3rd Trimester

PSA on Prenatal Gummy Vitamins

Well, I feel like an idiot and maybe this is common knowledge. I'm sure a lot of you will being saying, " DUH! You didn't know???" But if I can enlighten just one other person- then it's worth it.

I started this pregnancy taking the Target brand Up and Up prenatal vitamins which are a generic version of Stuart prenatals and contain adequate amounts of all of the suggested vitamins/minerals. After having morning sickness for 5 months, I was getting desperate to try anything to relieve my nausea and switched to the Target brand Up and Up Prenatal Gummy Vitamins. (I don't think I compared or studied the label- I assumed the two were comparable to eachother. Anyhow, my doctor discovered that I am anemic after my last blood test and has put me on Iron supplements. I researched possible causes and decided to double check the label on the Gummy vitamins- which are a generic version of the vitafusion vitamins. Low and behold, the gummies contain NO iron- as in 0%. I was shocked and of course scolded myself for not checking. Turns out my weeks of extra tiredness, shortness of breath, and trouble concentrating probably could have been avoided if I had read the label.

Oh well, live and learn. Check your labels- not all vitamins are created equal.

 

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Re: PSA on Prenatal Gummy Vitamins

  • this is why i strongly believe food and eating healthy plays a big role. I do not take any prenatals and my iron levels are "soaring" according to my blood tests. there is a chance that prenatals with iron would have helped you out OR you may have developed pregnancy anemia regardless.
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  • Iron vitamins can bring about nausea, which is probably why a lot of women prefer the non-iron pills, especially in the first trimester.
  • image RussianMommy:
    this is why i strongly believe food and eating healthy plays a big role. I do not take any prenatals and my iron levels are "soaring" according to my blood tests. there is a chance that prenatals with iron would have helped you out OR you may have developed pregnancy anemia regardless.

    Yes, I know this, but I do not eat red meat at all- so I probably have lower levels to begin with. I eat a lot of spinach, but knew I had to take a prenatal with iron to help my numbers. I just didn't check the label when I switched brands. And yes, I may have become anemic anyhow- I'll never know.

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  • I thought I was the only one that did this. I took the gummy Up & Up with DS and ended up losing to much blood and almost needing a transfusion after my c-section never knowing that I did not take in an extra iron my whole pregnancy. This pregnancy with DD I finally read the label and realized that the vitamins didn't have iron so I ended up switching to try and avoid the same situation. I feel way better this pregnancy than the last one. Don't feel too bad it took me 1 1/2 pregnancies to figure this out.
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  • I didn't know this. Good to know. Thanks :)
    *Alaina Nicole was born March 28th, 2013* -Siggy!
  • I take VitaFusion but I knew there was no iron.  I get plenty of iron through my diet though and probably everything else I need.  I just take them as a back up.  
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  • I was anemic before pregnancy, so I knew to look for vitamins with iron (otherwise I would have made the same mistake!)  But even with my Rx prenatals WITH iron, my dr called after my 1 hr glucose test to say I passed, but I need to take an iron supplement. =(   And I knowingly consume more iron in my diet.  Sheeesh this baby takes a lot!
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  • Most prenatal vitamins don't contain iron.  I learned that with my first pregnancy, when I was dealing with pregnancy-related anemia.  You can supplement with OTC iron tablets, or you can dig around for prenatals that do contain iron.

    FWIW, in response to a PP who I'm currently too lazy to quote, pregnancy-related anemia isn't always something that can be controlled by diet.  I was severely anemic with my first pregnancy - to the point  and I could stuff my face with red meats and green leafy veggies until the cows came home and would still be on the verge of passing out at any given moment.  The extra iron tablets were definitely a necessity in my case.

    As a general bit of advice, I tell all newly-pregnant women I know to check their vitamin bottles to see if iron is in there.  Not all preggos need it, but some will.

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  • My MW suggested a liquid iron supplement called Floradix.  It tastes terrible, but gives me the extra iron I need.
  • Gummy vitamins tend to not have iron, because of the fear that kids will eat a bunch of them and get iron poisoning. 
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  • It's not just the gummies and it's not just iron.  Every vitamin on the market has a different formulation, and that includes not just the percentage of any vitamin/mineral but also whether it has that vitamin/mineral/other nutrient at all.  Classic example is even just comparing the sample packs from my OB/GYN in the "Yay you're prego" bag I got at the beginning of my pregnancy.  Each is different.  Some have DHA, some don't.  Some have iron, some don't.  

    I like the gummies and they're tasty; I also like that they *don't* have iron because iron overdose is a huge cause of death/poisoning in kids.  Putting it in a gummy is just asking for a kid to get a hold of it and eat a ton.  

