Multi Vitamins and Minerals During Pregnancy ?

Multi Vitamins and Minerals During Pregnancy ?

Approximately one quarter of adults in the United States use multivitamins, and this prevalence may increase following the recent recommendation that all adults take a multivitamin daily.Multivitamin Consumption refers to the intake of multivitamin supplements containing the recommended amounts of folic acid prior to pregnancy and iron during pregnancy.


Staying healthy during pregnancy depends on you, so it's crucial to arm yourself with information about the many ways to keep you and your baby as healthy as possible.

Before giving any supplements it is important to ensure that micronutrient supplements are not being provided from other sources, especially with regard to fat soluble vitamins such as vitamin A in pregnancy, so that excessive intakes are prevented. The multiple micronutrient supplements should be given until basic health services have been re-established and nutrient rich foods are once again locally available.

Calcium needs for pregnant women are the same as nonpregnant women: 1000 mg a day for adult women and 1300 mg a day for adolescents.It is especially important that you are receiving enough calcium when you become pregnant and that you continue to receive the right amount of calcium throughout your pregnancy.

Folic acid is important for spinal cord development of the baby. Pregnant women need 600 micrograms (mcg) a day. Synthetic folic acid added to fortified foods and vitamin supplements is almost twice as well absorbed as the folic acid in natural foods. On the basis of these data, the U.S. Public Health Service recommended that all women who could become pregnant consume 400 µg of folic acid each day.

In generally healthy persons, nutritional needs can be readily met by diet alone. However, recent evidence shows that the use of folic acid supplements in early pregnancy can dramatically reduce the incidence of neural-tube defects; thus, at least in some circumstances, vitamin intake can be suboptimal without there being any clinical evidence of deficiency.

Women need 30 mg of iron a day during the last half of pregnancy. An iron supplement may be necessary to meet this need.Iron deficiency anemia during pregnancy increases the chance of preterm delivery and delivery of a low birthweight infant.

It is especially important for women who can become pregnant to get enough folic acid. Folic acid, a B vitamin, helps prevent birth defects of the brain and spinal cord when taken before and very early in pregnancy. It is available in most multivitamins, as a folic acid-only supplement and in some foods.

Hypertension during pregnancy is a serious disorder.A study looked at how folic acid and multivitamin supplementation affects the rate of hypertension during pregnancy.That study suggested that those women who used a multivitamin during pregnancy were less likely to develop hypertension during the pregnancy.

Vitamin B12:Deficiency of vitamin B12 can cause anemia and irreparable damage to the nervous system. Vegans (people who eat no animal products), including those who are pregnant, should take a daily vitamin B12 supplement. Low maternal vitamin B12 levels are more commonly seen in smokers and are associated with low birth weights and premature birth. The RDA of vitamin B12 for pregnant women is 2.6 mcg per day from all sources. Lactating women require 2.8 mcg per day.

Vitamin B6: Women who have taken oral contraceptives during the months prior to pregnancy may be at increased risk of vitamin B6 deficiency. Vitamin B6 supplementation in the range of 10 to 25 mg three times per day has been reported to help relieve morning sickness.

Iodine: Adequate iodine intake is needed for fetal development and maintaining pregnancy. A healthful diet that includes iodized salt should supply ample iodine, particularly if a prenatal multivitamin that contains iodine is taken. No additional supplementation should be necessary.

Biotin: A deficiency of biotin (a B-complex vitamin) may occur in as many as 50% of pregnant women, and this deficiency may increase the risk of birth defects, according to one study. Taking 300 mcg per day can correct a biotin deficiency.

Zinc: Women may become marginally zinc deficient during pregnancy, particularly if they are supplementing with greater than 30 mg per day of iron. Studies conflict as to whether zinc supplementation is effective or necessary in well-nourished pregnant women. Most prenatal multivitamins contain sufficient zinc to prevent a deficiency.

