If you are pregnant and looking for prenatal vitamins, you may be confused by the many prenatal vitamin products on the market . You buy a prenatal vitamins and try it. And, guess what ? Instead of getting the benefits of prenatal vitamins, you are actually experiencing morning sickness, nausea and vomiting, heart palpitations, you got allergy, and other things that you do not expect. Each product offers the same vitamins and minerals, but why the results differ? What is wrong?
If you do a little research, you might find other expectant mothers experiencing the same thing. But does not apply to other expectant mothers, they look healthy and fresh, energized, not experience nausea and vomiting, morning sickness become lighter, their children were born healthy. That’s what you want, right ? But you still did not get the best prenatal vitamins for your body?
You may find the claims of manufacturers that their products are safe and best.
Why you should trust them ? Because they claim to be the best based on reviews someone else made (or their own claim)?
Or should you rather try to take a different approach at this whole matter?
After a long search and many failures, I came to the point where I was bored with the offerings mediocrity of some prenatal vitamins. And yes, I came to the conclusion that a product can be very good for pregnant women and pregnant women are terrible for others women.
And, in my search for the best prenatal vitamins, after researching and reading many customer reviews, I narrowed it down to 3 products that offer the right quality, effectiveness and safety of the products according to the prices offered:
Table of Contents
Top 3 Best Prenatal Vitamins Review
Here are our brief reviews on the top 3 products:
1. Garden of Life Vitamin Code Raw Prenatal Multivitamins
If you are looking for a prenatal vitamin that has a complete vitamins and minerals, the Garden of Life Vitamin Code Raw Prenatal Multivitamins is the answer. This prenatal vitamins are rich in vitamins and minerals in an amount according to the IOM recommendations. Some content provided in excess amount, but not exceeding the upper tolerable limit.
This is a high quality supplement. This is a perfect prenatal vitamins when combined with DHA supplement
Unlike other prenatal vitamins, the manufacturers offers products that completely different with other prenatal vitamins. Taking this prenatal vitamins is just like you eat raw foods. When you eat raw foods (fruits, vegetables), all the nutrients are there and enzymes and probiotics are there also. When you cook your foods, high temperatures may destroy important nutrients, vitamin bioavailabity will be lost, then you eat nothing (or at least the vitamin content is reduced). While foods ares chemically processed, the contaminated the foods. Your foods may also lost its activity, important nutrient changed due chemical interaction among them.
What You Should Know About The Supplements
Unlike another prenatal vitamin, this product provide folate instead of folic acid. It is uncommon. Folate is natural form, extracted from food. However, chemical lability of folate folate results in a significant loss of biochemical activity during harvesting, storage, processing, and preparation. Half or three quarters of initial folate activity may be lost during the processes. Synthetic formed folic acid is more stable for months even years, while folate form rapidly loses activity in food over periods of days or weeks. This product contains 800 mcg of folate, since it is provided in folate form, it equals to 800 mcg DFE. IOM recommends to consume 600 mcg of DFE. Is it enough?? Yes, no doubt!! BUT!! Remember, folate form is not stable. Boiavailability of natural folate is lower than synthetic form. WHO/FAO joint report shows that natural folate only has 25-50% bioavailability, while folic acid has 85% (another report says 100% bioavailability). Thus, generally vitamin supplement contain folic acid, instead of natural folate form. WHO/FAO joint report also state that pregnant women estimated average requirements (EAR) of folate is about 520 mcg of folate. This product contains 800 mcg of folate, thus maximum folate can be absorbed is around 400 mcg, less that EAR 520 mcg of folate.
Generally, vitamin B12 is extracted from animals, such as meat, eggs, and dairy animals. This product is also designed for vegetarian. We’re just curious where does vitamin B12 come from. Several studies have reported levels of vitamin B12 in vegetables is very little, even it can be said that plant does not produce vitamin B12. This product contains algae, and that is the main source of vitamin B12. Vitamin B12 is provided as much as 6 mcg, while RDA is about 2.6 mcg. This number is enough.
This product offers a content of 5000 IU of vitamin A in the form of beta carotene (500 mcg of RAE per day), equivalent to 65 % DV. This amount is slight lower than IOM recommendations.
This product contains 1400 IU of vitamin D (in D3 cholecarciferol form), seven times higher than RDA. RDA of vitamin D for pregnant women is 200 IU and IOM gives upper tolerable limit of vitamin D as high as 4000 IU. Thus, this quantity is still safe for pregnant women. Vitamin D3 (cholecarciferol), generally, produced on our skin, and other animals skin and milk. This type of vitamins is not appropriate for those who are vegan.
Other Form of Vitamin B
The content of vitamin B1 ( Thiamine ), B2, B3, B5, B6 and biotin are given in acceptable level (safe) and adequate for pregnant women.
