woman feeling naseaus prenatal vitmains

Are Prenatal Vitamins Making You Sick? Here’s What To do About It

You’re pregnant and you’re suffering from nausea, constipation, low appetite, diarrhea, fatigue, or cramps. But, you notice that it’s not every day – it’s only most days. Specifically, it’s the days you remember to take your prenatal vitamins first thing in the morning.

Or maybe you notice the moment you take your prenatal vitamin you suddenly feel sick.

You aren’t alone in wondering “are prenatal vitamins making me sick…really?”

Look, I get it. It is frustrating when you are trying to do the right thing to take care of your body and your baby but, the more you try, you just feel worse and worse.

That’s why it’s important to know what makes some prenatal vitamins better than others. So that you can feel good during pregnancy, while also making a healthy choose for your and baby.

Of course – we do have a favorite prenatal vitamin from a company called this is needed. A brand created by moms and scientists together to address the nutritional deficiencies that 95% of pregnant moms have.

Most prenatal vitamins are created with the bare minimum nutrition to prevent serious birth defects and diseases. But Needed went a step further to create a vitamin that would provide real nourishment to real moms – like you.

But, if you’re not ready to switch up your vitamin yet, here are some tips to help you, the savvy mom, figure out if it’s really your prenatal vitamin making you sick and what to do about it.


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Could My Prenatal Vitamins Be Making Me Sick

woman nauseous from prenatal vitamins

This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. I participate in the Amazon associates program as well as others.

Yes! prenatal vitamins could be making you sick. Whether your gummy vitamins are making you feel nauseous or your capsule vitamins are making you constipated – there is probably a reason.

Now, many women are told to just suck it up and deal with it. Or even worse, they are told they are making their symptoms up when they think that their prenatal vitamins could be making them sick.

The truth is that studies have confirmed that prenatal vitamins do have side effects. Surprisingly (#notsurprisingly), neither is every prenatal vitamin made the same nor does every woman have the same nutritional needs or deficiencies before, during, or after pregnancy. Therefore, different women need different prenatal vitamins.

Use this guide to investigate WHY your prenatal vitamin is making you sick and find an option that will serve your body and your baby better.

You’ll see my recommendations for the best prenatal vitamins at the end.

The Top Three Reasons Your Prenatal Vitamin Could Make You Sick

woman holding prenatal vitamins could prenatal vitamins make me sick?

You’re probably wondering, how do I know if my prenatal vitamins are making me sick? I will help you figure that out right now.

There are three main reasons prenatal vitamins could be making you nauseous, ill, or uncomfortable. And when you see what the reasons are, you are going to know that finding a new prenatal vitamin ASAP is the right thing.

1. Iron In Your Prenatal Vitamin May Be Making You Sick

The most common reason prenatal vitamins make you sick is that it can cause you to get too much iron. Although iron is in most capsule prenatal vitamins, it is one of the most common ingredients that can make you sick during pregnancy. Women are very different when it comes to how much iron they need during pregnancy and when they need it.

Too much iron, which can easily happen with supplements, can result in side effects such as constipation, nausea, throwing up, or diarrhea.

Too much iron can also escalate and be a contributor to gestational diabetes and other pregnancy complications.

On the other hand, not enough iron can result in anemia, fatigue, or low body temperature.

If your prenatal vitamin is making you sick – check and see if it has iron. Then, work with your doctor to see if you even need an iron supplement. This can be seen by taking a simple blood draw.

Many women do not need iron supplements during pregnancy. Other women will take a separate supplement for iron so that they can get the exact amount they need.

Our favorite prenatal vitamin Needed does not contain Iron. But, if you test and see that you need it, you can easily add on a separate supplement.

2. Folic Acid Could Be Making You Sick And Cause Miscarriage

Another outdated recommendation is that all women should be supplementing with folic acid during pregnancy. Most prenatal vitamins contain folic acid (as do most processed cereals and breads). This is an especially common reason when it’s gummy vitamins making you sick as those never have iron.

The truth is folic acid is not used for anything in the body. Once you consume folic acid, your body turns it into another nutrient called folate. This new nutrient, folate, is then used in the structure of every single cell in your baby’s body and your own body. Yep, folate is pretty important.

But, there is a BIG problem with this. And that problem is that 40% of people cannot change folic acid into folate at the cellular level. For these people, folic acid builds up and becomes a toxin.

Too much folic acid can increase your risk for miscarriage, and breast cancer. Not only that, folic acid can build up in your liver – and then you are at risk for other problems such as cholestasis.

Too much folic acid (not folate – what you really need) can also increase the risks of your baby developing asthma and some researchers are linking too much folic acid to increased risks of autism developing as well.

To learn more about why this is, check out Dr. Ben Lynch’s book Dirty Genes.

If your prenatal vitamin has folic acid and it’s making you feel sick in any way, you should replace it with one that has folate as soon as possible.

Our recommended prenatal vitamin Needed has the most easily absorbed for of folate in it’s optimal form, Methylfolate. Whether you use Needed or not, you should make sure your prenatal vitamin contains this form of folate, not folic acid.

