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Prenatal Vitamins: The Basics

Daily Health Tips update for August 22:

Many expectant moms want to give their babies a head start on health and choose to take prenatal vitamins. But why is it important to take prenatals and what is in them that makes them different from regular multivitamins?
  • Iron – Prenatals help increase the body’s amount of iron. Pregnant women need more iron to nourish the baby and because blood volume expands with pregnancy. Iron is necessary to help carry oxygen in your blood.
  • Folic Acid – This member of the vitamin B complex is another pregnancy nutrition need. Folic acid is essential for cell division and may help prevent certain birth defects including spina bifida and anencephaly.
  • Pre-Baby Nutrition – Taking a multi before you get pregnant is a good way to prepare your body to nourish a baby.
While standard multis may contain the same nutrients as prenatal multis, they don’t always contain the higher doses of some nutrients that expectant mothers and their babies need. Some prenatals may also have added nutrients like the omega-3 essential fatty acid DHA and choline, both of which are important for baby’s brain development.

Source: WebMD

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