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Prenatal Vitamins: A, C, & D

Vitamins A, C, and D

Vitamin A

Vitamin A is very important for the baby’s development, helping with development of the baby’s organs and organ systems. A toxicity of vitamin A (exact amount unknown) can be very harmful to the baby and can lead to congenital malformations. However, a deficiency in vitamin A can do the same. It’s important to note that there are 2 forms of vitamin A: preformed and provitamin A carotenoids. Preformed is found from animal sources, while carotenoids are found from fruits and vegetables. Vitamin A from animal sources can be toxic in high doses, however, toxicity from fruits and vegetables is highly unlikely.

Best Food Sources

Best food sources of vitamin A are well, everything. Best to get it from fruits and vegetables.


All values are based on daily serving size.

Thorne 5000 IU
SmartyPants 3000 IU
Kirkland 3500 IU
VitaFusion 4000 IU
NatureMade 2567 IU
Metagenics 5500 IU
Klaire 1500 mcg RAE

Needed during pregnancy – 770 mcg RAE

Our Take: Wait, what? Why do some present in IU and others mcg RAE? Apparently, it is very difficult to convert IU to mcg RAE because it depends on the amount and type of vitamin A. This is tough, and without doing much more research into vitamin A, it’s hard to tell. So, vitamin A is good, and these all have vitamin A.


Vitamin C

Vitamin C is important for development of the baby’s immune system, as well as all of the collagen formation.

Best Food Sources

Best food sources of vitamin C come from broccoli, cabbage, citrus fruits (especially oranges), and red peppers. Vitamin C is water soluble, so boiling could decrease the Vitamin C content.


All values are based on daily serving size.

Thorne 150 mg
SmartyPants 60 mg
Kirkland 85 mg
VitaFusion 30 mg
NatureMade 85 mg
Metagenics 500 mg
Klaire 100 mg

Needed during pregnancy – 85 mg

Our Take: 2000 mg is the upper limit of vitamin C. The gummy vitamins have the least amount of vitamin C, so additional vitamin C may be needed if taking those. When breastfeeding, you may need even more vitamin C (recommended 120 mg), it may be better to get that during pregnancy as well, so Thorne and Metagenics are the best choices in my opinion.


Vitamin D

Vitamin D is important for bone and teeth development of the baby, as well as their eyesight and skin. Vitamin D, calcium, and phosphorus all work together. It is important to note that vitamin D is a common deficiency during pregnancy. Deficiency in Vitamin D could lead to gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, and preterm birth. However, these have not been proven and are awaiting more research.

Best Food Sources

Best food sources include canned pink salmon and fortified foods

Best vegan sources include mushrooms and fortified food.

Sunlight is the absolute best source!


All values are based on daily serving size.

Thorne 1000 IU
SmartyPants 1000 IU
Kirkland 400 IU
VitaFusion 400 IU
NatureMade 1000 IU
Metagenics 1000 IU
Klaire 2000 IU

Needed during pregnancy – 600 IU

Our Take: Additional research is coming out, saying that the recommended amount of Vitamin D may be a lot lower than we think. The Linus Pauling Institute has come out to say it may be more like 2000 IU needed. There is no toxic level of Vitamin D, so get as much as you can. Klaire labs seems to have the edge here, but additional Vitamin D supplementation may be recommended as well.

We have two more vitamins to look at. They are Vitamin B6 and Vitamin B12.

These blogs will be posted on Tuesday & Friday throughout the month of July. Click here to subscribe so you don’t miss a post!

Click here to read the first blog of the series: Why should I take a prenatal?

Click here to read the second blog: Prenatal Vitamins: Overview

Click here to read the third blog: Prenatal Vitamins: Calcium and Iron

Click here to read the fourth blog: Prenatal Vitamins: Folate or Folic Acid

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