It’s a beautiful new year and of course, a time when you’ll reach for your medications due to the weather and other factors. We understand why you would opt for vitamins.
Your diet may not entirely include all the necessary vitamins and supplements your body and the baby need, but ingesting the right dose of vitamins and supplements religiously should be considered.
What are Vitamins and Supplements?
Vitamins can be defined as a type of supplement used by the body to perform different metabolic functions. Supplements are products that are of nutritional value, balance your health, and are taken as a complement to your diet.
The main significant difference between the two is that while vitamins are a component of food, supplements are not. They are synthetically derived to meet the body’s needs.
However, they cannot entirely be separated from each other. Both are two types of nutrients that should be included in your diet for your well-being and that of your baby.
When should you ingest vitamins and supplements?
There is no absolute time too early to start taking vitamins and supplements. Sometimes, pregnancy is not planned and even times it is, you can’t be certain as to when to expect it. Yet, it is advisable you still fix the tent for a rainy day.
Ideally, it is pertinent to start the consumption of vitamins at least 3 months before you fall pregnant. Once you are ready, you should start taking a daily dose of prenatal vitamins. This is because vitamins help to prevent neural tube defects, they will equally support the development of your placenta and fetus.
So, if you’re probably reading this and not yet pregnant but already looking forward to starting to have your babies, then you should commence the vitamin routine immediately.
Folic acid supplements and Vitamin D can also aid conception. Did you know that folic acid is an efficient supplement for non-pregnant women?
-First Trimester(0-12 weeks)
If you are already pregnant and missed the intake of vitamins probably because there was no prior knowledge of it and you fall within this second category, now is equally the best time to kick off.
The first trimester is the most critical stage of pregnancy because it is when the formation of the baby is at its crucial state. This is when the baby’s organs and structures are just beginning to experience development.
Supplements like iodine are essential for your baby’s brain development and also the nervous system. By the end of the 12th week, the baby's neural tube should have formed.
Below are some essential vitamins/supplements ideal for you and your baby:
-B-Complex: Remember we said vitamins are a part of supplements, right? Now, vitamin B complex is a type of supplement essential for maintaining good health. It helps in improving the immune system and curbs birth defects.
-Folic Acid: This is a nutrient in the vitamin B complex and the synthetic version of folate. The intake of folic acid cannot be over-emphasized as it aids in the formation of the baby and prevents other pregnancy complications that may pose a threat to your life or your baby’s.
Blood is required to supply oxygen to your body. If you are having a shortage of blood during pregnancy, you are likely to experience pale skin, lips, and nails, fatigue, dizziness, hypotension (low blood pressure), and shortness of breath alongside other symptoms.
All of these if not immediately tackled or well handled can lead to dysfunction. This is where folic acid plays an important role. Folic acids help the body make healthy cells. A pregnant woman’s hemoglobin level is supposed to fall between 12-16g/dl, any value below 12 is seen as iron deficiency and below 10.5 is seen as anemia.
Mama, folic acid is an important vitamin and shouldn’t be taken for granted. Please always ensure you set a reminder to take your folic acid pills.
-Ferrous Sulfate: This also is an iron supplement that will prevent you from the side effects that accompany iron deficiency. It is a natural occurrence that pregnancy can make your iron level drop too low, thereby leading to anemia. Intake of ferrous sulfate helps for the treatment or prevention of iron deficiencies in the body.
-Calcium: Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body needed for the repairs of body tissues, regular intake of calcium supplements reduces the risk of preterm delivery, stillbirth, and placental abruption.
Calcium is also essential for building strong bones and aiding bone development in babies. Calcium is also important for you because it prevents the trailing of your bones due to the stress of carrying the baby.
-Fish oil: This is a type of supplement that helps in regulating inflammation. It provides the body with omega-3 fatty acids that can significantly reduce blood triglyceride levels(a type of fat found in your blood) and aid the muscles.
It is also essential for the baby’s brain development. It can come in liquid, capsule, and pills. The taste might not be pleasant but think about its benefits and swallow away!
Some of these vitamins can be naturally found in foods such as animal meats, Fish, chicken, eggs, beans, lentils, and green leafy veggies. As much as vitamins and supplements are essential to the body, they cannot replace a healthy diet. Try as much as possible to keep a balanced diet.
Also, be conscious of the fact that some products may contain inactive ingredients that can give you allergic reactions or cause other health issues. Some are capable of also causing eye defects.
Mama, ensure to consult your medical practitioner or a health specialist before the consumption of any pill. We love a healthy and safe mama here at Babymigo.
Have a lovely week and remember to stay PreggySafe!