6 Key Nutrients That Pregnant Women Aren't Getting Enough Of

5 min read

Getting adequate nutrition is one of the most important responsibilities women have throughout their pregnancies — not only for themselves but also for the lifelong health of their babies.

While you’re pregnant, the fetus gets all its nutrients from your body. So, it’s vital that you eat healthy foods and supplement with prenatal vitamins to ensure high enough levels of vitamins, minerals, and essential fatty acids.

human fetus nutrition | 2nutri | New Zealand

This article explains the six key nutrients that pregnant women aren’t getting enough of and how you can add the supplements to your diet.

1. Folic acid

You can find folic acid in many foods such as dark green leafy vegetables (spinach, broccoli, asparagus, etc.), beans, sunflower seeds, fresh fruit, liver, peanuts, eggs, and seafood.

Folic acid is a type of vitamin B that promotes healthy new cells in our bodies and can prevent pregnancy complications such as birth defects of the baby’s spine and brain.

Folic Acid | 2nutri | New Zealand

2. Iron

Iron is a mineral that makes a protein in the body to help carry oxygen from the lungs throughout the rest of the body.

When pregnant, you need twice as much of the mineral. This is due to ensuring the fetus gets enough blood and oxygen while growing.

Most women find it hard to get this solely from food, but you can find it in lean meat, poultry, seafood, leafy green vegetables, dried fruit, nuts, and beans.

You should consider eating food rich in vitamin C when consuming iron-rich foods to increase iron absorption in your body. While doing so, you should avoid foods high in calcium, as it has the opposite effect.

Iron | 2nutri | New Zealand

3. Calcium

Now, you shouldn’t avoid calcium altogether (only decrease the amount when eating iron-rich foods) because this mineral is also essential to pregnant women.

You can find calcium in broccoli, kale, and most dairy products.

Getting enough calcium ensures your body doesn’t take any from your own bones while pregnant and assists in developing your baby’s bones, heart, muscles, nerves, and teeth.

calcium | 2nutri | New Zealand

4. Vitamin D

Also known as the sunshine vitamin, Vitamin D is vital to the health of your muscles, nerves, and immune system but also your baby’s development of its teeth and bones. That is due to the vitamin helping your body absorb calcium.

For some people, it can be hard to get enough sun every day. You can also find vitamin D in oily fish, liver, egg yolk, red meat, and some fortified foods such as breakfast cereal.

vitamin d | 2nutri | New Zealand

5. Iodine

Iodine is a mineral. Your body needs this to help the fetus’ development of its entire nervous system, which will make it able to think, feel, and move.

Not all prenatal vitamins contain this mineral, so consult with the provider and try to eat more fish and dairy products. Alternatively, you can also get it through fortified foods like cereal and bread, where it’s added to it.

iodine | 2nutri | New Zealand

6. DHA

DHA is an acid found in Omega-3s. It t supports your immune system, heart, and brain function. You especially need it for your baby to be able to develop its eyes and brain.

Once again, prenatal vitamins might not contain DHA. You should consult with the provider and try to eat more fatty fish like salmon and herring.


omega-3 | 2nutri | New Zealand

The bottom line

It can be a challenge for some people to determine the right amounts of every vitamin, mineral, and essential fatty acid they consume in the food they eat every day.

Taking any of these essential nutrients as supplements can help you in the right direction.

However, it’s always important to consult a healthcare professional before starting to ensure proper dosing and safety.

At 2nutri, we offer a wide range of supplements to help you through your pregnancy. Visit our product page to learn more!

Calcium Folic acid Iron Pregnancy

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