Want to know how to include Vitamin B in your pregnancy diet? Follow our tips on ensuring these essential prenatal nutrients are included in your meals!
Vitamin B is not just one essential vitamin but a whole group of essential nutrients for a healthy pregnancy diet! They help your body to release energy from food and keep your nervous system, skin and digestive system healthy – they’re also essential for promoting the healthy development of your baby’s nervous system and cell development (especially blood cells).
Vitamin B1 or Thiamin works with other B-group vitamins to help break down and release energy from food, as well as keeping nerves and muscle tissue healthy. It’s readily available in a wide choice of foods, which is fortunate as your body can’t store it and you need a top of Vitamin B1 every day. Thiamin is found in vegetables, eggs, wholegrain bread, fresh and dried fruit and some fortified cereals.
Vitamin B2 or Riboflavin helps release energy from carbs and keeps your skin, eyes and nervous system healthy. Found in milk, eggs, rice, mushrooms and fortified breakfast cereals it’s another vitamin that can’t be stored in your body.
Vitamin B3 or Niacin is important for keeping the nervous and digestives systems healthy as well as helping to produce energy from food. You should be able to get all the niacin you need for your healthy pregnancy diet from meat, fish, flour, eggs, milk and mushrooms.
Vitamin B6 or Pyridoxine promotes the storage of energy from protein and carbs and also helps form haemoglobin, which carries oxygen around the body. It’s vital for your baby’s developing brain and nervous system. Your daily needs for Vitamin B6 can be found in fish, poultry, pork, eggs, vegetables, milk, potatoes, beans and nuts.
Research has shown that extra Vitamin B6 can help with morning sickness and pregnancy nausea– although no-one has clarified exactly how it works! Check with your health professional before taking supplements as it’s possible to have too much Vitamin B6 in your pregnancy diet. Anaemia or depression may signal a Vitamin B deficiency.
Vitamin B12 is essential for healthy cell development in your baby, including the production of red blood cells and her developing nervous system. It also assists in processing folic acid. Useful sources include meat, fish, milk, cheese, eggs and fortified breakfast cereal. It’s not found fruit, vegetables and grains so if you’re following a vegan pregnancy diet you may need to take a Vitamin B12 supplement.
Folic Acid, known as folate in its natural form is part of the Vitamin B family. Read more about why folic acid is essential for pregnant women here.