Prenatal vitamins are nutritional supplements that usually contain a concentrated mix of minerals and vitamins that a woman’s body needs more of during pregnancy.
Ideally, a woman will take prenatal vitamins while trying to become pregnant, and while she is breastfeeding.
Some women take the individual prenatal nutrients as separate supplements, but it is often easier to take them in one multivitamin supplement.
If you’re pregnant now or want to get pregnant, you know using the best prenatal vitamins is a must. The hard part is figuring out exactly which prenatals will work best for you and your unique situation…
With hundreds of different brands out there in dozens of different forms such as tablets, pills, drinks, powders and gummies, how can you possibly know which one is right for you?
If that’s the issue you’re facing, you’re going to be glad you found this site! Our “prenatal team” continually tests, ranks, and reviews just about every prenatal vitamin product on the market today.
We’ll tell you which ones we like and which ones we’d avoid. We’ll tell you what’s in them, when to use them, any side effects we experienced, how easy they are to take and how much they cost per serving.
In a nutshell, we’ll tell you everything you need to know to find the best prenatal vitamins for your particular situation. So if you’re looking to get all the benefits that prenatals can provide, this list should point you in the right direction!
Taking specific prenatal vitamins may reduce the risk of complications, for both the mother and the developing fetus as well as help a mother go full term.
Taking folic acid before becoming pregnant and throughout pregnancy may help reduce the risk of neural tube defects. Folic acid is also known as folate or vitamin B-9.
Neural tubes are embryonic structures that eventually form the spine and brain of the fetus. Neural tube defects can cause serious spine and brain conditions, including spina bifida, a condition where parts of the backbone do not close properly.
Folic acid also helps a pregnant woman’s body make red blood cells, potentially reducing the risk of anemia. Anemia may cause pregnancy complications, such as:
- low birth weight
- premature birth
- infant anemia
Other vitamins and nutrients
Aside from folic acid, several other key nutrients can benefit pregnant and breastfeeding women and developing fetuses. These include:
Iron: Pregnant women need about twice the usual recommended amount of the mineral iron. Iron is another crucial component in red blood cells. Pregnant women who do not get enough iron may develop iron-deficiency anemia.
Zinc: Supports the immune system and helps the body make proteins, divide cells, and synthesize DNA for new cells.
Vitamin B-12: Helps the body make healthy red blood cells and neurons, which are the specialized cells found in the spinal cord and brain. B-12 also helps these cells to function properly.
Calcium and vitamin D: Work together to help develop fetal bones and teeth. Vitamin D is also crucial for healthy eye and skin development. Calcium may reduce the risk of preeclampsia, a leading cause of illness and death in pregnant women, and newborns.
Vitamin A: Helps cells grow and differentiate, contributing to the healthy development of vision and many vital organs.
Vitamin B-6: Plays a vital role in cognitive development, glucose metabolism, immune function, and blood formation. May also help reduce nausea during pregnancy.
Iodine: A trace element essential for the development of the central nervous system, brain, and skeletal system. Severe iodine deficiencies in pregnant women may slow fetal growth or cause neurodevelopmental defects, stillbirth, or miscarriage.
Our current choice for the best prenatal vitamin is Smarty Pants PrenatalComplete. After trying these out, there’s a lot to like! They taste really good, are easy to use and have a great ingredient lineup which includes Folate, Omega-3s, Vitamin K as well as many other important components.
UpSpring Prenatal+ Gummy is one of the better-tasting and higher-quality prenatal vitamins I’ve found. The combination of a gummy and a pill ensures that you get virtually all of the ingredients an expectant mother needs. These also taste really good and are easy to use. All-in-all this is one of the better prenatals you’ll find!
Nature’s Dynamics Prenatal Plus Gummy is one of the best prenatal vitamins on the market. I really like how this company uses plants and whole foods as sources for their vitamins. The ingredients are plant based, non-GMA and are made with fruits and vegetables. The gummies themselves are very easy to use. They taste delicious (not as sweet as some gummies), but they have a bit of a vitamin/plant tasting after taste.
Pink Stork Liquid Prenatal Vitamin has a lot going for it. It’s easy to take daily, is reasonably priced and most importantly, has most of the ingredients you want to see in a good prenatal vitamin. Overall this one is a very good choice, especially for those who don’t like taking pills or gummies.
Zahler Prenatal + DHA is one of the better prenatal vitamins out there. It’s got a lot of the ingredients you want to see in a prenatal and in the right amounts. They also offer a standard 30-day guarantee through Amazon. While the pills are a little large and I get a little nauseous when I first take them, overall this is a really good prenatal.
hese Garden of Life are very good prenatal vitamins in our opinion. They taste amazing, are easy to use and are reasonably priced compared to most other prenatals. The ingredients are pretty good, but I found it was lacking a few essential vitamins I look for in my prenatals. But overall, this is a very good choice among prenatal vitamins.
Thorne makes a pretty good prenatal vitamin overall. I really like the ingredients in this one– it has most of what expectant mothers will need. It’s also got a pretty good price point at 90 cents per serving. My only issues were a very large pill size and the lack of a guarantee.
Zenwise Health Prenatal Multivitamin isn’t a bad choice. It has the vast majority of ingredients you like to see in these type of supplements. The only real downside of the product we experienced was the large size of the tablets themselves. But other than that, this is pretty good prenatal.
As far as ingredients go, it checks off a lot of must-haves. It contains Folate, Zinc, Biotin, Iodine, and many other vitamins that are essential to both you and your baby’s health. The only thing I really didn’t care for are the softgels themselves. They’re pretty big and chunky and hard to get down. But that aside, this is a pretty good product.
This prenatal gummy has a lot of good things going for it. It’s easy to take, has most of the ingredients you want in a prenatal, and the taste isn’t too bad. Overall, it’s a solid choice.