Now that I have told you all about Baby Candy, I thought I’d do a few little reviews of the pre-natal vitamins I have taken over the last few months. Folic Acid is important during pregnancy and ideally conception too.
The Midwife told me that beyond 12 weeks it was pointless to take folic acid because the baby’s nervous system and spine would already be formed by then, however I have chosen to continue to take vitamins throughout.
I know of women who have pregnancy vitamins even if they are not pregnant because the vitamins give them really good skin and shiny hair! So it’s definitely something all women can consider if they want a boost!
The first ones I bought were…
Vitabiotics Pregnacare Plus (£14.99)
I went down to Boots to get these. The choice was so-so from what I remember so this seemed the most ‘all round’. There is a regular one that has just got the pink tablet that costs less an this ‘plus’ pack that has the Omega-3 tablet.
Vitabiotics Pregnacare Plus Omega 3 dual pack contains 28 x Pregnacare multi-nutrient tablets with 400?g Folic Acid and 28 x Omega-3 Marine Oil capsules with 300mg DHA.Pregnancy vitamins.
For me, these were ok although I do remember the pink tablet making me feel quite ill if I took it without enough having enough food beforehand. It does specify (as with all the tablets) to eat first I am guessing as the tablets are quite strong but it made me queasy a few times.
These can be taken for the full duration of the pregnancy and also for conception. I definitely wanted something with fish oils as I read this was good for the baby’s brain development, but there are some oils and ingredients to avoid so I preferred a specific pregnancy one.
Overall I thought these vitamins were ok – I didn’t really notice a huge improvement in my skin and hair and because they made me feel a bit off, I didn’t buy them again after a month was up. Full details here.
Note: If you are on a budget, Folic Acid itself is very cheap from Boots and also you can get it prescribed for free on the NHS.
Vitabiotics Pregnacare Multi-Nutrient Tablets with 400?g Folic Acid
Dibasic Calcium Phosphate, Microcrystalline Cellulose, Silicon Dioxide, Stearic Acid, Magnesium Stearate, Croscarmelose Sodium, Hydroxypropylmethylcellulose
Titanium Dioxide, Iron Oxide Red, Hydroxypropylmethylcellulose, Hydroxypropyl Cellulose
Omega-3 Marine Oil Capsules with 300mg DHA
Vitamin D (200 IU) 5 mcg; Vitamin E 20 mg; Vitamin C 70 mg; Vitamin B1 3 mg; Vitamin B2 2 mg; Niacin 20 mg; Vitamin B6 10 mg; Folic Acid 400 mcg; Vitamin B12 6 mcg; Betacarotene 2 mg; Vitamin K 70 mcg; Iron 17 mg; Selenium 30 mcg; Magnesium 150 mg; Zinc 15 mg; Iodine 140 mcg; Copper 1 mg, Omega 3 fish oil (providing 300mg Docosahexaenoic Acid and 60mg Eicosapentaenoic Acid)
Next I tried Sanatogen as there was a 3 for 2 at Boots. Once again this is a two tablet set up with a multivitamin and omega 3 fish oil.
These come in 2 separate tubs whereas the Pregnacare comes in blister packs.
I took these for a few months and I found them a lot easier to swallow then the Pregnacare although the Omega 3 tablets looked almost identical. You only have to take one of each tablet ONCE a day which is great, as it’s easy enough to remember.
I found these easy peasy to take and they didn’t make me feel sick, but I think the fish oil side of the Pregnacare may be better quality.
Sanatogen Mother to Be tablets contain:
Dicalcium phosphate, Magnesium oxide, Ascorbic acid (Vitamin C), Cellulose, Ferrous fumarate, Hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose, Nicotinamide (Niacin), DL-alpha-tocopheryl acetate (Vitamin E), Silicon dioxide, Calcium pantothenate (Pantothenic acid), Zinc oxide, Maltodextrin, Modified starch, Colours (Titanium dioxide, Iron oxides), Talc, Mannitol, Manganese sulphate, Pyridoxine hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Glycerol, Cross-linked sodium carboxy methyl cellulose, Magnesium stearate, Copper sulphate, Thiamine mononitrate (Thiamin), Sugar, Riboflavin, Starch, Acacia, Folic acid (Folacin), Triglycerides, Biotin, Cholecalciferol (Vitamin D), Vitamin B12, Antioxidant (Tocopherol).
Sanatogen Omega 3 fish oil capsules contain:
Fish oil prep. (fish oil, alpha-tocopherol, mixed tocopherol prep. (mixed tocopherol, sunflower oil)), Capsule Shell (Gelatin, Glycerol), Vitamin E.
Then I also tried…
DLux Pregnancy Vitamin Spray (£9.95) – I bought mine from this shop.
I bought these when we were moving house and life got very busy and I wasn’t remembering to take my normal vitamins. I carried this in my handbag (In fact I still have it and have the occasional spray) cos I figured some vitamins is better than none.