    I also wasn't anemic earlier on and wouldn't really need the extra iron beyond my own dietary sources; I am now, and now I take a separate iron sup.  I have different prenatals and some I take a DHA with it and some have the DHA included.  

    It's up to us to know what each pill has and if it's lacking anything we might need at that stage (iron, DHA, extra anything else we may be told we may be lacking or need more of) take a supplement accordingly.  Iron & DHA are both easily purchased separately. 

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  • image sometimesdee:
    Gummy vitamins tend to not have iron, because of the fear that kids will eat a bunch of them and get iron poisoning. 

    This.  Due to their yumminess, they leave out the iron.  I've been taking the VitaFusion Prenatal Gummies for four years now (two pregnancies and breastfeeding.)  My iron levels have always come out fine, but I took an iron supplement too with my first pregnancy due to my hatred of meat.  I've eaten plenty of meat with this one though. Watch out if you are now on an iron supplements because they can cause extreme constipation issues! You might want to add in some colace too or a lot of extra fiber to balance out that issue.

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  • image Corey-chick:

    image RussianMommy:
    this is why i strongly believe food and eating healthy plays a big role. I do not take any prenatals and my iron levels are "soaring" according to my blood tests. there is a chance that prenatals with iron would have helped you out OR you may have developed pregnancy anemia regardless.

    Yes, I know this, but I do not eat red meat at all- so I probably have lower levels to begin with. I eat a lot of spinach, but knew I had to take a prenatal with iron to help my numbers. I just didn't check the label when I switched brands. And yes, I may have become anemic anyhow- I'll never know.

    I only occasionally eat red meat. I used the gummy's b/c the other pills made me nauseated, so did the iron supplements that I bought since I knew the gummies were without iron(I think there's something about the iron composition that makes it not conducive to being in gummy form. My doc suggested cooking with an iron skillet. My levels were normal, but on the low side of normal. They'd prob be better if I ate more red meat, cooked with the skillet more, and took my iron.

    I love the taste of those gummies though. Yum. I'd rather do them and then supplement.

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  • image sometimesdee:
    Gummy vitamins tend to not have iron, because of the fear that kids will eat a bunch of them and get iron poisoning. 

    this... it's on the label of vitafusion in the green highlighted section... every vitamin is different so it's important to check the labels of all vitamins regardless of if they are for pregnancy or not...

     

    image jreavey:My MW suggested a liquid iron supplement called Floradix.  It tastes terrible, but gives me the extra iron I need.

    and this... liquid iron is sooooo much better absorbed than solid iron...
    I've been taking the gluten free version which is called floravital... and is better to take during BF due to the lack of gluten for preventing thrush, and the fact that lack of iron can really affect your supply...
     I don't think it tastes that bad and I would highly recommend it if you need an iron supplement... last pregnancy I was severely anemic and taking this boosted my iron so much...

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  • None of the gummies have iron in case a child gets into them.
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  • I take normal vitmans, and I was told that was ok. I eat healthy and I prefer not to have extra iron. It is not good on the stomach to put it nicely ;) Some people need extra iron, when they run your OB pannel at the first appt they test your hemoglobin, that will clue you in. Also you can start to have symptoms. Not everyone need extra iron, some do.
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  • The reason for this is because too much iron can be toxic in children, and Target was concerned that the gummy vitamins could be more easily mistaken for candy. :-)

     

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  • With my last pregnancy I did the same thing. I felt so stupid bc I figured they had iron. Oh well. lol Now, I take them with iron so I don't feel like poop all day. 

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  • I'm not pregnant, but I lurk all over The Bump...

     Anywho, I started taking prenatals about two month ago because my husband and I are getting closer to thinking about kids.  I went to give blood after starting the vitamins and was turned away - for the first time in my life! - due to low iron.  I was SO confused because I was taking a vitamin.  I should have more iron in me than ever before.

    Yup - prenatal gummies don't have iron.  I, also, learned the hard way, but luckily it wasn't in the throes of pregnancy.  The reasons for no iron in he gummies have been already said above.  Very interesting!

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  • I have a GI problem so I can't have iron supplements or foods with too much iron. My body just doesn't process or absorb it. I take the GNC Iron free prenatal and my iron levels are fine even without eating iron-rich foods daily. You may have had the issue all along and it wasn't your prenatal. You should be getting enough iron from your food even while pregnant, if not, it's your body having a deficiency :( Don't let your doctor bully you into thinking you did something wrong. Although label reading is always a good idea!
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  • The gummy vitamins are the only ones that don't make me puke, so it was either these or nothing.  I knew they didn't have iron which is why I chose them- I needed to stop puking and it worked :).  My iron levels have been fine since switching.

    Mommy to L (6), J (4) and S (March 2013)

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