Prenatal DHA: Guide to Nutriton & Supplements (Step-by-Step!)

What is Prenatal DHA?

Pregnant Woman

DHA is one of those Omega-3 “good fats” everyone keeps talking about.

It’s obvious prenatal vitamins have huge benefits for pregnancy…

…but few know the potential harms of taking Prenatal DHA from the wrong source!

Stick with me, and at the end of this article, you’ll know more about healthy pregnancy vitamins than 99% of the population…

Pregnancy Meme
My body hurts.

Just give me the quick summary.

The TL;DR Summary

(TL;DR = “Too Long; Didn’t Read”)

  1. DHA is a critical component of human brains, especially in developing babies.
  2. Most women (especially vegetarians & vegans) don’t get enough DHA during pregnancy.
  3. For Pregnancy, most vitamins don’t contain enough DHA. Adding a DHA supplement is necessary.
  4. Algae Oil is a safer alternative to fish oil. Plus it’s plant-based, making it a 100% vegetarian and vegan pregnancy vitamin.
  5. We sell Diet Standards Vegan Prenatal DHA.

Why do we think ours is the best dha supplement?

  • 100% Vegan DHA
  • Made in the United States from high quality Algae Oil
  • Made in an FDA Registered, NSF Certified Facility
  • We 3rd party lab test every batch
  • We take every step possible to be the safest & best option for your little one

– Here’s where to Buy Diet Standards Supplements…

You can find Diet Standards DHA Prenatal on Amazon


Diet Standards
Amazon


Now you’ve got the basics. Let’s dig into the details…

Did you know there’s something YOU can do to help your baby’s brain growth?

Most women have no idea that it’s even possible to alter brain development through nutrition.

They’re happy feeding themselves alcohol and cigarettes while popping dollar store vitamins.

Brain Development in Babies with Prenatal DHA Supplementation

They ignore the last 150-years of scientific research and pretend nutrition has no place in human growth and development.

They’re the same women who would happily give their family rickets and scurvy by feeding them nothing but microwave meals and candy bars.

(Yes, this happens, and it’s sick.)

You’re NOT one of those women.

You care about your baby’s health above everything, even your own wellbeing.

It’s the most passionate, selfless form of love.

You’ll do anything you can to keep them healthy.

After all, that’s why you’re here, researching the best pregnancy vitamins and trying to find the best vegan dha prenatal supplement you possibly can.

So, the first step in maternity nutrition is simple.

Realize that you CAN change the outcome. What you put in your body has a direct effect on your child’s development.

DHA Pregnancy Softgels
One small pill makes a big difference…

Nutrition is complex, so it’s often easy to get overwhelmed. But complex doesn’t mean magical.

The human body needs certain vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids to function and grow.

So if you found out there was something you could take to improve your baby’s health, would you do it?

Why add Vegan DHA to your Existing Pregnancy Vitamins?

Because it helps baby’s brain development.

Don’t believe hype or hear-say on this.

We took a deep dive into the science of omega 3 supplements and how they work for pregnancy…

The most compelling information is a rat study by Lin and Salem(2). In this experiment, Docosahexaenoic Acid accrued preferentially in the brain and central nervous system over time.

Polyunsaturated Fatty Acid (PUFA) Intake During Pregnancy
Images from: Whole body distribution of deuterated linoleic and a-linolenic acids and their metabolites in the rat. Red highlights are mine. As you can see, polyunsaturated fatty acids are critical for healthy baby development during pregnancy.

Another study of women in an Icelandic fishing community showed that “Infant size at birth (a positive marker of infant health) increased with fish consumption, especially for women in the lower quartiles of consumption.”(6

In one randomized controlled trial by Olsen et al, healthy Danish women were either given a fish oil supplement (fish group) or an olive oil supplement (control group). Pregnancies in the fish group were 4.0 days longer and resulted in a birthweight that was 107g higher.(8)

Healthy Baby
I’d like to thank my trainer for taking on a baby as a client.