3. Your Vitamin Is Made Out Of Synthetics Your Body Can’t Absorb

One last thing you should consider when investigating why your prenatal is making you sick is what your vitamin is made out of. A huge difference between vitamin quality is how they are made and how your body absorbs them.

Some vitamins are made out of synthetically created vitamins. These are simply chemicals that attempt to mimic what happens naturally in nature. For example folic acid is the synthetic (man-made) form of folate. As you can see, it is not the same thing.

Whole food vitamins are condensed and concentrated from real fruits and vegetables. Typically, your body has less work to do to absorb and use the whole food vitamins. If you are taking synthetic vitamins, folic acid may not be the only synthetic vitamin your body cannot actually use that turns into a toxin. Make sure that you are using a whole food prenatal vitamin.

Needed uses the most bioavailable form of each nutrient. You can see a breakdown of each nutrient included and what it does here.

Is My Gummy Prenatal Vitamin Making Me Nasueous?

Some women have an easier time finding the problem than others. If you are taking a gummy prenatal – you are likely one of them.

You see – if a gummy prenatal vitamin is making you sick, it’s easier to find the solution. This is because gummy vitamins very rarely have iron in them. Gummy vitamins are so much like candy it is not safe for these products to have iron because children could easily find them and consume unsafe levels of iron.

This means that you already know that too much iron is not your problem, It is likely because of synthetic vitamins in your product. Check out the recommendations below for the best choices when your prenatal vitamin is making you sick.

Prenatal Vitamin Recommendations That Won’t Make You Sick

pregnant woman not sick from prenatal vitamins

There are a few companies that have gone above and beyond to make sure that everything about their prenatal vitamin is helpful, easily absorbed, and won’t make you sick. These are my best prenatal vitamin recommendations to use if your current prenatal vitamin is making you sick.

My Top Prenatal Recommendation: This Is Needed Prenatal Vitamin

When moms Julia Sawaya and Ryan Woodberry discovered they had nutritional deficiencies in pregnancy even after doing everything right – they set out to make a change. When they looked at the research, they found that even though 97% of women take a prenatal (in the US) 95% still have nutritional deficiencies. They set out to create a vitamin that would meet the needs of all Mama’s to Be. Clinically tested and inspired by nature – these are our favorite prenatal vitamins to recommend.

Use code BRAVELY for 20% of a one time purchase or three months of the subscribe and save option.

My Second Prenatal Recommendation: Eu Naturals

Eu Naturals in one of the most empowering companies there is. If you prefer your vitamin in the form of a capsule, this is absolutely the best one out there. With Folate instead of folic acid, DHA to support healthy brain development and 25 vitamins and minerals in a organic, whole food formula, you can’t go wrong.

Plus, for each bottle sold, they provide a year of vitamins to a child in need.

My Third Prenatal Recommendation: Root’d

Rooted is another fun way to get your prenatal, especially if you like to drink your vitamins. These drink packets pack in the 25 vitamins and minerals you need, plus 5 super greens, plus 3 probiotics, plus hydrating electrolytes all into one sparkling drink mix.

If you need a vitamin that also has a probiotic in one, this is the one you should go to. However, in general, you can get a more well-rounded and better probiotic if you just take a probiotic supplement. If you are on a budget though, this is the best choice.

Root'd Best Powder Multivitamin for Men Women and Prenatal

Are Prenatal Vitamins Important?

pregnant woman with fruit prenatal vitamins worth it

Some women wonder, are prenatal vitamins important? It is understandable that if you’ve been taking a prenatal vitamin that just makes you feel even sicker, that you may be wondering if it is worth it.

What does a prenatal vitamin do for you anyway?

The truth is, there are some women who are so good at taking care of themselves and eating a well-balanced diet that they don’t really need any supplements. But, that is extremely hard. Especially because most of the conventional wisdom about heating healthy doesn’t work during pregnancy.

For the most up-to-date information about how to use nutrition to prevent serious complications in your pregnancy and for your baby, check out our guides on the optimal prenatal diet, what to eat when pregnant and the best super foods for pregnancy.

Growing a baby will take a lot from you and you do not want to deplete yourself. When you become nutritionally depleted you are at risk for cavities, brittle bones in your later life, complications of all kinds, your body will be more tired, you will have more aches and cramps and you will have a harder time recovering postpartum, emotionally and physically.

Finding a prenatal vitamin that works for you is crucial to your lifelong health. Pregnancy is a key time to nurture and nourishes your body. Having the proper nutrients is an important way to protect your baby and yourself from many lifelong conditions.

Prenatal Vitamins Making Me Sick Conclusion

prenatal vitamins making woman feel ill

At the beginning of this article, you were probably wondering why are my prenatal vitamins making me sick? Now you know that prenatal vitamins make you sick when the vitamins you are ingesting are not what your body needs.

Likely, you are getting too much or not enough iron, or you are getting synthetic versions of vitamins your body can’t really do anything with. The most common example of this is when a vitamin has folic acid instead of more usable forms of folate.

You now have options and choices. If your prenatal vitamins are suddenly making you sick, you know what to try next and what to ask your doctor about. Don’t let your prenatal vitamin make you sick all day. Find something that will better serve you and your perfect baby.

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