Prenatal vitamins can give you energy while pregnant. Pregnant women need more iron and B vitamins than the average female, so it’s important to get that from your prenatal vitamin, as a pregnant woman, you may be wondering if prenatal vitamins give you energy. the truth is that most women actually notice a boost in energy and stamina after taking their vitamins. this is because your body converts the food you eat into energy more effectively with prenatal vitamins.
While I was pregnant, I took prenatal vitamins to make sure I was getting all of the nutrients my body and baby needed. I figured this would be a good way to start off my pregnancy. While taking prenatal vitamins during my pregnancy, I did not notice any difference in my energy levels.
Many women find prenatal vitamins hard to stomach, and I often have patients ask me if they have to take them. The short answer is, it depends.
The necessity of taking prenatal vitamins depends on your nutritional status at the beginning of pregnancy. Are you well nourished, malnourished or obese? In the U.S., if you are eating a normal healthy diet, vitamin and mineral supplements are probably not required. When there is a problem with inadequate sources of vitamins or minerals, the first solution is a healthy diet.
If you are planning to become pregnant, it is a great idea to schedule a pre-pregnancy visit with your obstetrician who will make sure that you are up to date with all vaccinations and check your blood count and iron level. If you meet certain criteria, it may also be advisable to check your glucose levels and your levels of vitamin D. By meeting with your doctor prior to conception, you will know your nutritional status and can start to make any necessary dietary adjustments to prepare for pregnancy.
Once you become pregnant, a prenatal vitamin can be a very important part of your healthcare routine. The two most important ingredients of the prenatal vitamin are folic acid and iron. Below I will explain what each of these vitamins is, why it’s important, and the suggested daily intake for expecting mothers.
Some physicians advocate for preconception folate supplementation as a way to reduce birth defects and improve pregnancy outcome. Women who are planning to become pregnant should consider taking a multi-vitamin with at least 400 µg of folic acid daily for at least a month prior to conception. There are certain instances, such as a prior pregnancy with spina bifida, where 4000 µg (or 4 mg daily) is advised.
Since we know that nausea is very common in the first three months of pregnancy, make sure that your body is well supplied with both macro- and micronutrients prior to conception. This will help you to weather any temporary reductions in your food supplies.
Studies have shown that women who take a prenatal vitamin prior to conception have less nausea during pregnancy. If you are unable to take your prenatal vitamin in the first trimester due to nausea, your obstetrician may recommend that you switch to a folic acid supplement until your nausea improves.
Since you are building the blood volume of the fetus, you will need to provide about 1000 mg of iron to the fetal-placental unit over the 40 weeks of pregnancy. Much of this can be achieved with the correct diet, however, taking 30 mg of iron daily can be of great assistance.
For some people, iron causes significant GI issues such as nausea or constipation. If your blood count is low, I would encourage you to take the additional iron, drink plenty of fluids and use stool softeners to help decrease unwanted side effects. Some prenatal vitamins don’t contain iron, and you can take one of these until your nausea improves.
Other Crucial Vitamins
In addition to the folic acid and iron, it takes about 30 grams of calcium to build the fetal skeleton and most of this growth occurs during the last 10 weeks. Your diet and prenatal vitamin will certainly provide adequate reserves. Most women do get heartburn during their pregnancy. It is perfectly okay to use Tums or Rolaids and these antacids are loaded with calcium.
Prenatal vitamins are good for you and your baby, but sometimes they might make you feel exhausted. It has to do with the folic acid present in the prenatal vitamins. That’s right (folic acid helps prevent birth defects), but it can lead to having a crash around 3 p.m. or 4 p.m., which is why many moms-to-be take an extra dose of energy-boosting snacks in their bag or purse to make it through those afternoon work meetings! No, but they do have other benefits. Prenatal vitamins are a great way to ensure you’re getting the full spectrum of vitamins and minerals your body needs for proper development during pregnancy, and energy isn’t on the list.
Can You Take Energy Vitamins While Pregnant
Yes, you can take energy vitamins while pregnant. However, you need to follow your doctor’s advice and use a pill that has no side effects on the baby. You also need to consult with your doctor about the amount of vitamin intake for your body. Energy vitamins are designed to boost your energy and support your body during pregnancy. If you take them while pregnant, they can help increase your energy levels during the day so you can focus on taking care of your new baby.