I’d like to thank my mother for proper nutrition during pregnancy…”

Side Effects of Consumption – Increased Cognitive and Behavioral Performance

“The DHA obtained through the consumption of polyunsaturated fatty acids is positively associated with cognitive and behavioral performance.[6] In addition Docosahexaenoic Acid is vital for the grey matter structure of the human brain, as well as retinal stimulation and neurotransmission.[1]

Docosahexaenoic Acid Chemical Structure

Prenatal DHA is critical for neurological development. (Rewards Points if you’re already taking it!)

But wait. One quick thing…

There’s a difference between taking the best dha supplement and any old fish oil product. Even if you’re not a vegan, we recommend sticking to vegan dha (especially during pregnancy).

You can find Diet Standards Vegan DHA Prenatals on Amazon:


Diet Standards Pregnancy Supplement
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Long-Chain Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (aka “DHA for Pregnancy”)? Is Healthy Food Enough?

No.

It’s a common misconception that you can have a perfect diet just by ea ting some fruits and vegetables now and then.

The fact is: You need to take Prenatal DHA for Pregnancy!

This goes especially for pregnant women, and vegetarians/vegans in particular. Supplementing with Omega 3 is critical here!

Thank your lucky stars we have some options here. Let’s talk about the best prenatal options.

But order to understand why, let’s first look at the dietary fats involved in infant health.

Dietary fats are divided into 3 categories

  1. Saturated Fats
  2. Mono-Unsaturated Fats
  3. Poly-Unsaturated Fats

Let’s talk Polyunsaturated Fat…

Polyunsaturated Fatty Acid Intake during Vegan Pregnancy

You’ll often hear people talk about the Omega 3 to Omega 6 balance, which is a ratio between the two of them. That’s because each Polyunsaturated Fatty Acid has a different role in the body.

Omega 3 vs Omega 6 – Understanding Omega-3 Oil and Pregnancy

An oversimplification is to say that Omega-6’s are “Pro-Inflammatory” and Omega-3’s are “Anti-Inflammatory”. (As if the body has some sort of rewards program for eating specific foods. As if!) The actual mechanisms in the human body are more complicated than this.

Each molecule of oil is so important for specific purposes that our bodies can actually morph one molecule of omega-3 oil into another. This is called “Desaturation” and “Elongation”. The chart below shows the biological reactions involved in changing Omega 3 molecules:

Essential Fatty Acid Desaturation and Elongation in Pregnancy and Prenatal Dietary Supplements

Now that’s all well and good, but there are side effects of eating the wrong Omega 3 Oil.

The body is inefficient at conversion.

(So if you’re on Santa’s babylist for a special delivery this year, this matters double. If you’re a vegetarian or vegan, this matters triple.)

Healthy Food Alone is Not Enough – Vegans NEED to Supplement

For Example: People often recommend you ea t Flaxseed Oil for it’s Omega 3 content. Problem is, studies show only 1% to 9% of that oil can be converted into Docosahexaenoic Acid.(5It’s what scientists call a “rate limiting step”.

The best way to get Docosahexaenoic acid is by eating it directly. Unfortunately there are not a whole lot of foods high in this critical nutrient!

There are often no alerts of deficiency either.

(You won’t feel it if you’re not getting enough.)

How much DHA to intake while pregnant? (Rewards Points if you Know the Answer…)

The National Institutes of Health recommends pregnant and lactating women get “300mg per day”.(12)

Now here’s the problem:

Consumption of DHA and EPA from foods contributes a very small amount to total daily omega-3 intakes.

(Estimated at 40 mg in children and teens and about 90 mg in adults.) (NIH Data)

Average intake is well below the optimal requirements during pregnancy.

Many Pregnancy Vitamins don’t contain enough (or any) Prenatal DHA. In most cases, additional supplementation is necessary.

(We also recommend wearing ComproGear Compression Socks to help with the natural leg swelling that accompanies pregnancy.)

