The Importance of High Quality Prenatal Vitamins

The Importance of High Quality Prenatal Vitamins

When you find out you're expecting, suddenly you’re flooded with advice on what to eat, what to avoid, and what vitamins and supplements to take. Prenatal vitamins in particular are strongly encouraged by doctors to promote a healthy pregnancy. But with so many options on the market, how do you know which prenatal vitamin is right for you and your growing baby?

The truth is, that prenatal vitamins can vary wildly in price and quality. Cheaper vitamins may contain fewer nutrients or use less bioavailable (absorbable) forms. This means your body won't be able to utilize the nutrients as well. Higher quality prenatal vitamins include optimal levels of key nutrients needed during pregnancy and use forms that are better absorbed and utilized.

Here are some reasons why it's worth investing in a good quality prenatal vitamin:

Folic acid - This B vitamin helps prevent neural tube defects in babies. Many cheap vitamins have only 400-800 mcg while quality prenatals contain at least 1000 mcg.

Iron - Pregnancy increases your iron needs. Iron in cheap vitamins may be poorly absorbed. Higher-quality iron forms like ferrous glycinate are gentler on your stomach.

Choline - This nutrient is vital for a baby's brain development but is not included in many cheap vitamin brands. Quality prenatal will have choline.

Vitamin D - Critical for maternal and fetal health, quality vitamins will contain vitamin D3, not D2. D3 is the preferable form.

Morning sickness formulas - Some premium prenatal brands offer formulas to help combat morning sickness.

Purity - Cheap vitamins may contain "fillers" while quality vitamins use cleaner, purer formulations.

While cost can be a factor, do keep in mind that you generally get what you pay for in terms of ingredients and potency. A quality prenatal vitamin from a reputable brand is a wise investment for this important time in your life. Be sure to choose one that contains optimal levels of nutrients like folic acid, iron, choline, and vitamin D3. Your body and growing baby will thank you!

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