There are so many different brands of prenatal vitamins now they take up half an aisle at Target. You have prenatal gummy vitamins, regular pill form vitamins, and now you can also get prenatal drinks, powder drink mixes, and prenatal vitamin snacks. They also range in cost. Does the difference in the kind of prenatal vitamin form or price really matter? Yes and no. If you have a hard time swallowing pills then a drink or a squeeze pouch snack will work for you, but not all of them offer all of the nutrients you should be receiving in a prenatal vitamin. So, when should you start taking a prenatal vitamin, what should you look for in one, and what are your options?
Start taking your prenatal vitamin early: There is nothing wrong with taking a prenatal vitamin years before you even plan on getting pregnant. In reality it is just a multi-vitamin. It just has more vitamins and minerals to assist with a pregnancy. I personally started taking a prenatal vitamin a year before my husband and I started trying to conceive our first child, and I have continued to take one every day since.
Ingredients: I always recommend discussing with your doctor what you should be looking for in a prenatal vitamin. When I wanted to start taking a prenatal vitamin I spoke with my doctor and she recommend looking for a vitamin that had Folic Acid, Calcium, Iron, Omega-3 Fatty Acids, and Vitamin D. Other helpful ingredients to look for in a prenatal vitamin are Vitamin C, A, E, Zinc, Iodine and Copper. Medical history and diet are other reasons to talk with your doctor about what you should be looking for in a prenatal vitamin. For example: Hemochromatosis, a metabolic disorder where you have an excess amount of Iron in your body, and IBS-D run in my family. After talking with my doctor, she advised that a prenatal vitamin with Iron in it may make me nauseous and constipated, and that I personally could probably take a prenatal vitamin without Iron and be fine. If you have a certain diet your doctor will be able to tell you what dosage of vitamins and minerals you should be looking for in a prenatal vitamin.
So, what are your options? Like I said it’s a prenatal vitamin jungle out there so I wanted to help other mom’s out by comparing a few of the most popular prenatal vitamins I found in store at my local Target, and their pricing. (Pricing of course will differ by store, method of purchase (online or in store), and if you have a coupon or not.) (I have not included Happy Mama products or Bundle Organic products since they are supposed to be used as a compliment to your current prenatal vitamin. If you are looking for items to compliment your current prenatal vitamin Happy Mama offers gummies, drink mixes, squeeze pouch foods, and oat bars. Bundle Organics offers juices.)
Here are the Prenatal Vitamin Contenders: I have highlighted in green the highest amounts of the different vitamins/minerals in the different prenatal vitamins. In red are the highest Total Carb and Sugar content. I have also bolded and underlined the serving amount, how long the bottle should last you, and their price. Again, these are the most popular prenatal vitamin brands that are given the most aisle space, and end cap space. There are other prenatal vitamin brands that are not mentioned here, but I wanted to focus on the most popular.
Olly – The Essential Prenatal Multi-Vitamin: 60 gummies, serving size 2 gummies, will last you 30 days at $13.99. Sodium 5mg, Total Carb 6g, Sugars 4g, Protein 1g. VA 4000 IU, VC 30mg, VD3 400 IU, VE 15 IU, Niacin 20mg, VB6 2.5mg, Folic Acid 800mcg, VB12 8mcg, Zinc 3.8mg, Choline 10mg, Omega-3 70mg, DHA 50mg, EPA 10mg. No Calcium, Iron, or Copper.
vitaFusion Prenatal Gummies: 90 gummies, serving size 2 gummies, will last you 45 days for $9.89. Total Carb 4g, Sugars 4g, VA 4000 IU, VC 30mg, VD 400 IU, VE 15 IU, Niacin 20mg, VB6 2.5mg, Folic Acid 800mcg, VB12 8mcg, Iodine 150mcg, Zinc 3.8mg, Choline 10mg, Omega-3 65mg, DHA 50mg, Other Omega-3 15mg. No Calcium, Iron, or Copper.
Up & Up Prenatal Gummies: 90 gummies, serving size 2 gummies, will last you 45 days for $7.99. Total Carb 4g, Sugars 4g, VA 4000 IU, VC 30mg, VD 400 IU, VE 15 IU, Niacin 20mg, VB6 2.5mg, Folic Acid 800mcg, VB12 8mcg, Iodine 150mcg, Zinc 3.8mg, Choline 10mg, Omega-3 65mg, DHA 50mg, Other Omega-3 15mg. No Calcium, Iron, or Copper.
