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Motherhood,  Postpartum

Best Postnatal Vitamins for Moms

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Everything You Need to Know About Postnatal Vitamins

If you want to boost your postpartum recovery and you’re looking for the best postnatal vitamins, you’ve come to the right place!

Your body has just done one of the most remarkable things it will ever do – grow another human being. After 9 months of waiting, you are probably excited to finally hold your little bundle of joy.

Your delivery may have been complicated or easy. No matter what it looked like, your body has been through trauma just the same. And now it needs to rest and recover.  

How long does it take for your body to fully recover after having a baby?

The postnatal (or postpartum) period begins immediately after childbirth as your body, including hormone levels and uterus size, returns to a non-pregnant state.

Your postpartum recovery won’t be just a few days. Fully recovering from pregnancy and childbirth can take months and sometimes even more than a year. While many women feel mostly recovered by 6 to 8 months, it may take longer than this to feel like yourself again.

During this time, you may feel as though your body has turned against you. Try not to feel frustrated. You should remember that your body is not aware of your timelines and expectations. The best thing you can to for it is to rest and give yourself a break.

You can help your body to recover faster by eating well, exercise, and taking postnatal vitamins.

What are postnatal vitamins?

Postnatal multivitamins are specially designed to support the nutritional needs of women who recently gave birth as well as women who are breastfeeding.

Why postnatal vitamins are important?

Pregnancy depletes several nutrients in the body, including folate, calcium, and vitamin B6. What’s more, if you are breastfeeding, your daily recommended dose of many nutrients is even higher than it was in pregnancy.

Although a nutrient-dense, well-rounded diet can help you meet your nutrient needs, experts recommend that postnatal vitamins be taken after delivery to ensure that your nutrient stores are being properly replenished, especially for those with restrictive diets.  

Prenatal vs postnatal vitamins – What’s the difference between prenatal and postnatal vitamins?

While there is no harm in just finishing off the bottle of prenatal supplements, postnatal vitamins are typically built to include higher amounts of vitamins A, C, D, K and minerals such as calcium and magnesium.

It is important to note that supplementing with a pre or postnatal vitamin is not necessarily required for women with a well-balanced or nutritious diet that meets the requirements recommended by the FDA. However, many moms take postnatal vitamins while breastfeeding to supplement and boost postpartum recovery and milk production in breastfeeding moms.  

When should I switch from prenatal to postnatal vitamins?

Women should consider switching to postnatal vitamins as soon as they give birth. Quality postnatal multivitamins specifically formulated for this life stage can help bridge the nutritional needs for new moms.

Postpartum vitamins

There are 5 critical nutrients for postpartum mothers:

  • Iron – Iron deficiency and anemia during the postpartum period may have long-term health implications for the mother and her infant. Mothers with low iron stores at the time of delivery and following childbirth may experience fatigue, altered cognition and depressive symptoms. It’s important to replenish the iron you lose during childbirth.
  • Vitamin B12 – required for proper red blood cell development, energy production, and helping to form our DNA.
  • DHA (OMEGA 3 FATTY ACID) – Critical for the growth and development of your baby’s brain and nervous system, especially since your baby’s brain grows very quickly in his first year of life and triples in size by his first birthday.
  • Vitamin D – Supports immune system, brain and nervous system and reduce the risk of postpartum depression and postpartum anxiety.
  • Choline – Crucial for infant memory and brain development.

Best postnatal vitamins for breastfeeding moms

If you are breastfeeding, you must be asking yourself what vitamins should I take while breastfeeding?

There is a variety of postnatal vitamin supplements on the market. Always check with your doctor before beginning any supplement.

Here are 6 most popular postnatal vitamins for breastfeeding moms:

Actif Organic Postnatal Vitamin

 

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Nature Made Postnatal Multivitamin

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Rainbow Light Postnatal

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New Chapter Postnatal

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Ritual Essential Postnatal

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Postnatal Gummy Vitamins: Pink Stork Postnatal Gummies

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Postnatal vitamins for hair growth

You may notice that your hair is losing after delivery. Postpartum hair loss is caused primarily due to a shift in hormones after pregnancy.

It’s normal to shed between 50 and 100 hairs a day (if you’re not pregnant).

After birth, new moms can shed up to 400 hairs a day. But you should know that postpartum hair loss is normal.

Taking vitamins postpartum may help your hair get back to normal faster.  

What vitamins help postpartum hair loss?

You’ll want to check the label for ones that contain antioxidants like vitamins E and C, which help to protect the scalp and hair follicles. Biotin and zinc, on the other hand, are what help fortify your hair and help it grow.  

Baby Blues Postpartum Hair Loss Vitamins

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Vitamins to strengthen teeth

Calcium helps build strong bones and teeth and plays an important role in the healthy functioning of the circulatory, muscular, and nervous systems. Pregnant and breastfeeding women should get 1,000 mg of calcium a day. Most of the postpartum vitamins contain calcium.

Foods such as low-fat or fat-free milk, yogurt and cheese, and fortified soymilk help promote strong teeth and bones.

Vitamins for postpartum depression

It is common to experience what’s often referred to as the “Baby Blues” after giving birth. Your hormone changes can trigger mood swings, anxiety, trouble sleeping, and more. If your symptoms last longer than two weeks, you may have postpartum depression.

You should know that one recent study found that 1 in 7 women may experience postpartum depression in the year after giving birth. Postpartum depression is more common than most people think. So, you should not hesitate and reach for help if you feel depressed postpartum. Treatment for depression, such as therapy or medicine, works and will help you and your baby be as healthy as possible in the future.

Postnatal vitamins for mental health

According to WebMD, a diet that includes vitamin B complex helps boost mental health. Low levels of folate and D vitamins have been linked to depression or mood disorder.   

Recent research points to the importance of omega-fatty acids in reducing depressive symptoms in the postpartum period.

Maintaining a healthy diet may help you avoid nutritional deficiencies that cause mental health problems postpartum. That being said, vitamin supplements cannot replace mental illness treatment medication, if needed.

Does breastfeeding help with postpartum depression?

Yes! Breastfeeding helps postpartum depression!

A research found that women who breastfed until 6 months were less likely to experience postpartum depressive symptoms.  

Here are 5 ways breastfeeding can help reduce postpartum depression:

  1. It builds an emotional connection with your baby
  2. After you and your baby get used to breastfeeding, it gives you time to rest and recover
  3. It is comfortable – you don’t need to worry about baby food. The Academy of American Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that babies be exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months, with its continuation lasting for at least 1 year.
  4. It’s the healthiest choice for your baby – and it supports your baby’s physical development.
  5. Breastfeeding will help your uterus return to its normal size more quickly so you can recover faster.

Postpartum depression can make the already stressful period immediately following childbirth even more difficult. If you think you have postpartum depression, you should talk to your doctor and seek professional advice. The sooner you can get help with managing your depression, the sooner you can begin to enjoy your baby and motherhood. You should also make sure that you are getting your daily recommended dosage of nutrients.

 How long to take postnatal vitamins?

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends taking postnatal vitamins for as long as you’re breastfeeding. Women who choose not to breastfeed should continue to take their postnatal vitamins for at least 6 months postpartum to ensure that their nutrient stores are replenished.   

Bottom Line,

Postpartum is your time to recover and get back to yourself.

Find good quality postnatal vitamin that has B vitamins, choline, iron, vitamin D, and DHA (optional), so you don’t have to take individual pills for each vitamin and mineral.  Check with your doctor if you are unsure of the safety of a vitamin or supplement while breastfeeding.

Remember to maintain a healthy and well-balanced diet and relax.

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