The importance of lifestyle and dietary habits during pregnancy and breastfeeding, for health of mothers and their offspring, is widely supported by the most recent scientific literature. The consumption of a varied and balanced diet from the preconception period (pre-pregnancy), pregnancy and over the first two years of the child’s life is essential to ensure both maternal well-being and pregnancy outcomes.  In pregnancy, requirements of energy, protein, and essential micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) are increased not only to maintain the mother’s own health, but to also support optimal physical and brain development in the fetus. Furthermore, nutrition reserves are built over pregnancy to produce breast milk for the post-child birth phase. 
However, many women don’t get enough iron, folate, calcium, vitamin D, or protein. So when you are pregnant, it is important for you to increase the amounts of foods you eat with these nutrients.  Deficiencies of energy, protein, iron, calcium, iodine, vitamin A and folic acid during pregnancy predispose mothers to maternal complications and even mortality. These also contribute to fetal birth defects, low birth weight, restricted physical and mental potential, and fetal or newborn mortality. 
According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), you should try to eat a variety of foods from these basic food groups. If you do, you are likely to get all the nutrients you need for a healthy pregnancy. According to ACOG, you and your baby need these key nutrients for a healthy pregnancy :
- Calcium: Helps to build strong bones and teeth. Main sources include milk, cheese, yogurt, and sardines. During pregnancy you need 1,000 milligrams (mg) daily.
***To learn more about Calcium and Dr. Kenawy’s Algae based Calcium supplementation, click here***
- Iron: Helps red blood cells deliver oxygen to your baby. Sources include lean red meat, dried beans, peas, and iron-fortified cereals. During pregnancy you need 27 mg daily.
***To learn more about Iron and Dr. Kenawy’s Easy Iron supplementation, click here***
- Vitamin A: You need this vitamin for healthy skin, eyesight, and bone growth. Carrots, dark, leafy greens, and sweet potatoes are good sources. During pregnancy you need 770 micrograms daily.
***To learn more about Vitamin A and Dr. Kenawy’s Vitamin A supplementation, click here***
- Vitamin C: Promotes healthy gums, teeth, and bones, and helps your body absorb iron. Good sources include citrus fruit, broccoli, tomatoes, and strawberries. During pregnancy you need 85 mg daily.
***To learn more about Vitamin C and Dr. Kenawy’s Vitamin C supplementation, click here***
- Vitamin D: Aids your body in the absorption of calcium to help build your baby’s bones and teeth. Sources include exposure to sunlight, fortified milk, and fatty fish, such as salmon. During pregnancy you need 600 international units (IUs) daily.
- Vitamin B6: Helps form red blood cells and helps your body use protein, fat, and carbohydrates. You can find vitamin B6 in beef, liver, pork, whole-grain cereals, and bananas. During pregnancy you need 1.9 mg daily.
***To learn more about VitaminB6 and Dr. Kenawy’s Vitamin B6 supplementation, click here***
- Vitamin B12: Helps form red blood cells and maintains your nervous system. You can find this vitamin only in animal products. Good sources include liver, meat, fish, poultry, and milk. During pregnancy you need 2.6 micrograms daily.
***To learn more about Vitamin B12 and Dr. Kenawy’s Methyl B12 supplementation, click here***
- Folate (Folic Acid): a B vitamin important in the production of blood and protein, it also reduces the risk of neural tube defects (a birth defect of the brain and spinal cord). You can find folate in green, leafy vegetables, liver, orange juice, legumes (beans, peas, lentils), and nuts. You must get at least 400 micrograms of folate daily before pregnancy and during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy to reduce the risk of neural tube defects. During pregnancy, doctors recommend you get 600 micrograms daily.
***To learn more about Folate and Dr. Kenawy’s Methylfolate supplementation, click here***
See the below table for recommended weight gain during pregnancy [Source: Institute of Medicine and National Research Council. 2009. Weight Gain During Pregnancy: Reexamining the Guidelines. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press].
The popular saying is that pregnant women “eat for two,” but now we know that it’s dangerous to eat twice your usual amount of food during pregnancy. Instead of “eating for two,” think of it as eating twice as healthy. If you are pregnant with one fetus, you will need to consume a little more than 300 extra calories per day. Hence, women carrying twins should consume about 600 extra calories a day, and women carrying triplets should take in 900 extra calories a day. 
Unfortunately the risk of inadequate intakes of specific micronutrients in pregnancy and lactation is high even in the most industrialized countries. This particularly applies to docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), iron, iodine, calcium, folic acid, and vitamin D, also in the Italian population. Moreover, the risk of not reaching the adequate nutrient supply is increased for selected groups of women of childbearing age: those following exclusion diets, underweight or overweight/obese, smokers, adolescents, mothers who have had multiple or close pregnancies, and those with previous unfavorable pregnancy outcomes. 