If you are pregnant, or planning a pregnancy, you need to be careful about taking vitamins or any other type of supplements. Some can do more harm than good, so it’s always best to check with your doctor before taking supplements.
What are vitamins and supplements?
Vitamins are organic compounds needed in small amounts that your body can’t make for itself. Apart from vitamin D, which your skin makes from sunlight, most of the vitamins you need come from food.
Dietary supplements are complementary medicines which contain nutrients that may fill a deficiency (a gap) in your diet. Examples include multivitamins, single minerals, fish oil capsules and herbal supplements.
Essential vitamins and minerals in pregnancy
Good nutrition in pregnancy is vital for the healthy growth and development of your baby. You need to consume enough nutrients to meet your baby’s needs, as well as your own.
- folate (called ‘folic acid’ when in supplement form) helps prevent neural tube defects, such as spina bifida when taken at least 1 month before conception and throughout the first 3 months of pregnancy
- iodine is needed for brain and nervous system development
- iron helps prevent anaemia in the mother, as well as low birth weight in the baby
Vitamin B12 and vitamin D are also particularly important since they support the development of the baby’s nervous system (B12) and skeleton (D). Adequate vitamin C intake also helps improve the adsorption of iron from your diet.
Do I need to take supplements?
It’s recommended that all pregnant women in Australia take folic acid, iodine and vitamin D supplements.
Having a healthy diet is important and should provide you with the other nutrients you need. Check the Australian Dietary Guidelines for more advice. However, some pregnant women may need supplements of other nutrients besides folic acid, iodine and vitamin D.
If you have a known deficiency, your doctor might advise you to take a supplement. For example:
- if you are vegetarian or vegan and not getting enough vitamin B12
- if you don’t get enough calcium, which is vital for bone health, from dairy or other calcium-rich foods
- if you are low in iron
- if you may be low in omega-3 fatty acids, e.g. if you eat very little seafood
If you’re not sure whether you need a supplement, talk to your doctor.
Multivitamins in pregnancy
A multivitamin is a combination of different vitamins and minerals, usually taken as a tablet. Some multivitamins are designed especially for pregnant women (prenatal multivitamins). But they are not a substitute for a nutritious diet. It’s important to eat healthily even if you’re taking prenatal multivitamins.
If you’re pregnant, avoid taking multivitamins that are not designed for pregnancy.
Take care with certain vitamins
Your body only needs a small amount of each nutrient, and higher amounts are not necessarily better. In fact, consuming more than you need can sometimes cause harm.
It’s also best to avoid foods that may be very high in vitamin A, including liver and liver products such as pâté.
Just as you need to check with your doctor before you take any medicines while pregnant, it’s best to talk to your doctor before taking any supplements.
Other supplements in pregnancy
Other than folic acid, vitamin D and iodine and any supplement prescribed for you by your doctor, there is limited evidence to support the use of supplements during pregnancy.
Emerging research has shown that omega-3 supplements during pregnancy might help reduce the risk of premature birth, and that probiotics might help control blood glucose levels in pregnancy. But it’s not clear whether the benefits of taking these supplements outweigh any possible harms. Until there is better evidence available, it’s best to avoid them unless prescribed by your doctor — particularly in the first trimester of pregnancy.
Because nutritional supplements are classed as ‘complementary medicines’, they are not scrutinised or regulated as much as other medicines.
Vitamins and minerals are essential to good health. Getting your daily vitamin requirements from foods can be hard when you’re pregnant, so supplements may be a good idea. Ask your doctor about the best vitamin for pregnant women before taking any kind of supplement. It’s generally recommended that pregnant women get at least 200 milligrams of folic acid every day. Studies suggest that folic acid can help prevent birth defects of the spine and brain, which are common in people with spinal muscular atrophy. However, there is no evidence that high doses or megadoses of folic acid are beneficial for pregnant women.
Can You Take Energy Supplements While Pregnant
Yes, you can take energy supplements while pregnant. However, not all supplements are safe to take during pregnancy. The FDA has stated that if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding a baby, there is no data proving that caffeine is harmful to your unborn baby. However, consuming too much caffeine can lead to the baby having sleep problems and may cause miscarriage
Energy levels in pregnancy can be extremely variable from person to person. During pregnancy, hormone levels can play a part in how energised or tired we feel, depending upon our responses to them as an individual. When tiredness strikes during pregnancy, it can often be quite dramatic and you may go from being quite active during your everyday life to needing to rest and sleep much more than usual.
