The importance of folate and vitamin B12 whilst trying to conceive

Getting enough vitamin B12 and folate (vitamin B9) is important at all stages of life, but when you are trying to conceive or actually pregnant you have even more reason to include these vitamins to help ensure your little one grows as healthy as possible.

Folate and vitamin B12 deficiencies show a higher rate of infertility, miscarriages, and birth defects. This is because these vitamins are essential for red blood cell production, DNA synthesis, and nervous system development. These vitamins are not naturally produced in our bodies so it is important to include sources or supplements into our daily diets.

B12 deficiency is common in individuals who do not eat meat or dairy, and also who have been on medications like metformin. This is why it is common to see some ladies with PCOS to be deficient in B12 due to the years of hormonal birth control pills, metformin, and even some ladies who omit from consuming dairy. Do not fear though, most prenatal vitamins contain B12 and if you have been focusing on increasing protein for blood sugar balance, you likely are increasing this vitamin naturally with the animal products you are eating. Eggs, meat, and fish are sources of B12.

If you have low energy, not having enough of these vitamins may be to blame, so considering your diet, medication, and supplement history can help inform what type of prenatal or supplement to take in addition to what you’ll receive from foods.

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