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Vitamin Guidelines

You should be taking a multivitamin from the time you consider getting pregnant until you stop nursing. Folic acid, a B vitamin, is especially important as it prevents defects of the brain and spinal cord, which are developing in the fetus during the first weeks of pregnancy.

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Q. What kind of vitamins should I take?
A. Most multivitamins contain folic acid, as well as vitamins A, B6, B12, C, D, E, calcium, iodine, iron, magnesium, phosphorus and zinc.

Q. How much folic acid should I take?
A. A multivitamin with 400-800 mdgs of folic acid is sufficient. It is recommended that you do not take more than 1000 mcgs of synthetic folic acid.

Q. What foods are rich in nutrients and vitamins?
A. Foods rich in folic acid include beans, green leafy vegetables and orange juice. Other foods high in folate are broccoli, lentils, black beans, peanuts, spinach, asparagus, romaine lettuce and ernriched pasta.

Q. How do I know if I’m getting enough calcium?
A. You need calcium not just for your bones, but for your baby’s bones, too. The recommended amount is 1000 mgs a day. An average diet contains 700 mgs. Increase your calcium intake in your diet – milk, yogurt and other dairy products – or take a calcium supplement.

Q. I have morning sickness. When’s the best time for me to take vitamins?
A. Taking a prenatal vitamin with iron may upset your stomach. Instead take a vitamin with folic acid and take it at night rather than in the morning.

Q. Do I need a prescription for prenatal vitamins?
A. Vitamins can be purchased at a pharmacy or supermarket without a prescription.