Fortunately, for most people, this feeling usually disappears as you move into the second trimester, at around 14-16 weeks of pregnancy. Once feelings of sickness and nausea begin to diminish, you will hopefully begin to feel more energised.
Having more energy can be achieved by increasing physical activity levels. Doing this also has several other potential benefits during your pregnancy:
- Being more active can help to control weight gain.
- Exercising regularly reduces the likelihood of developing gestational diabetes and can also help to control blood sugar levels, combined with a healthy diet, if you have been diagnosed with gestational diabetes.
- Can help with abdominal core strength to improve help to combat back ache and pelvic pain.
- Exercise and being more active has been shown to improve mental health.
How can I increase my energy levels during pregnancy?
- Eating healthily often isn’t easy during pregnancy if you’re not feeling on top form, you are suffering from nausea or you are just feeling generally tired. However, a more nutritious diet can improve energy levels.
Try to plan meals ahead so they are easy to cook or are prepared for the week ahead. When you are feeling tired, it will make it easier to reach for these instead of unhealthier snacks.
- Whilst processed foods and sugar will provide you with a short-lived energy boost, try to introduce more complex carbohydrate sources into your diet. These are found within whole grain foods such as brown rice, wholemeal pasta and vegetables such as sweet potatoes, for example. These foods help your energy levels stay higher for longer, avoiding ‘sugar crashes’ and sweet cravings.
- Build exercise into your daily or weekly routines. Try to set yourself goals to walk part of the way to work or go swimming twice a week. Involving a regular exercise partner can help with motivation, whether it’s a family member, friend or work colleague.
- Try a pregnancy specific exercise class such as yoga, pilates or swimming. These are usually gentle classes and can help you build and keep the fitness levels you need for pregnancy and birth. For example, those types of exercises will help with your core body strength, which is needed more when you reach the end of pregnancy and for labour, birth and postnatal recovery. These classes are also an excellent opportunity to develop friendships with other pregnant women.
- Get outside and into nature. Studies have shown that regularly being around trees, woodlands and nature not only boost energy levels but also have positive benefits to mental health and wellbeing.
When should I be worried about low energy levels?
- Feeling tired all the time may be the sign of a medical problem, so don’t always presume it is pregnancy related. Also, if you are still feeling as tired during your second trimester as you did during your first, discuss this with your midwife or GP.
- It can be quite common to develop anaemia (low iron levels) during pregnancy. To avoid this, include plenty of iron boosting foods into your diet and accompany these with foods rich in vitamin C, which helps iron absorption. Also, try to avoid caffeinated drinks around mealtimes, as caffeine inhibits the absorption of iron. Most pregnancy multivitamin supplements contain some form of iron, which can help prevent you from becoming anaemic.
You will be offered regular blood testing for this during pregnancy.
How to exercise safely in pregnancy
- If you have any unusual symptoms, such as abdominal cramps, or you feel sick or dizzy whilst exercising, it would be wise to stop and consult your doctor or midwife.
- Extreme exercise is not recommended. The aim to increase your heart rate, not to be so out of breath you can’t speak.
- It is fine to continue with most sports if you don’t feel as though you are becoming unsafe. For example, as you become more heavily pregnant your balance could change, therefore cycling or horse riding could become more dangerous.
Energy levels may feel depleted at times during your pregnancy and it can be difficult to be motivated as your bump grows. Taking care of your physical and emotional needs can help to boost energy levels and short periods of gentle exercise can help elevate your mood as well as prepare your body for the later stages of pregnancy, labour and the postnatal period.
Energy supplements are a great way to increase your energy when you feel exhausted. However, there are some important things you should know before taking them. There is no clear answer to how pregnant women will react to energy supplements, since it’s a relatively new phenomenon. Yes, you can take energy supplements while pregnant. Many women use them for an extra boost of energy that comes with pregnancy and the demands of taking care of other children in their household. It’s important to read the ingredients on any supplement bottle before you take it just to make sure it’s safe for you and baby.
The answers to this question vary from person to person. The first thing that you should do is check with your doctor about any medications your are taking and see if it is safe for you to take an energy supplement during pregnancy.