Key Point: You’re probably not getting enough DHA! It’s critical to take the best dha supplement you can find.

Notes:

Why is Omega 3 Algae Oil better than Fish Oil?

Algae makes the best dha for pregnancy.

Now that’s a bold claim, so here’s the reason described in one word:

Clean

We could blather on and on about how horrible commercial fishing is and how disgusting gelatin products are, but truth be told there is only one reason you should take algal oil over fish oil:

Mercury in Fish Oil vs Algae Oil Supplements
(Source: Photo from Wikipedia “Mercury in Fish”)

Where is algae oil in the above picture? Nowhere.

Algae Oil vs Fish Oil

Algae Oil vs Fish Oil for Pregnancy Supplements

Algae is the primary producer and does not collect heavy metals and toxins the way predators like fish do. Algae Oil is grown in a clean environment separated from pollution and runoff.

That’s why 3rd party lab tests consistently show Diet Standards is the cleanest DHA Prenatals money can buy. Forget fish. Algae makes the Best Omega 3 Supplement. (Honest)


Diet Standards Vegan Pregnancy Supplement
Buy Now at Amazon

How Much DHA to Take During Pregnancy?

  1. Consume 300mg (or more) of an Omega 3 DHA Supplement for Pregnancy like Diet Standards Vegan Pregnancy Supplement.

Healthy Pregnancy Ideas

Make note of the following points:

  • Follow your doctor’s pregnancy recommendations.
  • Supplement with at least 300mg Prenatal DHA and 500mg ALA per day
  • Eat 2 servings of low-mercury fish each week. (Salmon, Oyster, Tilapia, Hake, Sardine, Anchovies, Pollock, Herring, Catfish). If you’re a vegan, make sure to account for this using supplements.
  • Follow the National Institutes of Health general recommendations for nutrition during pregnancy
  • Eat a wide variety of nutrient-dense foods. Fruits, Vegetables, Lean Meats, Fats, etc. Aim for moderation and variety.
  • Do not avoid any specific food groups unless you have a diagnosed medical condition precluding you from eating them.
  • Ea t enough calories. Use a calorie calculator to calculate your caloric expenditure. Then add enough extra calories to cover your baby’s development.
  • Eat 2.2 grams of protein per kilogram of lean body mass. (1 gram per pound of bodyweight).
  • Avoid foods and drugs that should not be eaten/taken during pregnancy. These include, but are not limited to: Green Tea, Cigarettes, Excess Caffeine, Alcohol, etc…

(Side Note: Serious rewards points if you can remember all that.)

Prenatal Vitamins Joke
There’s just one catch…

Finding the Best DHA Supplement for Pregnancy (Hint: Not All Pregnancy Vitamins are Created Equal)

When we started looking at what’s on the market today, it made us sick.

  • Cheap prenatals with little to no Omega 3s
  • Low quality fish products that smelled like sewage
  • Unscrupulous manufacturers
  • Annoying rewards points and rewards programs
  • Less than honest marketing
  • Product fillers causing side effects
  • Phony awards and fake reviews
  • Selling much less than 180 count in each bottle

and…

  • Scant options for vegetarians and vegans

That’s why we launched Diet Standards Prenatal DHA.

Our goal was to make the best dha supplement for pregnancy.

(A Vegan DHA vitamin for women who want only the very best for their growing baby.)

We could go on and on about how it’s 100% Vegan and Made in the United Stated from the highest quality Algae Oil…

…or how it’s free from most common allergens…

…or how we 3rd party lab test every batch, so you always know exactly what’s inside the bottle.

The important thing is:

We’ve taken every step possible to produce
the best dha supplement for pregnancy

If you’re looking for the cheapest option, we don’t have it.

But if you demand the best for your baby, this is it.

Want to Buy a Bottle of Prenatal DHA?

You can find Diet Standards Pregnancy DHA on Amazon:


Diet Standards Vegetarian Prenatal DHA Vitamins
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