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Pregnancy Vitamins: What to Consider when Buying One Part 2

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A continuation of our previous post.

Dangerous Ingredients

Taking prenatal vitamins for the health of you and your baby? Then watch out for these dangerous ingredients found in some of the leading prenatal vitamins. Make sure to read the labels carefully. Avoid prenatal supplements that include ingredients like BHT, FD&C red no. 40, Sodium Benzoate and Titanium dioxide.

BHT is a skin, liver and kidney toxicant. It is stored in the liver and in fat making thin people more at risk for damage associated with consumption of this ingredient. Studies have shown that BHT promotes cancer and the growth of tumours.

In Europe, FD&C red no. 40 which is often used as a food colorant, is not recommended for consumption by children and yet many of the leading prenatal vitamins include this in their formulations. It is banned in the UK, Denmark, Belgium, France, Switzerland and Sweden.

Sodium Benzoate combined with ascorbic acid and potassium benzoate may form benzene. Benzene is a known carcinogen. Similarly, Titanium dioxide was recently classified as a possible carcinogen to humans. Carcinogens have long been considered cancer promoting and should be avoided by all people.

The presence of these dangerous ingredients in some of the most popular prenatal vitamins is shocking and scary. Make sure you read and compare labels carefully and do your own research to find the safest prenatal  vitamin for before, during and after pregnancy.

Veggie Capsule versus Gel Capsule

Whether you’re a vegetarian or not, you may be surprised to learn that many prenatal vitamins (and supplements and other over the counter drugs in general) are made with gel capsules. Gel capsules are made with Gelatin; a substance derived the bones, tissues, organs and intestines of animals like cows, pigs and chickens.

If you’re a vegetarian or simply loathe the idea of gel caps (who could blame you!), look for a supplement that is made with vegetable capsules. Veggie capsules are often used only by premium brands and supplements due to the higher manufacturing cost. So look for brands that offer their products in veggie caps, in addition to a more appealing supplement, you’ll also know that their priority is quality not cost.

Not your first pregnancy or have a prenatal vitamin you swear by? Check the ingredients and compare all the prenatal vitamins available at your local pharmacy. Don’t rule out switching brands for a supplement that has the right effective ingredients, is free of dangerous ingredients, and doesn’t use dairy, gluten and any other unnecessary fillers.

Not sure where to get prenatal vitamins? Shop online or visit your local grocery store, pharmacy or natural health food store. Make sure you do your research in advance and take a list of what ingredients to avoid and which ingredients to look for.

Found the perfect prenatal vitamin? Share it with us!

Kelly Straus
Kelly Straus is a 35 year old working mom and wife, with over a decade of experience in marketing communications and the natural health sector. Kelly successfully balances a challenging career with the demands of her young family – a 4 year old son and 2 year old daughter (not to mention a very hairy Golden Retriever!). Kelly is passionate about educating and empowering women to take charge of their lives and their health. She has made a personal commitment to better manage her own health and help other women gain access to health information.

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