Nature Made Prenatal tablets with DHA: 90 liquid capsules, serving size 1 tablet, will last you 90 days for $19.99. Total Carb less than 1g, VA 4000 IU, VC 100mg, VD 400 IU, VE 11IU, Thiamin 1.5mg, Riboflavin (VB2) 1.7mg, Niacin 18mg, VB6 2.6mg, Folic Acid 800mcg, VB12 4mcg, Calcium 150mg, Iron 27mg, Iodine 150mcg, Zinc 25mg, Omega-3 228mg, DHA 200mg, EPA 28mg. No Copper.
Smarty Pants Prenatal Gummies: 120 gummies, serving size up to 6 gummies, will last you 20 days at 6 gummies a day for $22.95. Total Carb 11g, Sugars 8g, VA 3000 IU, VC 60mg, VD 1000 IU, VE 30 IU, VK 16mcg, Thiamin 0.08mg, Riboflavin (VB2) 0.17mg, Niacin 20mg, VB6 2.5mg, Folate 800mcg, VB12 10mcg, Biotin 30mcg, Pantothenic acid 10mg, Iodine 150mcg, Zinc 6.5mg, Sodium 25mg, Fish Oil 455mg, EPA 75mg, DHA 60mg, total Omega-3 165mg, Choline 12mg. No Calcium or Copper.
Premama Prenatal Vitamin Drink Mix Essentials: 28 pack, serving size 1 pack, will last you 28 days for $19.99. Total Carb 1g, Folic Acid 800mcg, Biotin 300mcg, VC 30mg, VB12 6mcg, VD2 900 IU, Calcium 100mg, Iron 9mg, Magnesium 60mg, Zinc 7.5mg, Copper 2mg, VB2 1.7mg, VB6 30mg, No DHA, Choline, Vitamin C, A, E, or Iodine. (They also have a mix with DHA. I will list it below as well.)
Premama Prenatal Vitamin Drink Mix Essentials + DHA: 28 pack, serving size 1 pack, will last you 28 days for $19.99. Total Carb 1.5g, Folic Acid 800mcg, Biotin 300mcg, VC 30mg, VB12 6mcg, VD2 900 IU, Calcium 100mg, Iron 9mg, Magnesium 60mg, Zinc 7.5mg, Copper 2mg, Flax Seed Oil and Algal Oil Fatty Acid Blend 165mg, Choline 25mg, VB2 1.7mg, VB6 30mg, ALA Omega-3 30mg, DHA 20mg. No Vitamin C, A, E, or Iodine.
The gist: Olly Prenatal Multi-Vitamin, vitaFusion Prenatal Gummies and Up & Up Prenatal Gummies are comparable ingredient wise, but not in price. All three do not have Calcium, Iron, or Copper in them. If you are looking to get more for your money, then you should look at Up & Up or vitaFusion. Nature’s Made Prenatal with DHA has everything that you should be looking for in a Prenatal Vitamin except Copper, and they are decently priced for how much you get. Smarty Pants Prenatal Gummies has the most vitamins/minerals, but doesn’t contain Calcium or Copper. They also have the highest number of gummies you have to take, Total Carbs, Sugar, and price. Premama Prenatal Vitamin Essential Mix has everything but DHA, Choline, Vitamin A, C, E and Iodine. Their Prenatal Vitamin Essential Mix + DHA has everything but Vitamin A, C, E and Iodine. The upside to Premama is you get to drink it instead. (This would probably be a prenatal vitamin that I would take/eat something else to compliment it.)
So… If, like me, extra Iron makes you sick then a Prenatal Vitamin like Olly’s, vitaFusion or Up & Up gummies will work for you. The Calcium they don’t have can be made up with the Calcium in Tums if you are suffering from heartburn while pregnant. It will come down to cost and taste for you. If you are ok with taking a pill with Iron, then Nature’s Made with DHA is the best option from above due to ingredients and price. For me, the Smarty Pants Prenatal Vitamins I saw at Target are just too expensive, and the Total Carb and Sugar count along with 6 gummies a day is a lot. I have tried Premama and it tastes good, and if you have a hard time taking pills or chewing gummy vitamins then Premama is a good choice. (They also offer free samples through their website.) I just wish they could add all the vitamins they are missing compared to the rest of the Prenatal Vitamins.
I hope this post has helped you in some way with your search for a prenatal vitamin. I have tried my best to bring you as much correct information regarding the above prenatal vitamins as I can, but again make sure to speak with your doctor when looking to start taking a prenatal vitamin. For those who already take a prenatal vitamin I would love to hear what you look for in a Prenatal Vitamin and what you take. 🙂