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B12 and Prenatal Supplements Gain Official Nod

In updated 2020-2025 dietary guidelines, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services have endorsed the specific use of certain supplements, noting that under-consumption of some nutrients among Americans is linked to health concerns. The guidelines advise that infants being fed breast milk exclusively or partially should be given a vitamin D supplement of 400 IU per day beginning soon after birth and perhaps continuing for more than a year. Women that are pregnant or planning to become pregnant should take a daily prenatal vitamin and mineral supplement. Pregnant or lactating women that follow a vegetarian or vegan diet are advised to talk to their healthcare provider about supplementation to ensure that they get adequate amounts of iron, vitamin B12, choline, zinc, iodine and omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). The guidelines also state that some older adults may require vitamin B12 supplements, noting concerns over the amount of the vitamin absorbed from food.

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