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Why Take Prenatal Vitamins When Trying to Get Pregnant?

Vitamins when Trying to Get PregnantWhen you’re trying to conceive, you should start taking prenatal vitamins every day. Although we normally associate prenatal multivitamins with pregnant women, studies have shown that women trying to get pregnant can also benefit from taking these vitamins.

Although you can meet your nutritional needs through a balanced and healthy diet, busy family lives and demanding careers can make healthy eating nearly impossible. Most women don’t get all the nutrients and vitamins that their body needs by food alone. They need a prenatal vitamin to improve their odds of getting pregnant.

Did you know that a lack of nutrients and vitamins in your diet can lead to infertility? When you don’t get all the nutrients that your body needs, your menstrual cycle can be thrown out of whack and you can experience irregular periods and ovulation problems, as a result. So when you’re trying to get pregnant, take a prenatal vitamin every day to improve your odds of conceiving.

Think of your prenatal vitamins as a safeguard, or an insurance policy, that ensures that you’re getting all the nutrients that you need for a healthy body, and a healthy reproductive system.

Taking a Prenatal Vitamin Helps You Get Pregnant Faster

In a 2011 study, published in the journal Reproductive BioMedicine Online, found that women who are undergoing fertility treatments are more likely to conceive when they take a prenatal multivitamin supplement every day.

The study found that women who take a prenatal multivitamin were more likely to get pregnant, and 60 percent were still pregnant three months later. These women were also more likely to have fewer fertility treatments. Three-fourths of them got pregnant on the first cycle of their fertility treatment.

Because prenatal vitamins don’t have any side effects or harm effects, if you’re trying to conceive (TTC), it’s a good idea to start taking a prenatal vitamin every day.

Why Take Prenatal Vitamins, Not Regular Vitamins When TTC?

When you’re trying to get pregnant, it’s a good idea to switch to a prenatal vitamin. Regular over-the-counter multivitamins are fine when pregnancy isn’t on your mind. But when you’re TTC, the mega-doses of vitamins and minerals in a regular multivitamin can be harmful to the unborn baby.

Fat soluble vitamins – including vitamins A, D, E, and K – can build up to very high, toxic levels when you take too much. These vitamins are stored in your body. If you accidentally get pregnant, and you’re taking too much vitamin A, this can cause birth defects and other problems. For this reason, you need to switch to prenatal vitamins when you’re trying to conceive.

Get Lots of Folic Acid When Trying to Conceive

If you are TTC, you need to start taking a prenatal multivitamin with at least 600 micrograms of folic acid. This water-soluble B-vitamin has been proven to decrease your baby’s risk of neural tube defects. All women trying to get pregnant need to start taking a folic acid supplement, or a prenatal vitamin, at least one month before you conceive.

Neural tube defects often develop in the very early weeks of pregnancy, before a missed period, and before you know that you’ve conceived. A lack of folic acid (or folate) in your diet can increase your risk, so you definitely need to get this vitamin in your diet when you’re trying to get pregnant.

In addition to finding a prenatal vitamin with 600 to 800 micrograms of folic acid, you should eat plenty of folate-rich foods and vegetables, including spinach and other leafy green vegetables, oranges and citrus fruits, whole grains, nuts, legumes, fortified cereals and breads.

Zinc Increases Fertility

An essential mineral that you need to get in your diet when trying to conceive is zinc. Most people are deficient in zinc, since the mineral is striped out of many foods during the refining and manufacturing process. Studies have shown that zinc actually increases fertility for both men and women. In men, zinc boosts healthy sperm production. In women, zinc promotes healthy cell division, which is crucial in the early stages of conception and fetal development.

A good prenatal vitamin should include zinc, but make sure that you also load up on zinc-rich foods when you’re trying to get pregnant. This includes fish, pumpkin seed, mangoes, and oysters.

What’s the Best Prenatal Vitamin?

I can’t recommend any specific brand of prenatal vitamin. You need to talk to your healthcare provider or OB/GYN about what he or she recommends in your individual case.

Keep in mind that not all prenatal vitamins are created equal, so you need to find one that contains at least 400 micrograms of folic acid. Your prenatal multivitamin needs to also contain vitamin D, calcium, vitamin C, thiamine and riboflavin, niacine, vitamin B12, vitamin E, zinc and iron.

Women react differently to the various types of prenatal vitamins. Your prenatal vitamin can make you nauseous, so you may want to talk to your doctor about what’s best for you. For some women, they do better with chewable prenatal vitamins or liquid vitamins.

About the author: DP Nguyen is founder and editor of Hip Chick’s Guide to PMS, Pregnancy and Babies. She’s an expert pregnancy and women’s health blogger. She is NOT a medical doctor and does NOT offer medical advice. Connect with her on Google+, Twitter and Facebook.

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{ 8 comments… add one }

  • Vivian Navarro March 10, 2015, 1:55 pm

    I’m 39 and I’m trying to get pregnant . I’ve been trying for 2 years now ? Should I go see a professional ( mind you I already have 3 children)

  • kate March 2, 2015, 2:26 pm

    I am 35 years old and I was diagnosed with poor ovarian reserve and very bad prognosis of having a baby with my own eggs. I was even given the option to consider donor eggs. That was around july 2014. I was absolutely devastated with the news and I arranged an IVF for November 2014 and it failed also, given that I had nothing to lose, I contacted on facebook (Oduduwa Ajakaye) and he send me his herbal product,. Believe it or not… I am already pregnant!

  • SHEILA January 15, 2015, 7:35 am

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  • monica June 19, 2013, 6:38 am

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  • linda May 24, 2013, 3:03 pm

    My name is Linda am 27years old i have a baby girl who is 4 an a half. i had a ectopic pregnancy in 2008 and lost my right fallopian tube. I’m trying to get pregnant but its not working naturally. when i am on my periods i feel sad of my life ,im really disappointment. i have read so many things on how to get pregnant i did my exercise and i took my vitamins regularly but steel no good news until i saw some comments and testimonies on some ladies testifying how ashra has helped them got their baby by casting a pregnancy spell for them ,i dicided to copy the email addres of this great spell caster and i sent him an email and told him everything and that i lost my right tube if it was steel posible he replied my mail with such words of hope and immediately i felt peace and hope within me ,i did all he asked me to do and i he bought some items which he used to perform the pregnancy spell and immediately he told me to make love to my husband anytime i want which i did , i just came from the doctor now and it is confirm that am 5weeks pregnant am so happy and i cant wait to carry my baby and breast milk my own child once again ,as i write this now i have tears of joy runin down my chick,if any one out there is passing true similar situation my advice is dont wait and suffer anymore contact ashra spell temple on email :ashraspelltemple@gmail.com or his personal number +2348058176311.
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  • KN September 28, 2012, 10:56 am

    Thank you! I was skeptical about taking vitamins but now I am taking them. Thank you!

  • aja February 12, 2012, 12:56 am

    i enjoyed reading this! i was in doubt of taking my prenatals but this was encouraging! thanks!

  • Vitamin B12 December 19, 2011, 5:23 pm

    Can you get too much B12 in the diet during pregnancy? I know the minimum is 2.8 mcg, but the body doesn’t absorb it all. Is the usual 10 mcg in most vitamin pills enough?

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