with mini-tablets, making them much easier to swallow to the great satisfaction of mothers everywhere! The Rainbow Light is truly a powerhouse of nutritional elements that every mother needs, regardless of whether she’s planning on having a baby, already expecting or in the very process of nursing her little one. Because they’re smaller in size, they should be taken three times a day, either all together or separately, between or during meals. This won’t a problem though, because they’re really easy to digest (dissolve almost instantly, even while on the tongue!), and are appropriate for mothers who are vegetarians or vegans, or who are gluten intolerant as well. The Rainbow Light contains the perfect prenatal blend of nutrients, such as: potassium and magnesium - which help to ease discomforts during pregnancy; vitamin B complex for better cell growth and stronger immune system, as well as more energy and stress reduction. The tablets also contain folic acid which is crucial for promoting healthy spine and brain development. Other beneficial nutrients that are present are vitamin C, copper, iron, biotin and more. All of them are natural ingredients, and no artificial preservatives, flavors, colors or sweeteners are used (which is why some women have complained of the slightly weird taste, but it’s worth going through it if it’s keeping you free from artificial chemicals). A possible downside is, in fact, the folic acid which they should’ve probably put in folate form, its natural counterpart. This way women who can’t metabolize folic acid should search for another product. The Rainbow Light doesn’t contain any major allergens, while it also contains probiotics and enzymes, so you wouldn't worry about any stomach issues arising out of your daily vitamin intake. Another great thing about this brand is that they’re putting a lot of care in the bottles - so for those mommies who are more eco-friendly and eco-conscious, its good to know that the Rainbow Light bottles are recyclable and BPA-free, which makes this a very sustainable packaging.
Well, this is Amazon’s own vitamin brand so it’s no wonder it’s on Amazon’s Choice list. It’s also worth noting that these are extremely-affordable prenatal vitamins. While not the most popular vitamins of this kind on the market, they’re still very alluring because of their price. These vitamins also come in a gummy form in different flavors, which means they’re a better option for women who have trouble swallowing or digesting tablets. They also don’t contain the usual allergens like wheat, dairy, egg or soy. One of the downsides of this brand is that it doesn’t contain folate or methylfolate, but its synthetic form, the folic acid, which can be problematic to absorb in some women, especially ones who have the MTHFR gene mutation that affects the body’s ability to metabolize folic acid - so if you have this kind of gene or are suspecting that you might have it, maybe this is not the best product for you. Solimo also doesn’t contain calcium, iodine, and iron, which is an additional downside to this product, because these are one of the essential nutrients a pregnant woman should take for a healthy baby’s development.
The SmartyPants are also one of the more affordable packs of prenatal vitamins on our list and seem to be pretty popular with Amazon users. The difference with these vitamins from the others so far on our list is that they’re not in tablet form, but are gummy vitamins (check out also the other gummies on our list, the Solimo, and Vitafusion prenatal vitamins). Look at them as the gummy bears in the world of vitamins - they are chewable and often much tastier than regular tablets, which is why a lot of women who can’t take regular tablets or pills opt for this kind of an alternative. These gummies contain the basic stuff you would need in prenatal vitamins: folate in its premium form as methylfolate which means it will get properly absorbed by your body; vitamin D in its D3 form for better immunity support and bone health; vitamin B12 in its premium form of methylcobalamin (the body’s preferred form), for better energy production, and, among other nutrients, it also has the super-important omega-3 (with balanced EPA and DHA), which means you won’t have to get additional omega-3 supplements! SmartyPants vitamins don't contain GMO and have been tested for common allergens such as soy, gluten, wheat, peanuts, milk, eggs, as well as shellfish and fish allergens. They also don’t contain any colors or artificial flavors or sweeteners, and yet they still remain pretty yummy on the tongue!
Getting the right amount of vitamins, as well as the right combination of vitamins during pregnancy has proved to be very beneficial for the healthy growth of the baby in the womb.
The body needs vitamins, minerals and other types of nutrients so it can stay healthy and strong. During the months of carrying, because the baby gets all the nutrients from the mother, the body uses even more of these essential elements. That’s why during it’s so important to take vitamins that are good for you and your baby so both of you can remain healthy throughout the whole period of pregnancy.
Pregnancy vitamins should also be taken when you’ve got certain conditions, such as food allergies, or food preferences.
The most important vitamins and nutrients the prenatal vitamins should contain are the following: folic acid, iron, calcium, iodine, vitamin D, and also the omega-3 fatty acids.
