Prenatal Vitamin Checklist (aka Every Ingredient That Should Be in Your Prenatals)

Are you TTC or already pregnant and trying to pick out the very best prenatal vitamin to buy? We talked to OBGYN Dr. Gleaton about what ingredients you should be looking for in a prenatal vitamin — and why they’re important.

3 min readJun 29, 2020


By Dr. Kenosha Gleaton

The list of things to do when you’re trying to conceive or you find out you are pregnant can be daunting. One of the most important things you can do for yourself and your baby is to take a prenatal vitamin, and with so many on the market, we’re here to break down what ingredients you need to be looking for, and why they’re so important.

Vitamin A is important for the development of bones and teeth.

  • The recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for vitamin A is 770 μg/d
  • The tolerable upper intake level (UL) is 3,000 μg/d

Vitamin C is an antioxidant that aids in maintaining a healthy immune system and protecting the body.

Vitamin D works with calcium to promote strong bones and teeth.

Vitamin E is helpful for the production of blood cells.

Vitamin B1, also known as thiamin, is important for fetal brain development.

Vitamin B2, also known as riboflavin, is essential for ocular health for yourself and your baby. Riboflavin is also great for getting that healthy, glowy skin and development of fetal bones and nerves.

Vitamin B3, also known as niacin, can help reduce nausea and aid in digestion.

Vitamin B5, also known as pantothenic acid, is used for healthy fetal growth and regulation of adrenal glands

  • The RDA for pantothenic acid is 6 mg/d
  • The UL is ND

Vitamin B6 is extremely important for fetal brain development as well as preventing low birth weight, maintaining blood glucose, and alleviating morning sickness.

Vitamin B7, also known as biotin, helps with nails, skin, and hair.

Vitamin B12 not only helps build red blood cells, but supports growth of the neural tube, fetal brain and spinal cord.

Folate is also a necessity for development of the neural tube and fetal nervous system. Folic Acid is the synthetic form of folate.

Iron helps build up new red blood cells to carry oxygen around your body.

Calcium prepares your body to grow new teeth and bones for your baby, and supplementing with calcium ensures your own calcium stores won’t be depleted.

Iodine is important for fetal brain development.

Magnesium can be helpful in preventing low birth weight and helps regulate and maintain nerve and muscle cells.

Zinc helps with generating insulin and and enzymes

Selenium ensures healthy thyroid development and functioning.

Copper is important for developing and maintaining the fetal circulatory system.

Lutein, an antioxidant, helps protect the body against free radicals.

  • The RDA for lutein is ND
  • The UL is ND

Manganese aids in the development of fetal bone and cartilage

For more information on what to look for when choosing a prenatal vitamin, read here.




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