This product is only offered 10 % DV. So, you should really ensure adequate calcium from food or other calcium supplements. It is important to note, that the high calcium content in supplement interfere iron absorption. In order to achieve balanced absorption of calcium and iron, you need to manage the time to take this supplement, give pause about 2 hours before / after taking a calcium supplement.
Iron content of this product is 18 mg. RDA for pregnant women is about 27 mg. Thus, to meet the dairy needs of iron, pregnant women should also consume vegetables (if you’re vegan) or meats that have high iron levels or other iron supplement.
This product contains organic fruits and vegetable blends, digestive comfort blend (contains 78 mg of ginger), mineral enzyme activator (this enzyme seems also used to extract vitamin B12 from algae). This prenatal vitamin contains ginger. There is a long debate out there regarding the use of ginger for pregnant women. Ginger seems to reduce nausea and vomiting in some pregnant women. However, there are concerns regarding the use of ginger in pregnant women. You may get heartburn and acid in your throat (reflux) from taking ginger capsules. If you read the product reviews on Amazon.com, some pregnant women complain of this condition and they stop taking this vitamin. But these symptoms are common in pregnancy anyway. They may be due to the baby pressing on your stomach and not due to the ginger. Some studies say that there is no evidence of adverse effects of ginger. Some studies say that the consumption of 1 gram of ginger per day should be quite safe for mother and baby.
In outline, here are some advantages of this product:
- provide raw vitamins which is uncooked, untreated and unadulterated
- folate daily intake is given in form of natural folate, not synthetic folic acid
- provides complete nutrients that required by pregnant women, the amount of each nutrient is provided on safe level
- prenatal digestive support, it seems many customer is really helped
2. Deva Vegan Vitamins Prenatal Multivitamins
Deva Vegan Vitamins Prenatal Multivitamins is a multivitamin that is specially formulated to meet the nutritional needs of vegans and are also suitable for all pregnant women. If you are vegan, certainly enough to understand the importance of some vitamins such as vitamin B12 and vitamin D. Most vegans consume enough B12 to avoid anaemia and nervous system damage, but many do not get enough to minimise potential risk of heart disease or pregnancy complications. Vitamin B12 is easily found in milk, meat and eggs of animals. Surely this is not an option for vegans. Pad the prenatal vitamins, vitamin B12 is derived from algae.
Vitamin D will help to control the movement of calcium between bone and blood, and vice versa. In infancy and childhood, deficiency of vitamin D causes the deformed bones characteristic of rickets. Vitamin D has two forms, D2 (ergocalciferol) and D3 (cholecalciferol). Foods with naturally occurring vitamin D usually contain a animal derived vitamin D3. That you need to consider is, be aware that vegetarian formulations can contain a non-vegan vitamin D (in the form of D3). Deva Vegan Vitamins Prenatal Multivitamins provide vitamin D in the form of D2.
What You Should Know About The Supplements
This product contains 550 mcg of folic acid (equivalent to 330 mcg of DFE). In accordance with the recommendations of the IOM, pregnant women are advised to consume 600 mcg of DFE ( Dietary folate equivalents). Based on the IOM , this product offers only by 55 % DV of DFE, lower than they claimed, amounted to 138 %.
Vitamin B12The main sources of vitamin B12 are from animals, such as meat, eggs, and dairy animals. Meanwhile, several studies have reported levels of vitamin B12 in vegetables is very little. Because plants do not synthesize vitamin B12, people vegeratian ( who do not consume meat products ) are at risk of vitamin B12 deficiency. Thus , prenatal multivitamin with high content of vitamin B12 is the answer. These products offers 100 mcg of vitamin B12, equivalent with 3846 % DV. This is very high. Is it safe ? Research conducted by the WHO / FAO found no adverse effects when people consumes 1000 mcg of vitamim B12 ( 10 times higher than offered by this product ).
Vitamin A is a type of vitamin that is soluble in fat. Because of their solubility, vitamin A can be stored in the liver. Daily regular consumption in large quantities can cause symptoms of toxicity, including liver damage, bone and joint abnormalities, headache, vomiting, loss of appetite and skin irritation. This product offers a content of 3750 IU of vitamin A in the form of beta carotene (375 mcg of RAE per day), equivalent to 49 % DV. IOM provides UL ( tolerable upper limit intakes ) by 2800 mcg RAE per day for pregnant women aged less than 18 years, and 3000 mcg RAE per day for pregnant women who are older. Vitamin is provided in beta-carotene forms (preformed vitamin A) which is safer than vitamin A (retinol form) it self.
Vitamin D in this product are supplied in the form of vitamin D2 ( ergocalciferol ). Vitamin D2 is derived from plant. However, the effectiveness of pro-vitamin D2 is not better than provitamin D3. Provitamin D needed by pregnant women is 200 IU, and this product offers 400 IU.
