Hi. I'm 28 weeks pregnant and have just been told my iron levels are low, and I need to take tablets. But in my last pregnancy they made me very constipated. Does anyone know if the liquid ones are better? Thanks.
hi knottyhair i know exactly how you feel, i had to have iron tablets with dc 1 and vowed i would never take them again because the constipation was unbearable, so to keep my iron levels up in my last 3 pregnancies and it has worked each time i have either broccoli or sprouts with at least one meal a day (definitely doesnt make me constipated quite the opposite) my iron levels are currently 12.1 i couldn't advise on liquid tablets tho.
I took Floradix in one pregnancy and Spatone in the next. Would recommend either. Floradix from Holland & Barrett type shop and Spatone from Boots. Both are liquid. Floradix tastes a bit funny but I got used to it. It's plant based. Spatone you put in a glass of orange juice and drink it. Can't really taste it. Both recommended by midwives I had looking after me.
I've just checked and my iron tabs (Pregaday) from the doc have 6x more iron in than my Floradix does (going on the daily dose).
I'm going to see how I get on with the tablets but have already had constipation and piles earlier in pregnancy and it wasn't fun... I might try alternating between the two if the tablets are too harsh.
I've been taking Spatone since about week 28 and not had constipation problems (well no more than before I was taking it!) - I take 2 sachets per day, with vit C to aid absoprtion.
Spatone does have less iron in it but it says it's in a more absorbable form so that may make up for it? I have definitely felt less exhausted since starting it so I think it is having an effect... guess I won't know if it's enough of an effect till I get tested next though.
I have problems with constipation and iron. I didn't take any iron in my last three pregnancies and like Terilou have managed to maintain levels with diet. I got a bit of a telling off on my last visit from the midwife so spoke to the pharmacist regarding the merits of spatone and he did say there was a lot less iron. He gave me Galfer but in a liquid suspension form; this way I control the dose. So ultimately I'm aiming for 10mls but currently on 2.5mls (and then not every day) but it's not affecting my constipation. Could be another option for you if you find that the Spatone doesn't give you the extra iron you need.
Another vote for Spatone and for floradix. Also, a big recommendation for dried figs and apricots to nibble on throughout the day.
As I understand it, there's a natural dip in blood iron levels around the 28 week mark because of your increased blood volume. There's usually time over the next 6-8 weeks to get back up to a normal level before the birth with a good diet and non-constipating supplements.
FWIW, I held off taking iron tablets until the tiredness was so bad that it seemed like a worse prospect than constipation. I tend towards constipation anyway, and it was bad in early pregnancy, so was dreading it getting worse. However when I did start taking tablets, I found that my constipation improved rather than worsened. I know it's not normal, but it does happen!