Research has shown that certain nutrients, like folic acid and iron, are essential for a healthy pregnancy and can reduce the chance of birth defects. Prenatal vitamins including these key nutrients are recommended for women who are pregnant, for woman who are planning to become pregnant, and for women who are breastfeeding.
During pregnancy, it’s important time to get the proper spectrum of vitamins and minerals – your body needs more of certain nutrients to support fetal development. Taking prenatal vitamins can help ensure that you get sufficient nutrients when your diet isn’t keeping up with your changing nutritional needs and meaningfully impact the health of your baby.
Vitamin D is essential for general health and for strong bones. Deficiency is rare, but has serious health consequences, like rickets.
A 2011 study showed that over 70% of Americans get less than the daily recommended amount of vitamin D. If you don’t get a lot of sun – which helps your body produce vitamin D – or if your diet is low in foods that contain it, you may be among them. Foods that contain vitamin D are fatty fish, beef liver, and fortified milk and cereal.