Other Form of Vitamin B
The content of vitamin B1 ( Thiamine ), B2, B5, B6 and biotin are given in excessive amounts . Excessive content of Thiamine ( B1 ), Riboflavin ( B2 ), B5 ( Panthotenate acid) and biotin will not causes any effect or causes toxicity. Beware, this product contains higher vitamin B3 ( niacin ) that exceeds UL (tollerable upper limit) of IOM recommendation. IOM recommends that pregnant women shall not consume niacin more than at 35 mcg / day due toxicity effect. This product offer 40 mcg/day.
This product is only offered 10 % DV. So, you should really ensure adequate calcium from food or other calcium supplements. It is important to note , that the high calcium content in supplement interfere iron absorption. In order to achieve balanced absorption of calcium and iron, you need to manage the time to take this supplement, give pause about 2 hours before / after taking a calcium supplement.
Iron content of this product is relatively high, but it is still below the IOM recommendations. To meet the dairy needs of iron, pregnant women should also consume vegetables that have high iron levels or other iron supplement.
In outline, here are some advantages of this product
- specially formulated for vegan
- Certified by Vegan Society
- provides complete nutrients that required by pregnant women, the amount of each nutrient is provided on safe level, unless Niacin
- serving size 1 tablet
3. Rainbow Light Prenatal Organic Multivitamin
The products of Rainbow Light is already well known, and you may encounter in the Amazon. However, you may want to know more about these products before making a purchase.
Great prenatal vitamins, hight quality and cheap price. I love this product
- Is this product safe ? ? What are the side effects?
- Is enough nutrients in these products for my health and my fetus?
- What do other customers regarding this product?
- Is this product really is best for me?
- If so , whether the product is better than other products?
What You Should Know About The Supplements
This product is able to meet the daily needs of folate for pregnant women. In accordance with the recommendation of the IOM, this product contains 1000 mcg of folic acid, equivalent to 600 mcg DFE. So, you no longer need to worry about folate deficiency in your body during pregnancy.
This product contains 2500 IU of preformed vitamin A in the form of beta-carotene. This content is equivalent to 250 mcg of retinol activity Equivalency (RAE). As known, the effect of the toxin beta-carotene is lower than retinol, beta-carotene that is safer than retionol. The content of vitamin A in the product is only able to meet the needs of 32%. So, do not forget to consume fruits are rich in vitamin A.
Vitamin D in this product are supplied in the form of vitamin D3 (cholecarciferol). The effectiveness of the pro-vitamin D3 is better than D2 provitamin. Provitamin D needed by pregnant women is 200 IU, and this product offers 800 IU, four times the recommended amount for pregnant women. The content is still quite safe. IOM upper tolerable limit of vitamin D is 4000 IU.
Other Form of Vitamin B
The content of vitamin B1 (Thiamine), B2, B5, B6, B12 and Biotin are given in excessive amounts. But do not worry, excessive content of Thiamine (B1), Riboflavin (B2), B5 (Panthotenate acid) and biotin will not causes any effect or causes toxicity. This product also contains vitamin B3 (niacin) of 30 mg. This amount is more than IOM recommendation, at 18 mg. But the content is still relatively safe. IOM limits maximum consumption of 35 mcg / day for pregnant women. Your age during pregnancy may be less than 18 years, please check the IOM recommendations.
This product does not contain calcium. So, you have to make ends meet through food or supplement clacium calcium.
Iron content of this product is relatively high, amounting to 18 mg. This amount is lower than the IOM recommendations by 27 mg. To meet the daily needs of iron, pregnant women should also consume foods that have high levels of iron or other iron supplements.
This product also contains 60 mg of Vitamin C, lower than the IOM recommendations. Make sure you also consume fruits that contain vitamin C. Vitamin C also plays a role in iron absorption.
This product contains digestive enzymes, such as amylase, lipase, protease which will help digestion. Other ingredients are antioxidant, digestive support, strength and energy support. This product is really designed to help pregnant women digestion and provide energy for them. This is one of the advantages of this product.
Special Concern Ingredients ~ American Ginseng
When you check amazon.com’s product page and you read product description, it is clearly stated that this product contains American ginseng. We check product’s website, and find American ginseng has been removed from ingredients list. Although ginseng have been excluded from the ingredient list, keep careful in buying these products.
After analyzing the content of vitamins and elements that exist in this product, and read customer reviews, we can conclude that this product really works and beneficial for pregnant women.
- This product is designed for expectant mothers digestive comfort
- Vitamins and minerals are given in sufficient quantities and safe quantity.
- Customer feel the real difference when taking these vitamins, they are really energetic when taking this vitamin
How To Find The Best Prenatal Vitamins
When you decide to buy prenatal vitamins, there are several steps that you should do before deciding fatherly purchase.
