Five questions to answer when choosing your prenatal multivitamin

Five questions to answer when choosing your prenatal multivitamin

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If you are planning a pregnancy or are already pregnant, complete this questionnaire. It will help you identify your nutritional needs and choose a prenatal supplement that suits your state of health and lifestyle.

In general, a medical consultation before you become pregnant is instrumental in ensuring that you have the nutritional reserves you need before conceiving and that you keep them throughout pregnancy and breastfeeding.


 
Planning on getting pregnant? If so, are you currently taking either a prenatal multivitamin or Folic Acid by itself?
You must answer to this question!
Because many women are unaware that they are pregnant before the end of their first month of pregnancy, it's important to start taking an adequate dose of folic acid three months before the pregnancy. Sufficient folic acid uptake in the first 28 days of pregnancy can significantly reduce the risk of neural tube malformation. Also make sure to start your pregnancy with an adequate uptake of iron, iodine, calcium, and vitamins B12 and D. Taking a prenatal multivitamin that gives you the necessary nutritional reserves may even prove useful when you're trying to become pregnant.
 
Do any of the following statements apply to your situation?

You must answer to this question!
If you answered yes to at least one of these statements, you may need a dose of folic acid higher than 1 mg during the first three months preceding conception, and for up to 10-12 weeks of pregnancy. Consult your physician.
 
Are you on a special diet (e.g. diabetic, gluten-free, vegetarian/vegan or other)?
You must answer to this question!
If you answered yes, remember that you have the same nutritional needs as a pregnant woman who is not on any particular diet. The absence of certain foods in your diet (e.g. meat, fish, dairy products and eggs) may limit the nutritional uptake you require for your health and for the development of the fetus. Adequate vitamin supplementation may prove useful when you're planning a pregnancy.
 
Do you eat animal or fish liver (e.g. cod liver oil or liver pâté) or a vitamin A supplement (or other multivitamin containing retinol)?
You must answer to this question!
Your vitamin A uptake must not exceed a maximum of 3000 µg of retinol activity equivalents (RAE) or 10,000 international units (IU). Higher intake may be harmful for your baby's development.
 
Have you already obtained information on following a healthy diet during pregnancy (including which foods to avoid or limit during pregnancy, and food safety)?
You must answer to this question!
The Health and Pregnancy site is a good source of general information. You'll also find a list of useful websites when you click on this link: http://www.healthandpregnancy.ca/pregnancy/52-your-pregnancy-useful-resources

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