Skip to content

Blog, Stories, Info & Tips By THE BIRTH STORE


Preconception Care: What To Look Out For In Prenatal Supplements

Preconception Care: What To Look Out For In Prenatal Supplements

One essential aspect of preconception care is ensuring adequate nutrition, laying the groundwork for a healthy pregnancy. This can be achieved by consuming a wholefoods diet and including some high-quality prenatal supplements. However, not all prenatal supplements are created equal. As a clinical naturopath dedicated to supporting women throughout preconception, pregnancy and postpartum, I'm here to guide you through what to look for when selecting your prenatal supplements.

Unfortunately, some over-the-counter prenatal supplements (such as Elevit) do not contain the optimal form and dosages of various nutrients. It is best to consult with a qualified health practitioner to ensure you are consuming the recommended form and dosages of nutrients in the preconception phase.

About the Author:

Maddie Lyons (BHSc) is a clinical naturopath based in Sydney, Australia. With expertise in herbal medicine and nutrition, Maddie is dedicated to empowering people on their journey with holistic health.

At Maddie Lyons Naturopathy, she offers comprehensive online consultations tailored to each client's unique needs, providing personalised treatment plans and prescriptions of herbal and nutritional medicine. With a focus on supporting women throughout preconception, pregnancy, and postpartum, male partners during preconception, and children’s health conditions.

Maddie offers Couple’s Preconception Consultations Australia Wide via Telehealth:

Disclaimer: This information is provided for general purposes only and does not substitute for professional health advice. Consult with a qualified health practitioner for personalised advice regarding your prenatal supplements.

Activated Folate
L-methylfolate or Methylfolate is the activated, bioavailable form of folic acid that the body can use readily to support homocysteine metabolism (Also known as Folinic acid or Levomefolic acid). One of the most crucial components of prenatal vitamins is folate. This B vitamin is essential for preventing neural tube defects in the developing baby. Look for a prenatal vitamin that contains at least 400-800 micrograms of activated folate.

Pregnancy increases the body's demand for iron to support the expansion of blood volume and the development of the baby's organs. Therefore, iron deficiency is very common in pregnancy. Opt for a prenatal vitamin containing iron to prevent iron-deficiency anaemia and support healthy foetal growth. Aim for an absorbable form of iron with fewer side effects such as iron bisglycinate. Iron requirements are individualised, so iron levels should be monitored regularly with blood testing.

Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is a potent antioxidant vital for cellular health and energy production. In the preconception phase, CoQ10 supplementation may support reproductive health and enhance egg quality. CoQ10's antioxidant properties mitigate oxidative stress, benefiting both maternal and foetal health during pregnancy.

Choline is a vital nutrient, playing a crucial role in foetal brain development. Adequate choline intake has been associated with a reduced risk of neural tube defects and supports healthy liver function. Additionally, choline helps prevent pregnancy complications such as preeclampsia. Ensure that your prenatal supplements contain choline to meet pregnancy requirements.

Iodine is another essential nutrient for a healthy pregnancy, critical for thyroid function and the production of thyroid hormones. These hormones are needed for the baby's brain development and metabolism. Make sure your prenatal supplements contain iodine, preferably in the form of potassium iodide.

In the ideal world, preconception care begins at least 3-6 months prior to conception. This involves unique requirements for both the female and male partner as it takes approximately 100 days for an egg to fully mature and be released during ovulation, whilst sperm takes approximately 74 days to mature. Therefore, the baby’s genetic profile is equally dependant on the health of both the egg and the sperm! Consider prenatal supplements as a key component of your preconception care, in addition to various diet and lifestyle recommendations from your naturopath.

P.S. Preconception care goes far beyond prenatal supplements. Work with a naturopath to investigate your nutritional status, hormone profiles, gut microbiome, toxic load, health history, diet and lifestyle factors all contributing to fertility and conception.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published..

Join the Discussion on Facebook

Join our supportive Facebook community and join in on our many discussions related to pregnancy, birth, postpartum, breastfeeding & more. We prioritise community, support and positive discussions. 

Join Now
Cart 0

Your cart is currently empty.

Start Shopping