18 January

What are antenatal vitamins?

What are antenatal vitamins and Do I need to take them?

Antenatal vitamins are vitamin and mineral nutritional supplements useful for women who are pregnant, are planning a pregnancy or are breastfeeding. Women who are planning a pregnancy should be given pre-conception advice, which includes information on folic acid and vitamin D supplements along with healthy and nutritious eating. 

Depending on their eligibility, pregnant women should be able to receive free antenatal vitamins under the various government schemes. Folic acid is essential for the development of the neural tube of the baby, the structure that forms the brain and spinal cord. Lack of, or too little, folic acid in the mother's diet can lead to birth defects called neural tube defects, for example, spina bifida. Women planning to conceive should take 400 micrograms daily from when they start trying to become pregnant and for the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. Even if you have not taken folic acid before becoming pregnant, you should start as soon as possible.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D plays an important role during pregnancy. It helps the baby to develop healthy bones and teeth. Recent studies have linked low levels of vitamin D in pregnancy with pregnancy diabetes and pre-eclampsia as well as low birth weight. All pregnant and breastfeeding women should take a daily vitamin D supplement.

Some women may feel nauseous while taking antenatal vitamins.Always contact your doctor before starting on any medication including your antenatal vitamins. And always remember, there is no supplement to healthy eating. Eat a balanced and nutritious diet, through our pregnancy and make sure you are also active unless you have a condition which warrants bed rest. Enjoy your pregnancy. Be happy.

About our blogs

We have put together weekly developments during pregnancy. These articles are only for information. Every pregnancy is different and every woman's experience may be different. We also have articles relating to women's health, infertility and plan to add information about newborn care. Through the blogs, videos and our online consultation services, we are trying to empower mothers (as well as soon-to-be-moms) with health information which is easily understandable. Our mission is to help mothers have a happy pregnancy and a very happy postpartum experience. 

Have a passion to write, want to share a pregnancy story... Send in your articles, our team of experts will go through it and publish it on our website. 

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Pregnancy brings a new meaning to the concept of beauty to a woman. It is a period of immense joy, excitement and anxiety. The feeling of carrying a little soul within you is beautiful.

Last modified on Monday, 06 August 2018 10:07
Dr Padma

Dr Padma is a Family care physician and is the Founder and CEO of MedHealthTV.


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