You may think postnatal vitamins aren’t as important as prenatal multivitamins. It’s a wrong idea. Mothers need continued support especially when it comes to nutrients, and taking supplements can help them achieve a body and mind fit to take care of a baby. To streamline the options, here are seven types of vitamins and minerals women can consider.
Postnatal Vitamins | 7 Supplements That Can Help Moms
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One of the important postnatal vitamins for mothers is iron. After vaginal or caesarean birth, women sometimes continue bleeding for a prolonged period. It may cause anemia. The rigors of new motherhood also leave many women feeling run down.
Your doctor may suggest taking iron for at least 10 days after delivery. That’s the amount of time it takes for the red blood cells to renew themselves. The dosage may depend on how arduous your pregnancy and delivery were. Be warned that extra iron can cause constipation. Drinking extra water and eating good sources of fiber-rich foods can counteract the side effect.
Whether nursing moms need more calcium is a hot topic. Some people believe increasing calcium intake can also boost breast milk production. The consensus among clinicians is your daily recommended intake will be no different from that of non-lactating women of your age.
Either way, mothers can benefit from calcium regardless they’re breastfeeding or not. Pregnancy drains calcium from your body. Lactating women may experience poor calcium absorption due to the changes in their estrogen levels. Calcium, as one of the postnatal vitamins, can prevent further bone density loss or compensate what you’ve lost.
The recommendation is calcium supplements up to 1,000 mg. It’s possible to take more as long as it is not beyond 2,500 mg. It’s always best to verify the best amount to take with your obstetrician.
3. Vitamin D
The need for this vitamin goes hand in hand with calcium. Vitamin D helps boost your body’s ability to absorb calcium. Is your postnatal period happening during winter? Vitamin D supplements are even more important. Our intake of this vital nutrient drops when we can’t get it from sunlight. Taking 800 international units of Vitamin D per day will help your body absorb calcium.
4. Omega 3
If you’re nursing, omega-3 fatty acids are important postnatal vitamins to consider. This nutrient passes to the baby through breast milk. The fatty acids help your baby’s growth. They play a significant role in the development of the brain and vision. Taking Omega-3 continues to aid your baby’s development beyond the newborn period. The supplement supports healthy child development for as long as you nurse.
Moreover, the supplement reduces your risk of postnatal depression. It can help regulate hormones fluctuations, which can result in mood changes.
5. Folic Acid
— Jean-Gillis Tchabo (@Tchabo_OBGYN) April 5, 2018
One of the recommended supplements for pregnant women is folic acid. Also known as vitamin B9, it’s key to healthy fetal development. But, its benefit extends after delivery. It’s one of the important postnatal vitamins for breastfeeding. It also promotes a good nervous system development for the baby. Like omega-3 supplements, folic acid may also prevent or reduce postpartum depression.
In Western countries, folic acid is difficult to get from food, so supplementation is often necessary.
Zinc supplements help new moms who are feeling run down. During pregnancy, your body doesn’t absorb zinc as well as it normally does. Zinc, though, is important because it helps boost immunity and vitality.
Adding it to your postnatal vitamins routine can reverse that tired feeling. You’ll have more energy to combat the sleep deprivation most new mothers face. Zinc also helps fight off colds and other illnesses. It’s also beneficial as one of the postnatal vitamins for breastfeeding. It may prevent babies from becoming colicky.
7. Vitamin A
Babies need vitamin A for many aspects of growth. It’s fortunate your body delivers the vitamin you get from food to your nursing baby. But because less vitamin stays in your system, you may feel the effects of vitamin A deficiency. To protect your eyes, teeth, and skin, consider adding it to your vitamin routine.
Remembering taking your postnatal vitamins can be tough. With this video from Get Simplifized, you can make it easier:
What you need as postnatal vitamins depend on many factors. These include your doctor’s recommendations. In some cases, nutrition is enough, but getting a balanced diet at this point is challenging. You may already have vitamin deficiencies or anemia during pregnancy and delivery. The hectic nature of caring for an infant also comes into play. Postnatal vitamins provide the vital nutrients for both you and your baby.
What are your postnatal vitamins? Give us some ideas in the comments below.