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When to take iron in pregnancy?

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

During pregnancy, it is expected that you have to take a vitamin or mineral supplement because the requirements of the baby’s development will demand a more significant contribution of these elements. If you do not have the necessary amount, it could be reflected in your state of health and even affect the fetus. In addition to folic acid, iron is another component most specified during pregnancy since it tends to decrease with the advancement of the weeks gradually. However, it also increases your body’s ability to absorb it.

Surely you have heard about the importance of iron for the development of the fetus, but if you ask yourself: when to take iron in pregnancy? In this FastlyHealarticle, you can discover the answer in detail.

Iron during pregnancy

Iron is one of the most critical components of the body since it is essential for the production of hemoglobin, proteins such as myoglobin and collagen, as well as certain enzymes; therefore, it keeps your immune system in good condition, intervenes in the transport of oxygen throughout the body and in the formation of bone structure and other tissues.

On the other hand, during pregnancy, iron acquires more functions. It thus increases the demand for it because your blood circulation is much higher than usual, so more hemoglobin production is needed.

Iron is mainly needed to keep the cells involved with the fetus well-oxygenated and that will allow its proper development; it also intervenes in nutrition and the formation of its immune system. While for you, it is essential to recover after delivery in case of bleeding and those above.

The level of iron in your body must be adequate. Otherwise, it can have consequences on your health and cause you to have a premature birth or that your baby is born with low weight, with a high risk of mortality. For this reason, you should go to the doctor to keep track of this mineral.

When to take iron in pregnancy?

Although the type of diet you eat is essential for you to acquire enough iron, under normal conditions, as gestation progresses, the level of this mineral in your body decreases since its absorption is more significant and faster, being necessary in many cases for its administration in supplements.

To answer your question about when to take iron during pregnancy, you have to know that not all cases are the same and that the time and amount you can take will be determined by your doctor depending on the results of your blood test and control—a ride. You must not self-medicate since an excess of iron could cause other conditions, such as diabetes or hypertension.

Thus, the doctor may tell you to take iron and other vitamins or minerals if you have had low levels since the beginning of pregnancy, and the dose will depend on whether you have been able to raise the blood level with the first recommendations or not.

In general, terms, if your body has an adequate amount of iron at the beginning of pregnancy, the amount acquired from food or a minor vitamin supplement is usually sufficient; While, for the second or third trimester, the demand for this mineral increases, approximately you would need 30 mg of iron per day, being insufficient with the diet. The doctor will indicate the treatment that best suits your condition.

Although there are critical points in which there is mostly an iron deficiency, this can be present at any time during pregnancy, which is why a periodic review with the specialist is necessary. If you develop anemia, the recommended dose will not be enough, and you will have to take another treatment. We will show you some tips to prevent anemia in pregnancy in the following article.

On the other hand, your doctor may recommend that you continue taking the iron supplement for up to three months after the baby is born for your body to replace this mineral that was used during pregnancy and childbirth.

How to take iron in pregnancy?

Many foods contain high amounts of iron; if you follow a balanced diet, you can acquire enough iron; some of the rich sources of this mineral are red meat, poultry, fish, vegetables, legumes, and nuts. For better absorption, it is recommended that you include foods rich in vitamin C.

On the other hand, if you are taking an iron supplement, you must consider some points at the time of intake. One of them is that you do it on an empty stomach, at least one hour before eating; it is ideal for your body to fully acquire this mineral, since when taken with meals, it can reduce its effect and absorption, making it insufficient.

However, taking iron during pregnancy on an empty stomach can cause you a series of adverse effects, so you could choose to ingest it after eating for a minimum of 3 hours. If you choose this option, it is also recommended that you have not consumed milk or its derivatives, whole foods or foods with a lot of fiber, energy drinks, sodas, or caffeine, and other foods that prevent the correct absorption of iron. Also, there must be a difference of at least an hour if you take other medications or calcium supplements.

Side Effects of Taking Iron During Pregnancy

It is essential that in case of any discomfort that you present while taking iron during pregnancy, you let the specialist know who follows your pregnancy control; However, after taking iron supplements, you will likely develop some common reactions in your body, mainly:

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to When to take iron in pregnancy? We recommend that you enter our Pregnancy and baby health category .

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