Iron needs increase during pregnancy; you are tested at least two or three times during pregnancy to see what your iron levels are.
Why do you need iron during pregnancy? The main reason is you are creating another human being that needs a lot of blood or red blood cells; the mother will have a lower amount of iron because the baby tranfers it from the mother.
Iron needs during pregnancy are 27mg; if you are not pregnant you only need 18mg of iron.
How do you get iron when you're pregnant? Several supplements are available plus several food options are available.
Several high iron foods are available when you're pregnant include meats, eggs, lamb, chicken, pork, and cashews, beans, lentils and lesser amounts in vegetables.
Vegetarian options include spinach, beans, and lentils, but it's a good idea to take vitamin C rich foods as it helps iron get into the blood.
Look on the food labels to ensure it has a high iron value. The Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program includes foods high in Iron, just make sure you read the label.
Why do some pregnant women not want to take prenatal vitamins? It may make them nauseated! If so, try taking supplements during lunch with food, and not on an empty stomach.
If you have low iron during pregnancy, if doctor orders extra iron supplements, side effects include constipation, make sure you drink a lots of water, and get enough fiber in your diet.
If iron gets too low, pregnant women may crave nonfood items called Pica; cravings include chalk, laundry soap, corn starch, baby powder, and more.