The Best Prenatal Vitamins a Dietitian Recommends

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The 11 Best Prenatal Vitamins of 2022

Byrdie / Chloe Jeong

Whether you're actively trying to conceive or are just beginning to think about having a baby, it is important to ensure you're getting enough nutrients. Having optimal levels of folate, iron, calcium, vitamin D, B Vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids is critical for a baby’s development and keeping you feeling good during pregnancy.

Final Verdict

Derived from whole food sources, the Innate Response Baby & Me Multivitamin helps support a healthy pregnancy and developing child, making it our top choice. For a wallet-friendly option, go with The Honest Company Prenatal Once Daily, which is made with ginger and digestive enzymes, making it an easier pill to swallow—literally.

For this reason, even those with the best diets will benefit from incorporating a prenatal vitamin into their routines. And of course, for those with morning sickness or certain cravings, prenatal vitamins will help keep your nutrient needs covered. Some prenatal products will include important nutrients like DHA or choline, but others might not include it and may be paired with additional supplements. As always, speak with your physician about which prenatal vitamin is right for you.

What to Look for in a Prenatal Vitamin

Folic acid

One of the most important ingredients to look for in a prenatal vitamin is folic acid. Folic acid is necessary for forming the baby’s neural tube and proper intake can prevent brain and spine defects. Once you start thinking about having a baby, it is important to begin taking at least 400 mcg of folic acid and increase it to 600 mcg per day once pregnant.

Other important nutrients

Vitamin D, calcium, choline, DHA, iron, and vitamin C are all super important nutrients that you want in a prenatal. Iron supports the increase in blood volume during pregnancy and DHA helps support the baby’s brain development. Do your best when shopping for a prenatal, you may have to combine supplements which is totally fine.

Interested in adding a prenatal vitamin to your daily routine? Keep scrolling to discover the best prenatal vitamins available right now. 

Best Overall: Innate Response Baby & Me Multivitamin

4.5
Innate Response Baby & Me
What We Like
  • Tested for 125+ herbicides and pesticides

  • Designed to be taken whenever and without food

  • Vitamins derived from whole food sources

What We Don't Like
  • No DHA included

A whole foods-based supplement that's free from endocrine-disrupting herbicides and pesticides? Sign us up! The Baby & Me supplement is a complete prenatal that can be used after birth as well—it's designed to support a healthy pregnancy and developing child with methylated B vitamins, iron, and more. However, this supplement doesn't include DHA, so additional supplementation might be necessary.

Type: tablet | Age Range: Adult 18+ | Dosage: 2 tablets/day | Certified: Glyphosate residue free, non-GMO, kosher, B-corporation

Runner-Up, Best Overall: Designs for Health Prenatal Pro

Designs for Health Prenatal Pro
What We Like
  • Uses the most bioavailable forms of nutrients 

  • Soy, gluten, and dairy-free

  • Capsules are easy to swallow

What We Don't Like
  • Serving size is 4 capsules

Prenatal Pro is a comprehensive formula that features high-quality nutrients. According to the brand, Designs for Health is trusted by more than 50,000 physicians so you know you're in good hands. Featuring activated forms of vitamins and minerals, this supplement is designed for easy absorption. One thing to note is that the serving size for this product is four capsules, so if you have a hard time swallowing pills, this might not be an ideal choice for you.

Type: Capsule | Age Range: Adult 18+ | Dosage: 4 capsules/day | Certified: Non-GMO, gluten-free

Best Budget: The Honest Company Prenatal Once Daily

The Honest Company Prenatal Once Daily
What We Like
  • Contains ingredients to help aid digestion 

  • Reviewed by dietitians and doctors

  • Easy to swallow

What We Don't Like
  • No DHA included

The Honest Company’s Once Daily offers a balanced combination of vitamins and minerals to support the growing nutritional needs during pregnancy. Reviewed by dietitians and doctors, The Honest Company’s prenatal supplement ticks off many boxes for critical vitamins and minerals. For those who may have a hard time with digestion, this product is formulated with organic ginger, and enzymes from papaya, pineapple, and kiwi, as well as a naturally derived sweet vanilla coating (which makes taking them a bit easier). One 30-day supply is priced at less than $20—a score for your wallet without sacrificing quality. 

Type: Tablet | Age Range: Adult 18+ | Dosage: 1 tablet/day | Certified: Non-GMO

Best Drugstore: Nature Made Prenatal Multi + DHA

Nature Made
What We Like
  • Includes 200 mg of DHA

  • Less than $20 for a 110-day supply

  • Good value

What We Don't Like
  • Not for vegans or vegetarians 

Luckily, you don't have to search far and wide to find a solid prenatal. Nature Made’s Prenatal Multivitamin can be found at most drugstores and is an excellent affordable option. Each capsule contains DHA, folic acid, iron, and many other vitamins (A, B, C, D, E, and K) to ensure you get everything you need in one convenient pill.