Folic acid, a type of vitamin B, helps in the proper neural and spinal development of the baby - more specifically it helps prevent neural tube birth defects. Since these defects can develop pretty early in pregnancy (in the first 28 days of conception), it’s recommended that women should take prenatal vitamins that contain folic acid as soon as they find out they’re pregnant, and even during conception. The recommended daily amount of folic acid is 400mcg.
Iron helps in strengthening the blood and also helps in prevention against anemia. Iron is one of the most beneficial nutrients there are, that aids the building of new tissue, by helping the blood carry enough oxygen. Pregnant women are especially prone to become anemic while carrying, which is why iron is one of the most important nutrients you have to take during pregnancy. Too much iron can cause constipation though, so be careful with the dosage.
Calcium is important for the bones and it helps maintain bone density in the mother while she’s carrying, while also boosting bone growth in the baby that develops in her stomach.
Iodine is a nutrient that keeps the thyroid gland in order since the thyroid can cause a lot of trouble in women during pregnancy. Healthy thyroid function while carrying is very important since it can also affect the baby. Iodine deficiency can also sometimes be the culprit behind miscarriages and stillbirths.
Vitamin D regulates the calcium and phosphorus levels in the body, which, in turn, help with the strengthening of the baby’s bones and teeth. Vitamin D is also important for preventing rickets, a condition in which the bone tissue softens, and which can be caused by vitamin D deficiency.
The omega-3 fatty acids are important for brain development of the baby, as well as their nerve and eye tissue. Fish is the best option for a natural source of the omega-3 nutrient - the only problem is that some fish can have high levels of mercury, which is actually unhealthy for the baby and mother.
These are the vitamins and nutrients that are most commonly considered as most important for pregnant women. But, every woman’s body, living habits, and diet habits are different from one to the other, which is why you should always consult with your doctor or gynecologist when it comes to taking pregnancy vitamins. If your body is lacking a particular nutrient more than another one, they can recommend a special type of prenatal vitamin combination.
Women who plan on conceiving should take prenatal vitamins even before getting pregnant. Some doctors even recommend that women who are in the age of reproduction and are planning to eventually conceive, take prenatal vitamins in regular doses.
When a woman finds out she’s pregnant, she should start taking prenatal vitamins as soon as possible. Sometimes it’s also recommended that women continue taking prenatal vitamins several months after giving birth and while they’re breastfeeding.
Taking pregnancy vitamins is important in every stage of your pregnancy.
Consult with your doctor or gynecologist when it would be the best time for you to stop taking prenatal vitamins. Usually, women stop taking them after they give birth, but doctors sometimes recommend their use even in the first months of breastfeeding.
Sometimes prenatal vitamins can cause certain side-effects, although they are considered safe to use and the side-effects are can be mediated by proper guidance from the gynecologist and the midwife.
Nausea is one of the most common side-effects that can occur in pregnant women, especially ones that are more prone to it during pregnancy.
Iron can cause constipation in some women.
Other potential side-effects of prenatal vitamins include: low appetite, diarrhea, dark stools, and upset stomach or cramps.
Sometimes other types of prenatal vitamins, such as chewable or liquid ones, fare better in some pregnant women.
It’s important to remember to drink lots of fluids and eat a fiber-rich diet when taking prenatal vitamins because it can mediate some of the side-effects from the vitamins.
Pregnant women need extra amounts of vitamins more than other people, because of the numerous changes that their body goes through during pregnancy - the body can’t always get everything that it needs from food only. Prenatal vitamins greatly help the healthy development of the baby in the womb. That’s why taking prenatal vitamins is highly recommended around the time of conceiving, pregnancy, and maybe even a little bit after giving birth.
Pregnancy vitamins or prenatal vitamins are a blend of vitamins made especially for the nutrient needs of pregnant women. When compared to regular multivitamins, they’re shown to contain a higher amount and special selection of certain nutrients that the body of a woman who’s carrying, as well as the developing baby inside of her, need.
Prenatal vitamins are a very important element in the daily body care ritual of a pregnant woman. A special blend of multivitamins and other types of nutrients, the pregnancy vitamins will give the body additional support and strength during those wonderful, but also demanding months of pregnancy.
You can get pregnancy vitamins over the counter, but it’s also a good idea to talk to your doctor about them and see which types of vitamins your body needs most.