Each bottle has around 32 days supply if you use it 5 times a day (sprayed under the tongue). It has a sweet and minty taste which is fine. I did like this gimmicky little idea as it is so easy to use and if it’s in your handbag you can just pull it out sometimes and spray.
The only thing was, I am not convinced that this is the best ‘all rounder’ supplement, plus how much of it really gets into your bloodstream? I couldn’t be certain it was enough so as soon as things calmed down I went back to tablets.
Vitamin D3 is a fat soluble vitamin, so we have developed DLuxPregnancy to be oil-based (coconut oil as a medium chain triglyceride), so enhancing it’s absorption within the body. The oil is suspended in solution using sunflower lecithin ensuring a perfectly even distribution, from the first spray to the last.
By applying it directly into the mouth, ideally under the tongue, it is absorbed directly through the mucous membrane into the blood system rather than having to be processed by the digestive system and major organs. This ensures no loss during the absorption process. The solution has been microemulsified to ensure the particle size is optimal for absorption in this way.
Each dose (5 sprays) contains:
Vitamin D3: 1000iu/25ug
Folic Acid: 400ug
Vitamin B1: 1.4mg
Vitamin B6: 2mg
Xylitol, Purified Water, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (B6), Thiamine Monoitrate (B1), Cholecalciferol (D3), Folic Acid, Acacia Gum (natural stabiliser), Citric Acid, Preservative: Potassium Sorbate, Sunflower Lecithin (Tricalcium Phosphate, Rice Flour), Sodium Bicarbonate, Peppermint Oil.
Delivers 1000iu of vitamin D, 400ug of folic acid, 1.4mg of vitamin B1 and 2mg of vitamin B6 with every does (5 sprays).
Rich in vitamins D3, B1, B6 and essential Folic Acid this spray is convenient, easy to use and tastes great! Can be taken throughout the pregnancy and during breastfeeding.
Finally I have been taking Zita West Supplements for the last few months!
Zita West Vital DHA and Vital Essence 2 and 3 – note this is the official Zita West site but I always google around to find the best prices and can usually get one bottle for £20 as opposed to £25.
Zita West is some kind of goddess in fertility, conception and birth circles! She has a selection of books, and range of supplements:
I bought these because it was the ONLY range I could find which was tailored for different trimesters.
There’s the Vital Essence 1 for the First Trimester, Vital Essence 2 for the Second Trimester and Vital Essence 3 for the Third Trimester. Each one is tailored for your needs in each trimester which I think is a great idea – for example the Vital Essence 3 I am taking contains more Calcium for the baby’s growing body rather than Folic Acid, which is more useful in the first trimester!
(They say about Vital Essence 3: Most of a baby’s Calcium is deposited in this trimester as his or her bones and teeth harden. The foetus takes up Calcium at the rate of approximately 350mg a day during this stage of the pregnancy, so it is good to have a plentiful supply to prevent it being scavenged from your own skeleton. There’s plenty of Iron too, to help support your immune system and with the manufacture of red blood cells in preparation for the birth, as well as good levels of Vitamin D and Vitamin B3.)
The Vital DHA is a separate supplement you must pay for and comes in a blister pack. You get 1 months supply (as with all these vitamins) and you take it twice a day. They contains 450g DHS and 95 EPA per day and it is recommended as a companion to the Vital Essence tablets. This costs £14.50 or slightly less if you shop around.
What can I say about these supplements?!
There are SO many things I hate about them.
I hate that you have to take 3 of the Vital Essence tablets and 2 Vital DHA’s – that’s 5 a day, you need to have them with food, so you need to remember!
I hate the size of the tablets too – the Vital Essence are pretty chunky. Although the are smooth and should you struggle it won’t come apart in your mouth or taste foul, they are still on the large size and I’m someone who can take paracetemol without any water quite easily normally.
The packaging is big and bulky – the Vital Essence is in a glass jar which is really luxurious but annoying to take around – you almost definitely need to get a pill case to use this as you’ll probably want to take some to work.
I also hate the price!!! It’s expensive. I only discovered these during my second trimester, but if I had started on them early it would’ve been almost £40 a month on supplements alone.
Despite all of the negative above, these vitamins have had the biggest effect on how I feel in terms of just feeling better and my hair and skin look good too. They are also extremely high quality and offer a high concentration of vitamins and I love that they are tailored to what my body currently needs.
I had a blood test just 2 weeks ago and the midwife made a point of telling me how healthy my blood results were and how I was full or iron etc. and that I must be having a great diet! Yes, I do love fruit but I have also been pigging out so I put this down to these vitamins!
Ergo – if these expensive, clunky pills are the best for me and the best for baby then I will continue to take for them until the end of my pregnancy, then I’ll move on to their Revital Essence for 3 months which is for post-natal mums.
If you have had a baby, what vitamins did you take?
Would you take pregnancy vitamins even if you weren’t expecting?