Supplements – Get Fit, Get Healthy Week 12

RULES:

1. If you haven’t yet, join the challenge here: GET FIT and GET HEALTHY
2. Every Saturday come back to The Art of Making a Babyand ShutterMama to read the tips on how to be fitter, healthier and more confident.
3. Weekly write a post about your progress, following the questionnaire below, take a self-portrait (optional) and link up with us.
4. Don’t forget to grab the GET FIT challenge button on the sidebar and display it proudly on your blog or GET FIT post.
5. Link your post with
Selfie Saturdays if you took your week’s self-portrait.

Vitamin and Mineral Supplements.

In the course of my preparation for pregnancy, one of the topics I did extensive research on was vitamin and mineral supplements.

We all know the importance of taking daily vitamins, especially if our diet leaves something to be desired. Now supplementation it’s not as simple as pop a pill each morning if you want to do it right.

There’s vitamin toxicity to pay attention to, minerals mashing together in all the wrong ways and negating each other, proper absorption, etc etc…

Here’re a few important fact everyone taking a supplement needs to know. This is especially useful to pregnant women or those TTCing, because having proper nutrients in your body is crucial:

There are certain minerals and foods that prevent absoption of others and vitamins that aid in absoption. You need to know that to get the maximum  out of your vitamins.

  • Pretty much anything interferes with iron absorption, so if your goal is to make sure you have plenty of iron in your stores, read the following:
              -do NOT mix calcium rich foods with iron rich foods, the same goes for supplements. Take iron and calcium supplement at least 2 hours apart.
              -do NOT drink tea after eating an iron rich food or taking an iron supplement.
              -the easiest way is to make sure you take an iron supplement completely separate with iron rich food
              – take vitamin C with iron for best absorption.If you’re a vegetarian, great sources of iron include: beans/lentils,some nuts, spinach, collard greens. Make sure to add some of those at every meal.
  • If you’re taking an iron supplement, make sure to take zinc and copper with it. Iron supplements interfere with the absorption of copper, which in turn is very closely related to zinc. So if you’re taking copper, you need to supplement it with zinc and visa versa. Since excess of one will give you a deficiency of the other So since iron interferes with copper and copper interferes with zinc, you need to take all three to make sure you’re even. In nature it’s done automatically, most foods high in iron are also high in zinc and copper. Never exceed 100% of DV an any of these minerals, because of it’s close relation and intricate balance system.
  • Calcium is best absorbed with Vitamins D. Most  Calcium supplements have vitamin D in it, just make sure it doesn’t exceed 50% DV, since vitamin D has a toxicity level.
  • It’s hard to get enough DHA in a pill form and it’s pretty expensive so look for a morning cereal that is a good source of Omega-3s and load up on some avocado and walnuts.
  • FOLIC ACID: TAKE IT!!!! Please please please, if you are of childbearing age and not infertile, please take a folic acid supplement, even if you’re not “planning” any more kids. Neural tube develops during the first 27 days of pregnancy, well before most women even know they’re pregnant. Folic acid can prevent most neural tube defects in a baby as long as you take it before and during the first month of pregnancy. Unless you’re like me and plan pregnancies that meticulously, the last thing you’d want is to get pregnant, not know it for a month and miss that 30 day window.

If you’re pregnant or planning to get pregnant:

NEVER EVER (unless advised by a doctor) exceed 100% of DV on any supplement. It’s hard because most over the counter prenatals stuff 200-300%DV of vitamins in it to appeal to the less educated women thinking they’re getting a better value. You are NOT! You should be getting plenty from food, so all you need to do is create a safety net.

Fat soluble vitamins get packed away in your fat thus making it possible to create a toxicity hardful to a fetus if you don’t know what you’re doing.

-Do not take vitamin A in any form but beta-carotene, that includes milk and animal products that have a decent amount of vitamin A in retinoid form. High doses of vitamin A causes birth defect and it’s easy to go over board if you’re a meat eater and take supplements
-Watch your vitamin D intake.
– Vitamin E has been linked with heart defects at birth. That is even vitamin E taken before pregnancy at as low as 2/3 of recommended daily value (DV). Now since, oil has lot of vitamin E, I suspect those finding might have had something to do with women who ate lots of oily foods that are already bad for the baby. But we can’t know for sure, and these are my personal speculations. I am not taking any vitamin E supplement, since we get plenty through oil use and nuts.