Type: Capsule | Age Range: Adult 18+ | Dosage: 1 capsule/day | Certified: USP-verified

Best for Vegans: Mama Bird AM/PM Prenatal

Mama Bird AM PM Prenatal
What We Like
  • Includes 300 mg of choline

  • Uses lab-certified ingredients

  • Free of common allergens

What We Don't Like
  • Pricey

Vegans, rejoice! Mama Bird’s AM/PM Prenatal Multi+ has your back. This vegan product is made with organic herbs, probiotics, a digestive enzyme blend, methylated vitamins, chelated minerals, and 300 milligrams of choline (which can be difficult for vegans to consume, as animal products are the richest source of choline). This product is free of soy, yeast, nuts, sugars, artificial flavors, dairy, and of course, GMOs. We also love that Mama Bird opts for certification by a third-party ISO/IEC 17025 lab to support the active ingredient concentration, heavy metals concentrations, and purity.

Type: Caplets | Age Range: Adult 18+ | Dosage: 2 caplets/day | Certified: Non-GMO, vegan

Best Single-Serving: One A Day Women's Prenatal 1

One A Day Women's Prenatal 1
What We Like
  • Only one softgel per day

  • Includes EPA and DHA

  • Good value

What We Don't Like
  • Lacks choline

Taking multiple tablets or supplements every day can be exhausting, which is why we like One A Day Women's Prenatal 1 Multivitamin. One softgel provides important nutrients like folic acid, calcium, vitamin D, and iron, as well as DHA. This product is also free of artificial sweeteners, artificial flavors, wheat, and dairy. Also nice: A 90-day supply is priced at around $30, which is a steal at about $10 per month. FYI, this supplement lacks choline, so additional supplementation may be necessary.

Type: Softgel | Age Range: Adult 18+ | Dosage: 1 softgel/day | Certified: N/A

Best for Nausea: Garden of Life Vitamin Code Raw Prenatal

Garden of Life Vitamin Code Raw Prenatal
What We Like
  • Capsules can be mixed with food

  • Contains ingredients that support digestion

  • Can be taken with or without food

What We Don't Like
  • Lacks choline and DHA

Morning sickness is no fun, and constantly feeling waves of nausea makes it extra difficult to make sure you're eating well. Vitamin Code includes a blend of probiotics and enzymes to support healthy digestion as well as plenty of vitamins and minerals. The serving size for this product is three capsules, and while they may be taken together or throughout the day (with or without food), those who are sensitive to swallowing pills can also open the capsules and mix the contents with water or juice. DHA and choline are not included in this product so you may need to add an additional supplement.

Type: Capsule | Age Range: Adult 18+ | Dosage: 3 capsule/day | Certified: Non-GMO, NSF gluten-free, B-Corporation

Best Organic: Garden of Life mykind Organics Prenatal Vitamins

Garden of Life mykind Organics Prenatal
What We Like
  • One tablet per serving

  • Contains ingredients for nausea

  • Gentle on the stomach

What We Don't Like
  • Pricer than other prenatal options

Taking an organic prenatal isn't necessary, but opting for organic ingredients is definitely a nice bonus. Garden of Life’s myKind Prenatal vitamin is certified organic by the USDA and its ingredients are derived from an organic food blend. Be advised, though, that this product is lower in iron than some other prenatal vitamins and doesn't contain choline, so you may need to add other supplements. Additionally, given the lower amount of iron, this product may actually be ideal for those who struggle with constipation—however, it's important to make sure your iron needs are met through diet by speaking with your physician. 

Type: Tablet | Age Range: Adult 18+ | Dosage: 1 tablet/day | Certified: USDA organic, NSF gluten-free, vegan, kosher, non-GMO

Best Gummy: SmartyPants Organic Prenatal Vitamins

SmartyPants Organic Prenatal Vitamins
What We Like
  • Free of common allergens

  • Includes EPA and DHA

  • Great taste

What We Don't Like
  • Lacks calcium and iron 

If swallowing capsules or tablets isn't your thing, Smarty Pants Prenatal Formula Daily Gummy Multivitamin is a great option. Its formula contains methylated folate, choline, EPA and DHA, and vitamin D. A few notes on this product: Iron and calcium are both not included, so they'll need to be added. Also, one serving of these gummies also contains 6 grams of added sugar, so if you've been instructed to watch your sugar intake during pregnancy, this might not be the best option for you.

