Getting healthy for Operation Baby – supplements

When I saw my GP to green light Operation Baby we discussed my being in optimum health as the most important thing to focus on before TTC. In my mind there are 3 parts to that:

  1. Lose weight via. a healthy balanced diet (current BMI 31 – need to get to 25)
  2. Make sure I’m getting all the vitamins & minerals I need up to optimal baby-making levels
  3. Relax! Try to keep stress levels down

Vitamin containers.jpgPoint 1 is going to be discussed on this blog at length since losing weight is going to be the hardest and take the longest, so I thought I’d start off with a post about the first active (and quickest!) step I’ve taken… choosing my vitamin supplements…

After reading @CrazyStorkLady‘s witty post about going a bit crazy in the pregnancy isle at the chemists (pharmageddon! Lol!) I steeled myself to be focused and purposeful in choosing my vitamins – research online first, make a plan, get to pharmacy, in and out quickly no faffing about looking at other stuff.

So I dutifully perused TTC blogs, articles on women’s health websites, and manufacturers’ pages extolling the wonders of their preconception and pregnancy vitamins. I umm’d and ah’d and finally picked one. Part one of my plan completed I headed off to Boots.

So I headed in and with laser focus went straight to the vitamin section and… they didn’t have my painstakingly carefully selected choice! Now I’d have to decide all over again with all these options in front of me, including some I hadn’t come across during my internet research.

After half an hour (OK, I’ll be honest, 40-45 minutes) of comparing and mind changing I ended up not opting for a specialist pre-pregnancy product after all. The prices!!! It seems that the word “pregnancy” has a similar effect to the word “wedding” – as soon as you put it in front of a product the price shoots up!

After all my comparing I decided that the only thing most normal daily multivitamins are missing is the 400 micrograms on folic acid (and possibly the optimal levels of Vitamin D, iron and zinc depending on brand), and the only “potentially harmful” thing they include is Vitamin A. As I’m around 6 months from actually trying to introduce sperm to egg I decided that, at this point, Vitamin A wasn’t going to do me any harm; and it’s much simpler to get the folic acid separately. So I opted for a multivitamin, folic acid, and cod liver oil (to get in some omega 3 and to make use of the 3 for 2 offer 🙂 ). I already get Vitamin D + calcium on prescription from my GP as I had a Vitamin D deficiency (this is England, most people do!). When I switch to actively TTC then I may re-evaluate these choices, but for now I think this’ll work.

A note on brand – after comparing what was on offer I decided to go with Boots’ own brand vitamins. Not only were they a lot cheaper; they also had higher levels of some of the key vitamins I was looking for than some of the big name brands.

Multivitamin, folic acid, and cod liver oil
Multivitamin, folic acid, and cod liver oil

So I went home and happily filled my pill box for the week ahead including my new additions with pride, and I took my first doses last night. I was pleased that the multivitamin tablet isn’t HUGE, and I’m really surprised that the highly exhalted folic acid tablet is so small! I guess they do say good things come in small packages…

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4 thoughts on “Getting healthy for Operation Baby – supplements

  1. I have that folic acid too and I was SO happy that it was tiny when opened it! Glad you managed not to go as nuts as me. Have to say the three for two offer made things infinitely harder for me too. Grrrr. The point about the wedding tax made me laugh- you’re totally right there def seems to be a pregnancy tax at play too. Good luck with it and with the weight loss. As for relaxing, well I’m not going to say ‘just relax’ cause I know that just makes it harder! X

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  2. I have Pregnacare – I think it covers most of the things you need to take, and it was cheap on Amazon! I have it on subscribe and save. When we were doing IVF I took Boots folic acid (I’m in the uk too!).

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    1. Thanks for commenting. I had looked at Pregnacare but I came across some reviews where some people had commented that the pills were huge, and that it made them feel nauseous or have diarrhoea*. Since I’m not actively TTC yet I decided to give it a miss for now and stick with “regular” vitamins. But the idea of doing a subscribe and save via Amazon in the future is a good one… I hadn’t thought of that!

      (*Disclaimer: this is just anecdotes from what I’ve seen, I can’t confirm or deny accuracy as I’ve not used the product!)

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