Best Postnatal Vitamins

Updated April 2019
Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
Bottom Line
Pros
Cons
How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

14 Models Considered
6 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
120 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.

Shopping guide for best postnatal vitamins

Last Updated April 2019

Plenty of women, even if not avid vitamin consumers, begin taking supplements once they find out they’re pregnant. But what about after the baby’s delivery? A woman’s health needs still matter post-pregnancy, especially if she’s breastfeeding. Postnatal vitamins provide necessary nutrients to replenish a mother’s energy and fortify her baby’s breastmilk diet.

Before you buy a postnatal supplement, there are some things to consider. Most important is the type of vitamins the supplement includes, as new mothers and babies have specific nutritional needs. Some postnatal vitamins are designed to increase milk production, while others supplement the mother’s diet. You may also want to take into consideration the taste of the vitamin and how easy it is to swallow.

Not all women feel the need to take postnatal vitamins. Some women continue to take the prenatal vitamins they started in pregnancy, while others feel a strong diet is enough. But a quality postnatal supplement will help your baby grow and keep you energized during the exciting, exhausting stage of early motherhood.

Talk to your doctor before you begin taking any new dietary supplement.

Key considerations


Milk production

Breastfeeding doesn’t always happen easily. If you’re a new mom who is having trouble with lactation, there are a number of postnatal vitamins you could take to help increase milk production. These supplements typically contain vitamins and/or herbs, such as brewer’s yeast and fenugreek, that promote lactation. Some women may find that the extra nutrients in any postnatal supplement increases milk production regardless of whether the supplement explicitly boosts lactation.

Included vitamins

Postnatal supplements bring together the critical vitamins for mothers and their newborns. Here are some of the key nutrients to look for on a postnatal vitamin bottle.

  • Vitamin C helps expedite healing, an important aspect of the post-pregnancy phase whether you delivered vaginally or via C-section. Having a child can leave the body vulnerable to illness, too. Vitamin C can help perk up your immune system to keep you healthy for your baby.
  • Vitamin D deficiency is common, especially in new mothers. Babies tend to be vitamin D deficient, too, and laying out in the sun just isn’t an option for their tender skin. Vitamin D is crucial for strong bones, and it enhances the absorption of minerals like calcium and magnesium. Vitamin D also improves immunity and fights off sickness. All qualities are necessary for both mother and child. Breastmilk usually lacks a sufficient amount of vitamin D for a growing infant, so it’s vital to consume this nutrient through food and supplements.
  • B complex vitamins assist with milk production and mood for new mothers. Specific vitamins like B6 can help your baby’s sleep cycle, while B12 promotes the growth of new cells, supporting your baby’s brain development. Look for supplements that include a whole suite of B Vitamins.
  • DHA, or docosahexaenoic acid, is an omega-3 fatty acid common in prenatal supplements. DHA has been proven to support the brain and eye development of growing fetuses. Postpartum, DHA continues to promote newborn development. DHA must be obtained through diet and supplements. In mothers, DHA can help combat postpartum depression and other problems attributed to fatty acid deficiency.

Fortify your milk supply

Actif is truly a cut above the rest, with over 25 organic ingredients to support breastfeeding and milk production. Buyers say the supplements go down easily, increase milk supply, and as a bonus, they promote nail growth. Unlike several postnatal vitamins, Actif contains choline. Choline is crucial for encouraging brain development in newborns. While not cheap, Actif is proof that high quality is worth paying for, especially when your infant is involved.

Postnatal vitamin features


Organic vs. non-organic

The last things a mother wants is unknown chemicals going into her baby’s body. And vitamins tend to be unregulated by the FDA, making postnatal vitamins seem risky. The good news is, several of the best postnatal supplements are organic certified and Non-GMO Project Verified. These supplements tend to exclude animal gelatin and synthetic fillers.

Taste

Postnatal vitamins, like vitamins in general, aren’t known for being tasty — with the exception of gummy postnatal vitamins, which come in a variety of flavors, and a few brands that are flavored naturally with lemon. It is noteworthy that many organic supplements have no artificial dyes or flavors, and many consumers feel this is for the best, as sugar is not a desirable ingredient.

DID YOU KNOW?

Vitamin C has its beauty benefits, too. Your body uses vitamin C to create collagen, which is necessary for hair growth and skin elasticity.

Postnatal vitamin prices

The average container of postnatal vitamins costs anywhere from $10 to $45. Supplements that are available for $15 or less aren’t likely to be organically certified. Some may have some quality issues, such as an unpleasant or fishy taste. You can also find some vitamin-infused postnatal teas in this price range.

If you’re looking for a quality postnatal supplement that is organic, $20 to $35 is a good target price. Note that some supplements require you to take two or three pills a day, and most bottles contain 60 pills. Therefore, you could end up spending up to $30 monthly to replenish your vitamins.

Vitamins that cost more than $35 may be manufactured in small quantities, include more pills per bottle, or include additional superfood supplementation.

EXPERT TIP

Mothers require an extra 500 calories while breastfeeding, so eat accordingly. You can still lose weight while eating a balanced diet.


Staff  | BestReviews

Tips

  • Be sure to fortify your diet with fish, meat, fruits, vegetables, and nuts to supplement your postnatal vitamins.
  • If you’re breastfeeding, you’re constantly depleting the fluids in your body. Don’t forget to stay hydrated.
  • Iodine is another important nutrient for breastfeeding mothers, as it supports brain development in newborns. If you don’t find iodine in a supplement, try using iodized salt in your food preparation.

Choline is an often-overlooked but necessary vitamin for development. Pregnant women are at high risk for choline deficiency.

A bargain for breastfeeders

Milkies postnatal supplement is fortified with vitamin D, commonly deficient in new mothers and infants, and iron. Unlike several iron supplements, Milkies is gentle on the stomach — even an empty one. Users report increased energy levels and milk supply. This all-natural supplement is highly recommended by the American Pregnancy Association.

Other products we considered

There’s no shortage of postnatal vitamins to choose from. We like Mama Select’s Postnatal Plus Vitamins. The formula is vegetarian, easily soluble, and fortified with iron, which is crucial after the heavy blood loss from vaginal delivery or C-section.

Bright and Mighty’s One Daily Postnatal Multivitamin users praise the supplement’s lack of unpleasant taste, which can be a problem in postnatal vitamins. This gluten-free, shellfish-free, wheat-free supplement will give your mood and energy a needed perk, too.

Postnatal depression is real, and while taking a postnatal vitamin can help with your physical well-being, you should seek the help of a qualified physician if you experience symptoms of depression.

FAQ

Q. What’s the difference between prenatal and postnatal vitamins?
A.
Prenatal and postnatal vitamins are similar in that both include B complex vitamins and folic acid. One significant difference is that postnatal supplements include vitamin D and other vitamins that are crucial to early infant development.

Q. Is it okay to take prenatal vitamins postnatal?
A.
Some doctors may recommend that women continue their prenatal vitamins after delivery, but postnatal vitamins provide added vitamins for breastfeeding.

Q. Can’t I get the nutrients I need from food alone?
A.
While foods do provide the nutrients needed for breastfeeding, it can be difficult for new moms to regulate their diet to ensure they receive enough vitamins. Postnatal supplements take the guesswork out of vitamin intake, so you have more energy to devote to your new baby.

The team that worked on this review
  • Ana
    Ana
    Writer
  • Eliza
    Eliza
    Production Manager
  • Melinda
    Melinda
    Web Producer
  • Melissa
    Melissa
    Senior Editor
  • Ola
    Ola
    Writer

BestReviews wants to be better. Please take our 3-minute survey,
and give us feedback about your visit today.

Take Survey