Tuesday, July 15, 2008

At the risk of T.M.I...........

I hate to get into the whole "too much information" problem on this blog o'mine, but I could use some input from other "Moms who have been there". I ALWAYS have a problem with iron supplements when I am pregnant. If I don't take iron supplements, I get anemia. If I even take a little bit of iron I get, um, unproductive. (I'm sure you Moms know what I mean!!) I can't even bear to take my prenatal vitamin because it has 90(!!!!) mg of iron. My ob says I'll be fine because it "has a stool softener" so I need to take it. But it made me sick. Really, really sick. Like Hubby thought that he had to take me to the hospital sick one night because I was in pain from being, um, unproductive for a number of days and then my body painfully corrected itself all night long. (I know, TMI. Sorry. Iron just makes me really sick when I am pregnant.) So I switched to my normal One-A-Day that I take (without problems, I must add!) when I am not pregnant and a folic acid supplement. Still sick, though not as bad as with the pre-natal. I got sick of the constant cramps so I switched to my kiddos children's vitamin that has no iron in it. Now I am fine, but my ob is not happy at all and insists that I must take the pre-natal in order to have a healthy baby and that I am absolutely not bothered by iron during pregnancy because my body needs it. (I guess that I just imagined all those intestinal cramps.) So I am torn. I feel fine as long as I DON'T TAKE my pre-natal or regular vitamin. I am in horrible pain with it. My ob said I just have to "let my body get used to it". I must stress, this is not the first time this has happened. It happened with both of my other pregnancies too. I just didn't take any vitamins either time and still gave birth to happy, healthy babies.

Has anyone else had this problem? I was going to try to be good this time and suffer through the pre-natal vitamins, but my body just revolts. I have the whole "mommy guilt" thing going on, and my ob has just made me feel worse by almost implying that it is impossible for someone to have problems with iron during pregnancy. But not going to the bathroom for days just plain hurts. Again, sorry for TMI. I have a friend who is an RN and she said to just stop taking the pre-natals and take what doesn't make me sick. Anyway, has anyone else ever had this problem, and if so what did you do??


Anonymous said...

I am chronically anemic. Does iron make you sick if you get it from food sources?

Total (whole grain) cereal has 100% of the day's iron and zinc (that is also something I need to add) without supplements.

It would seem that if you ate 2 bowls of cereal a day - that has the same nutrients that your pre-natal has, you could supplement the folate and stuff that the cereal lacks, without the difficulty of the supplement. (Studies show that vitamins and minerals are more accessible to your body when they're from food anyway.)

I track my eating for the day in the MasterCook recipe program, so I can get a printout of the macro-nutrients based on what I actually eat.

If Total (Whole Grain) has the nutrients that your doctor wants you to have, that could be a 'bargaining chip". "You lay off me about the iron pill, I'll be a good girl and get everything from this wonderful cereal (which actually is pretty good.)

KitKat said...

Oh thanks, Ellen! No, iron does not make me sick if I get it from food. I only get sick if I take those darn pills. I have to tell you, I even tried to add fiber, yogurt, etc. (like my ob told me to) and nothing seems to make it so that my body can handle that much iron by pill. I would much rather eat my iron. So now I want to know: if I (or another preggy mom) could get our iron from actual food why are they so intent on us taking those crazy horse pills? Crazy!!!

Anyway, thanks again for the tip.

Anonymous said...

Glad I could help. My issue is mostly zinc and the pills make me feel like I'm pregnant (morning sick). But if I get it from food I'm fine. So when I saw you post about the pills it really rang a bell.

KitKat said...

I'm glad that I am not the only one that has trouble with pills. (Well, kinda glad in a "I knew that I'm not crazy!" way. I can only imagine what morning sickness without pregnancy must feel like. Yuck!) The dr's office made me feel like a freak. The nurse actually said "Well, it sounds like you're just pregnant to me". But then other moms have told me that they have had trouble with the prenatals also. So I just don't understand why the dr. doesn't seem to get it. Can you tell that I am just a frustrated and ranting pregnant lady right now? LOL! Gotta love those hormones.

Tracy said...

I had to take colace stool softener and even now (not pregnant) I have to take it to stay regular, it is safe for pregnancy.
Also, my prenatal pills always made me so sick and they do have different kinds and brands and my doctor always would switch my brand if the one I was taking made me sick.. also, I took them right before bedtime so the effects would be almost worn off by a.m.
hope this helps, its been over five yrs since I was pregnant.. things have changed and I know that all doctors are so different.. one is so different then the next etc. Good luck!!

a soldier's wife said...

I couldn't take my pre-natal pills either. They made me horribly sick, and even know I can take vitamins because of the iron in them. With my daughter, I couldn't eat anything either for the majority of the time, so spent lots of hours every week getting IV's.
All this to say, I have always been anemic, although I do try to eat foods high in iron, and my daughter was a baby, she had a very high iron count. She couldn't use the bathroom (you know what) on her own for the first 6-8 months of her life, and had to be put on low-iron formula(long story on the not breastfeeding) to help with it all.

I know this doesn't really relate to you, but just wanted to let you know that you aren't alone (((Hugs)))

Kelly said...

I don't know if you're into alternative medicine or not but I drank a nettle and alfalfa tea that was high in iron.

I'm not really into it myself, but I couldn't find that it would be harmful, and sure enough, my ice cravings (a sign of anemia) went away within a day of drinking the tea.

KitKat said...

Hi Kelly, I am willing to try anything and I am kind of into some forms of alternative medicine. Thanks for the tip! Did you find that at GNC or a health food store, etc?

Kelly said...

My local health food store (at the time) had bulk natural tea fixings. I bought alfalfa, nettle, and red raspberry leaf and mixed them together in a big 2 gallon zip lock. I had one or two cups a day. It tasted like grass, but wasn't unpleasant.

In my new town, my health food store doesn't have that option. They sell some little Traditional Medicinals in boxes, and there is a female or pregnancy one that has similar ingredient.

But if you buy a pre-mixed, you need to carefully check the ingredients, as there are some ingredients that you aren't supposed to have in pregnancy.

If you only have the box option, then I would suggest trying one and if you like it, order bulk ingredients from online somewhere. It is much cheaper that way, even factoring in shipping. That's what I plan to do in my pregnancy this time.