Folic acid is a MUST before you’re even pregnant.
Supplemental iron is helpful taken before pregnancy so that you go into it with your stores full of iron.
Unless you eat lots of fruits and veggies ( and I do mean lots and varied, making up most of your meals), you might not need to supplement A,C or K vitamins, since you get plenty from fruits and veggies.

Since everything tend to interfere with everything and you can’t take more than 100% of the certain type of vitamin..bla bla bla… I found the best way to make it easy is to buy each supplement separately and take them in batches:

iron+C+zinc+copper= 1st batch
Calcium+D= 2nd batch
Folic+ B+DHA+other= 3rd batch

So there you have it!

Now, my entry for week 12

1. Height: 5’11″, weight: 134 lb

2. Your fitness challenge(s) for this week: 30 minutes of pilates every other day + 30 minutes of cardio ( rollerblading, running, swimming or treadmill) every other day+20 sit-ups every hour for 8 hours on cardio days. Special exercises designed for pregnancy to increase flexibility (daily) + Kegels (twice daily). A total of about an hour or more of physical activity a day.

3. Your health challenge(s) for this week: My eating habits are close to perfect, however I could improve on my water intake. My goal will be 8 glasses of water daily + continue eating the way I do now. Start snacking more during the day to prepare for the first trimester of morning sickness.

4. How well did it go:
  • Fitness: It was awesome. I did everything I set out to do. Worked out daily. I feel it’s starting to become a habit, one that I will not want to give up. Yesterday, hubby and I even did both strength and cardio and abs in one day, even though we’re supposed to do cardio/strength every other day.
  • Water: I’m back to my KleenKanteen bottle and being hydrated.
  • Food:Food intake was perfect. Nothing to complain about.
    5. Failures and slip-ups: Can’t say anything here. I’m getting in the groove and getting stronger.

6. Weekly challenge wisdom: It’s true that they say it takes a while to form a habit, but once that habit forms it becomes a joy to do the most mundane things.
 
7. Advice to fellow GET FIT members
: Stick with it! It will get better But if you give up now, it’ll NEVER get better. You will always start and stop and start and stop and get nowhere, or give up and continue living unhealthy and overweight.

8. Self Portrait: Magic Tricks
kind of creepy, huh?

 

{for more shots, go to my photography blog, Selfie Magic}

 


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10 Comments

  • Reply
    Captivus
    April 23, 2011 at 2:09 PM

    So trippy!!! And cool!

  • Reply
    Kim
    April 23, 2011 at 2:16 PM

    Love the selfie! You made me wait so long. haha.

  • Reply
    PS
    April 23, 2011 at 8:36 PM

    Thanks again for the supplement info, Elena! I went to my natural pharmacy, found all the Solgar individual ones I need so I am checking one more thing off my pre TTC list!

  • Reply
    aiko
    July 18, 2011 at 10:00 AM

    There are lots of certain supplements to be taken by a woman that should corresponds to her health and situation.

  • Reply
    Anon.
    June 12, 2012 at 6:26 PM

    Where are your references for all the vitamin supplement info?

  • Reply
    sasha
    August 8, 2012 at 3:29 PM

    One line you wrote caught my eye. But then you only wrote one line on it 😛
    can you explain — “Watch your vitamin D intake.”

    Tell me more. Is it bad? Are you saying, dont take more? or are you saying make sure you have enough? how much is enough? what happens if you take more? too many questions…

    Tell tell. Do tell.

    By the way, you write a lovely blog!

    • Reply
      Elena @The Art of Making a Baby
      August 8, 2012 at 6:21 PM

      Vitamin D has a toxicity level, since it’s fat soluble, so by saying watch it, I mean don’t go crazy with it. You can Google what the maximum RDA for it is, since I don’t remember off hand and make sure not to exceed that from foods and supplements. (D from sunshine is ok, though)

  • Reply
    cyndee
    September 18, 2013 at 1:49 PM

    I am a vet tech and we have been trying to get pregnant for about 7 months. We have plans A,B,C and D. We are plan B for one more month. My Doctor advised me not to do xrays but the Vet I work for doesn’t understand why. Not sure if our machine is even up to date or has been checked, it is over 30 yrs old. What do you advise on this matter??? Thanks, Cyndee

    • Reply
      Elena @The Art of Making a Baby
      September 23, 2013 at 2:48 PM

      I would not do x-rays while pregnant if you can avoid it. There is plenty of information on that out there. Be sure to look it up and present it to your employer.

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