Bottom line: During pregnancy, maintaining optimal nutritional status is of utmost importance for mother and baby. The transfer of essential nutrients from mother to fetus, ensures the fetus receives adequate nutrients for normal, healthy growth, development and function.
It is important to remember that Vitamin and mineral supplements cannot replace a healthy diet. Most doctors recommend that pregnant women take a prenatal vitamin and mineral supplement every day in addition to eating a healthy diet.
As with all of Dr. Kenawy's professional line products, we use the best manufactures in making our formulas. Dr. Kenawy’s Prenatal Plus formula is synergistic blend of vitamins, minerals, and herbs, including branded ingredients Neuromins® DHA, ChromeMate®, and L-OptiZinc® Our formula provides optimal rather than minimal amounts of all essential vitamins and minerals, along with added support ingredients such as the omega-3 fat DHA along with herbs such as ginger and chamomile. Our Prenatal Plus is the highest quality prenatal vitamin available with several patented, trademarked ingredients (details listed below).
- 4 tablet formula during pregnancy and lactation.
- Contains more vitamins and minerals than most other brands. Many companies use RDA’s, which are the minimum recommendations. These don’t reflect individual needs i.e. differences in food intake, stress level, activity level, etc.
- Support bone development:
- More calcium 800 mg per 4 tabs than most other companies
- Magnesium 450 mg
- Vit D3 400 IU
- Vit K 100 mcg
- Trademarked ingredients:
- ChromeMate® brand chromium- consists of chromium bound to niacin, two nutrients essential for cholesterol and fat metabolism.† ChromeMate® is an oxygen-coordinated niacin-bound chromium complex that plays an important role in supporting healthy insulin function, maintenance of healthy blood sugar and cholesterol levels.† ChromeMate® has numerous scientific studies demonstrating its safety and efficacy in supporting healthy blood glucose metabolism, particularly helping to support normal, healthy insulin function.†
- Neuromins® life’s omega 3 fatty acid DHA 50mg – is a vegetable source of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), an essential omega-3 fatty acid. While most DHA is obtained from fish oils, Neuromins™ is extracted from microalgae, the fish’s original food source, under tightly controlled food manufacturing conditions.†
- Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is an omega-3 fatty acid and plays a significant role in cerebral development, especially during the crucial period of fetal development and infancy. Pregnant mothers transfer DHA directly to the fetus to support rapid brain and retina development. DHA is supplied to the newborn via mother’s breast milk.
- L-OptiZinc® - [patented form] of zinc mono-L-methionine with superior absorption, retention and antioxidant and cell protectant properties compared to other forms of zinc tested.***To learn more about Zinc and Dr. Kenawy’s L-OptiZinc supplementation, click here.***
- Synergistic herbs:
- German chamomile and ginger
- Calcium, magnesium and vitamin D3 are essential for the growth of healthy bone structure.
- High amount of folic acid (800 mcg) helps reduce risk of neural tube (brain and spinal cord) defects in newborn babies.†
- Vitamin K for blood clotting and bone formation.†
- ChromeMate® brand chromium has been shown to be better absorbed and more bioavailable than other forms of chromium. Chromium is essential for normal, healthy insulin function which oftentimes becomes compromised during pregnancy.
- L-OptiZinc® brand zinc is better absorbed and utilized by the body. Zinc is essential for normal growth, development and immune function.
- The omega-3 fatty acid DHA is essential for normal, healthy brain development and the formation of the retina of the eyes.†
- German chamomile and ginger helps provide support for those queasy mornings.†
†These statements have not been evaluated by The Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Information and statements made are for education purposes and are not intended to replace the advice of your General Practitioner. If you have a severe medical condition or health concern, see your physician.
 Maternal Diet and Nutrient Requirements in Pregnancy and Breastfeeding. An Italian Consensus Document. (2016, October 1). PubMed Central (PMC). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5084016/
 Nutritional Needs During Pregnancy. (n.d.). John Muir Health. https://www.johnmuirhealth.com/health-education/health-wellness/pregnancy-breastfeeding/nutritional-needs-during-pregnancy.html
 Improving Nutrition and Health for Pregnant and Lactating Women. (2016, December 12). SUN Movement. https://scalingupnutrition.org/news/improving-nutrition-and-health-for-pregnant-and-lactating-women/
 Nutrition During Pregnancy. (n.d.). ACOG: American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.. https://www.acog.org/patient-resources/faqs/pregnancy/nutrition-during-pregnancy