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One of the many decisions you have to make during pregnancy is choosing your prenatal. But have you ever googled “best prenatal” and been overwhelmed by the amount of choices? Not to mention confused by how they’re labeled? 

This article gives a generalized overview of the benefits of building your own prenatal. 

(Please note, we are NOT against taking prenatals! When it comes to health, we want to avoid extremes (with the only exception being loving Jesus). Rather, this is for those who are interested in building their own. Only you know your body best, so do what’s right for you.) *Not medical advise

 

What is a prenatal? Why do you have to take it? 

 

A prenatal is a combination of vitamins and minerals designed to help meet a woman’s increased nutrient requirement during pregnancy. In theory, taking a prenatal sounds like the silver bullet in making sure you get all your nutrients, right? 

Well…not so fast. 

Traditional prenatal supplements are composed of synthetic vitamins and minerals that are poorly absorbed. They also contain ingredients that deplete mineral stores, which can create long-term problems, if not careful. Also, the dosages of these synthetics are in quantities much higher than the RDA for pregnant women, which can be burdensome to your organ systems, like your liver.  

What’s an alternative? Building Your Own Prenatal 

 PROS of BYO Prenatal

The supplements are individualized to you and your unique healthy history. Since traditional prenatal vitamins don’t meet 100% of your nutrient needs and are a “one size fits all” approach, you’re able to intentionally fill in any “gaps” you may have. 

This route may be particularly helpful if you are going into pregnancy with PCOS, Endometriosis, Hypothyroidism, IBS, or an MTHFR mutation and need very specific supplemental support. 

Functional testing before getting pregnant, such as an HTMA, DUTCH, GI MAP, and/or Blood work can help reveal current deficiencies and nutrient needs, which can be so important to better tailor your own prenatal. 

Generally speaking, when building your own prenatal, the foundational supplements are:

  • Beef Liver
  • Magnesium 
  • Vitamin E 
  • Cod Liver Oil 
  • Probiotic

Additional add-ons could be (depending on your needs):

  • Chlorophyll 
  • Bee Pollen 
  • Collagen + Gelatin
  • Vitamin C 
  • Vitamin K2 
  • Iodine + Selenium

*a note on purchasing: We created a public protocol on Fullscript with many of the above included recommendations. Fullscript is a professional supplement dispensary with quality brands, you can create a free account and have access to purchase!

* For the Vitamin C, Collagen and Gelatin, we love Perfect Supplements. You can use code KCPHARMD to save 10% 

Extra Considerations of BYO Prenatal

This approach to supplementation does require that you’re already intentionally eating a nourishing diet. If this is you, then you’ll notice not much changes in how you’re already supplementing and eating. 

When thinking about a “nourishing diet”, we’re referring to a diet that (for at least 80% of the time) includes foods that help your body naturally detox, support your thyroid, aid digestion, promote a robust immune system, and increase your resiliency to stress. 

In other words, your food works for you (instead of you working for it).  It would include plenty of the following:

  •  Real protein (salmon, seafood, beef, pork, eggs, gelatin, and dairy). 
  • Properly prepared vegetables (dark greens, mushrooms, bell peppers, squash, and root veggies like carrots and beets). 
  • Carbohydrates (fruits, fruit juices, potatoes, sprouted grains if tolerated, organic sugar, maple syrup, honey, and molasses). 
  • Saturated fats (butter, tallow, coconut oil, avocado, coconut milk, dairy)
  • Minerals (adrenal cocktails, electrolytes, specific herbal teas, and bone broth)

A commonly asked question I get is what to do when traveling and you don’t have access to the best sources of food. 

This is where flexibility comes in! 

For times such as these, go ahead and take a high-quality prenatal! The last thing you need is to be worrying about finding all of these foods when you should be enjoying your time away 🙂 

If you have questions about this, DM us on Social Media or contact me at Hannah@cornerstoneintegrativehealing.com

If you want to dive deeper, I’d encourage you to pick up Lily Nichols Real Food for Pregnancy for further research! 

This is for educational purposes only and is not to be taken for medical advice.

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