Type: Gummy | Age Range: Adult 18+ | Dosage: 4 gummies/day | Certified: Non-GMO

Best With DHA: Ritual Essential Prenatal

5
Ritual Prenatal
What We Like
  • Naturally sourced ingredients

  • Delayed-release capsule design

  • Lemon-scented

What We Don't Like
  • Must be part of the subscription service 

Ritual’s Essential Prenatal features key nutrients in a delayed-release capsule for optimal absorption. We love that these vegan capsules contain nutrients like methylated folate, choline, iodine, vitamin D, and 350 milligrams of DHA. As a bonus, Ritual’s Essential Prenatal is Made Traceable™ with a visible supply chain so you know what you’re putting in your body. Ritual’s vitamins are part of a monthly subscription service, if you are not satisfied with your product there is a 30-day money-back guarantee. 

Type: Capsule | Age Range: Adult 18+ | Dosage: 2 capsules/day | Certified: Non-GMO

What Our Editors Say

"I genuinely enjoyed taking these vitamins for months, which is saying a lot because I'm not a fan of swallowing pills. I love that they're vegan because so many multivitamins out there are not friendly for people with dietary restrictions. My favorite part, though, is that they smell and taste minty fresh. The only reason I'm not taking them now is that I've switched to a prenatal, but once I'm off those, these will again become part of my daily ritual—pun intended." Jessica Mahgerefteh, Commerce Editorial Director

Best for Allergies: Pure Encapsulations PreNatal Nutrients

Pure Encapsulations PreNatal Nutrients
What We Like
  • Safe for vegetarians

  • Free of common allergens

  • Product has undergone extensive testing

What We Don't Like
  • Has a distinct odor/taste

Pure Encapsulations products are made with premium ingredients sourced from trusted suppliers and guided by their nutritional experts The brand takes extra care in testing to verify each product's potency and purity. This product, in particular, is great for those with allergies or intolerances, as it's free of wheat, eggs, tree nuts, peanuts, gluten, artificial colors, flavors and sweeteners, coatings and shellacs, GMOs, and unnecessary binders, fillers, and preservatives.

Type: Capsule | Age Range: Adult 18+ | Dosage: 2 capsules/day | Certified: Non-GMO, gluten-free

Final Verdict

Innate Response Formulas Baby & Me Multivitamin is our top pick for prenatal vitamins. One of a few brands that certify their products are free of glyphosate, we appreciate the focus on clean, safe ingredients. Though this product lacks DHA, it does contain many important vitamins and minerals during pregnancy so all you might need to add is a DHA supplement.

Meet the Expert

Dr. Malinda Lee is an ob-gyn and fertility specialist at Spring Fertility's Mountain View and Sunnyvale offices.

FAQ
  • What are the benefits of prenatal vitamins?

    Prenatal vitamins are important regardless of whether or not you have an optimal diet. During pregnancy, your needs increase and it's important to be properly nourished to support your own health and the health of your developing baby. Of course, supplements are meant to be an addition to an adequate diet, so it's still important to eat consciously and as well as you're able to during pregnancy.

  • When should you start taking a prenatal vitamin?

    “Any time you are contemplating pregnancy or could be pregnant, start taking a prenatal vitamin once a day,” suggests Lee. “Generally, we recommend taking a prenatal starting at least one month before conception, and ideally three months [before].” 

  • How often should you take prenatal vitamins?

    Prenatal vitamins should be taken daily throughout pregnancy and can even be taken postpartum. If you need additional nutrients, your doctor might recommend added supplements or increasing the frequency of consumption.

  • Are prenatal vitamins safe?

    In general, prenatal vitamins are safe. However, you should always discuss a new supplement with your physician. Some supplements may contain added ingredients like herbs or botanicals which may not be appropriate for everyone. Keep in mind, though, that simple ingredient lists are likely best during pregnancy.

  • What are the potential side effects of a prenatal vitamin?

    Prenatal vitamins can sometimes cause nausea and constipation due to iron, which can be hard on the stomach. “Women experiencing these side effects can try to manage these symptoms with natural remedies like ginger and lemon, plenty of hydration, over-the-counter stool softeners, or, if severe, talk to their doctor,” says Lee.

Why Trust Byrdie

As a registered dietitian, Sydney Greene takes supplement recommendations seriously. Every product has been researched and vetted by her against clinical research, product reviews, and third-party testing websites. These are products she would not only feel comfortable recommending to her clients but she would take them herself if needed.

According to our Diversity Pledge, 15% of products in our newly-published market roundups will feature Black-owned and/or Black-founded brands. At the time of publishing, we were not able to find any prenatal vitamins from a Black-owned and/or Black-founded business. If you know of one we should consider, please email us at contact@byrdie.com and we will evaluate the product ASAP.

Article Sources
Byrdie takes every opportunity to use high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial guidelines to learn more about how we keep our content accurate, reliable and trustworthy.
  1. CDC. Folic acid. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

  2. Institute of Medicine. Food and Nutrition Board. Dietary Reference Intakes: Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Vitamin B12, Pantothenic Acid, Biotin, and Choline. Washington, DC: National Academy Press

  3. Choline. Linus Pauling Institute.

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