Probiotics: Women who take supplemental Lactobacillus GG (a probiotic or “friendly” bacterium) during pregnancy and breast-feeding may help lower the risk of their child developing eczema, according to a one study. Not all probiotic supplements are equal, so particular attention should be given to obtaining a high-quality supplement of the right type.

Vitamin C: Vitamin C requirements are increased in pregnancy. Women with low intakes of vitamin C before and during pregnancy have increased risk of preterm delivery and of preeclampsia compared with women taking higher amounts. The recommended amount is 500 to 1,000 mg per day.

Prenatal vitamins don't contain any essential fatty acids either. DHA, an omega-3 fatty acid, is important for the development of your baby's brain, nerve, and eye tissue. The recommended intake of DHA during pregnancy is 300 mg a day.

Multivitamin supplements containing high doses of the vitamin B complex, as well as vitamins C and E, given to HIV-infected women during pregnancy and for more than 5 years after they gave birth reduced the symptoms of AIDS ,according to a study.All the women received periodic checkups for at least 4 years after giving birth, and about half of the women received checkups for more than 5 years after giving birth.The women taking multivitamins also had fewer symptoms of later stage HIV infection, such as mouth infections, mouth ulcers, or diarrheal diseases, than did women in the other group.

Preterm birth is associated with many health risks as well as a lower rate of infant survival during the first year of life. Women who take a multivitamin before conception have only half the risk of preterm delivery than those who wait until after becoming pregnant to start taking nutritional supplements.

Also known as toxemia, preeclampsia affects about 7 percent of first pregnancies and is a leading cause of premature delivery and maternal and fetal death.Women who are considering becoming pregnant may significantly reduce their risk of developing a common life-threatening complication called preeclampsia by taking a multivitamin supplement regularly three months before conception and during the first trimester of pregnancy.

Maternal vitamin A deficiency is common in developing countries. Beta-carotene may reduce pregnancy-related complications and mortality in such individuals. However, excess intake of vitamin A has been reported to increase the risks of some birth defects. Vitamin A supplementation above the RDA is therefore not recommended in pregnancy.Derivatives of vitamin A, retinoids, are used to treat skin disorders such as acne.Isotretinoin must not be used in women who are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or have a chance of being pregnant due to a risk of severe birth defects.

Pregnant women should avoid high doses of vitamins. An obstetrician can provide instructions regarding taking multivitamins during pregnancy.In many cases, taking beta-carotene (a building block of vitamin A, is a safer alternative to taking vitamin A. Unlike vitamin A, beta-carotene does not build up in the body, so it can be taken in larger amounts without the same risk. This makes it a better alternative for children, adults with liver or kidney disease, and pregnant women in particular.

People with high levels of iron in their diet are more likely to develop Parkinson's disease, according to a study .People with both high levels of iron and manganese were nearly two times more likely to develop the disease than those with the lowest levels of the minerals in their diets.

People who had higher than average dietary iron intake and who also took, on average, one or more multivitamins or iron supplements per day were 2.1 times more likely to be Parkinson's patients than those who had lower than average dietary iron intake and who took fewer than one multivitamin or iron supplement per day and for manganese it was 1.9 times more likely .

There are a few multivitamin and mineral preparations available, aimed at pregnant women. These tend to contain more folic acid, vitamin D, iron and calcium than standard products, and many do not contain vitamin A. For example, Sanatogen Pro-natal (Roche) contains seven minerals and 11 vitamins, including 700µg of folic acid in each one-a-day tablet.

Another product, Pregnacare (Vitabiotics) contains 16 vitamins and minerals, with each tablet supplying 400µg folic acid. Pregnacare tablets also contain 3mg betacarotene, a precursor of vitamin A. Both these products can be used before, during and after pregnancy. However, they are not necessary if the woman has a balanced diet and takes her folic acid supplements as recommended.

So,dont take more of a multivitamin than is prescribed for you or is directed on the package. Large doses of multivitamins can be dangerous.Your pharmacist has more information about multivitamins written for health professionals that you may read.

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