- The first thing you need to do is determine your vitamin needs. You can find references of the IOM or the FAO and find recommended daily allowance for pregnant women.
- The second thing is to recognize what vitamins you consume every day. The more vitamins you get from food means less and less prenatal vitamins should you consume. As well as for vegetarians, it will be easier for them to buy and eat vegetables rather than having to seek prenatal vitamins are suitable for vegetarians. However, a few things to keep in mind is that not all vitamins available in food, or food you consume may contains less vitamins and minerals.
- Last thing is to find best prenatal vitamins.
Finding best prenatal vitamin is not easy. Because all products offer the same thing, vitamins and minerals. Even so, not all prenatal vitamins can give you what you need exactly. In fact, some manufacturers may add harmful ingredients, such as artificial color, gluten, yeast, american ginseng and some materials are not permitted consumed by pregnant women. Some manufacturers may also provide vitamins / minerals given in excessive amounts and beyond the tolerable upper limit for pregnant women. If you are not careful, prenatal vitamins can make you get morning sickness, constipation, nausea, etc. Here are some of the criteria that we use to find the best prenatal vitamins.
- Ingredients/supplement facts. Remember the steps we wrote above, prenatal vitamins should meet your daily needs. If you are unsure of your daily needs, you can use the U.S. recommended daily allowance as a reference. Recognize upper limit tolerable limit (UL) for each of the vitamins and minerals. The best prenatal vitamin supplement should not exceed the upper tolerable limits to be consumed by pregnant women. Specific ingredients which should be avoided is also important.
- Amount of serving per day. For pregnant women who do not like taking supplements, especially in the form of pills, capsules, caplets, consumes a certain amount of supplements will be a problem. Instead of benefiting from the best prenatal vitamins, you may be vomiting, food and prenatal vitamins you are taking to be in vain. If you are the type who do not like / can consume supplements (in the form of pills, capsules, etc), choose a prenatal vitamin that offers less serving. There are many prenatal vitamins that offer one-a-day serving. While other mothers who may not have a problem at the time of taking a number of pills in a day.
- Prices. Moneywise, people growing niche to look for the cheapest product on the market. However, this should not be the case. you may be aware, buying a product best prenatal vitamins as well as you make an investment you and your baby’s health. Very reasonable if not just want low prices, compared with the benefits you get, which may not be in a short time. You may only be realized after your baby is born healthy, active and you feel healthier. So, keep wise in buying.
- Additional ingredients. Some manufacturers will add some ingredients that aim for digestive support or energy booster . This factor is an advantage, although we still have to read the customer reviews to check the effectiveness of these additional ingredients.
- Prenatal vitamins benefits and effectiveness. Although many of you are taking the same prenatal vitamins , everyone can get different results. This may occur depending on the absorption ability of each pregnant woman’s body. However, we include these factors in the criteria to see the benefits that have been perceived by the customer. Analyzing these factors is a bit time consuming, because we have to read customer reviews.
- Customer rating, you can find this number on Amazon.com. Customer rating is an important part of the product review that we did. We simply want to know the benefits that are already being felt by another customer. Customer who give a 5 stars rating and 4 stars rating generally indicate their satisfaction. Some people might give a critical review, but still give 5 stars or 4 stars rating. Some also may be lowered its rating to 3 stars. Customer rating 1 star, 2 stars and 3 stars are also important to us. Because they usually arises critical review after taking the prenatal vitamin.
Here are some points that could make the customer gives 1 star, 2 stars and 3 stars rating
- customer objected to the amount of the serving per day
- customers do not like the size of the pill / capsule, and they are difficult to consume
- customer does not like the taste and smell. Smell and taste for a particular customer can be a problem, but other customers who can handle the smell and taste keep providing a 4 stars or 5 stars rating
- customer complained of a certain ingredient that should not be consumed by pregnant women, or consumed by vegetarians. If you are a vegetarian, then you should consider it.
- customer complained of experiencing excessive anxiety, stomach feeling uncomfortable, or feel the side effects like sensitive skin, a faster heart rate. Critical review of this kind need to make note of, what actually happens, is there a specific cause. Consider and compare if you have the same symptoms.
My personal vote goes to Garden of Life Vitamin Code Raw Prenatal Multivitamins, as it showed a complete nutrients as IOM recommended daily intakes and only minor disadvantages. Furthermore, when 90% of 251 people gave 4 stars and 5 stars rating, you cannot simply ignore the fact that it is actually good. Benefits and effectiveness + lots of excellent customer reviews have convinced me that this prenatal vitamin is really the best one out there!
If you are vegan, the most recommended product is Deva Vegan Vitamins Prenatal Multivitamins. Although this prenatal vitamins contains slight higher amount of niacin, but we can not ignore that this prenatal vitamins is certified by Vegan Society.