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Plant-Based vs. Fish-Based DHA: Choose the Right Prenatal Vitamin

A Warm Welcome to Motherhood

Congratulations on embarking on the beautiful journey of motherhood! Out of all the decisions you'll face, a key one is choosing a high-quality prenatal vitamin. Alongside that, you’ll want to pick the right DHA supplement.

Our Mama Bird® Prenatal DHA contains fish oil that’s from sustainably sourced, wild-caught anchovies from the coast of Iceland. For those of you who are vegan, we created Mama Bird Vegan Prenatal DHA.

In this article, we’ll look at how plant-based DHA compares to fish-based DHA to help you make the best decision for your growing family.


    Benefits and Drawbacks of Plant-Based and Fish-Based DHA

    Plant-based DHA is derived from microalgae, which is the original source of DHA in nature. Algae-based DHA is a sustainable and eco-friendly option that is perfect for vegetarians, vegans, or those with seafood allergies.

    Fish-based DHA comes from fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, and sardines. These fish consume algae, which is how they acquire DHA. Fish oil supplements are a popular source of DHA for many people.

    Both plant-based and fish-based DHA will provide the necessary omega-3 fatty acids to support your baby's brain, eye, and nervous system development.

    Benefits of omega-3 fatty acids:

    • Supports optimal fetal development
    • Contributes to maternal health during pregnancy
    Potential drawbacks:
    • Contaminants in fish-based DHA: Fish can accumulate toxins like mercury and PCBs, which may be present in fish oil supplements. However, high-quality supplements undergo rigorous purification processes to remove these contaminants, so make sure you buy from a reputable source.
    • Bioavailability in plant-based DHA: There have been concerns that plant-based DHA might have lower bioavailability than fish-based DHA, but recent research has indicated that algae-derived DHA is absorbed well and utilized effectively by the body.


        Your Journey, Your Choice

        For those following plant-based diets or avoiding animal products, our Mama Bird Vegan Prenatal DHA is an excellent choice. This high-quality softgel contains pure algae-derived DHA, which provides a sustainable and eco-friendly alternative to fish oil. Taking a DHA along with a multivitamin like our Mama Bird Prenatal Multi+ ensures expectant moms receive important vitamins and the right amount of DHA.

        Whether you choose plant-based or fish-based DHA supplements, may your pregnancy journey be filled with joy and love for you and your growing family!


        Frequently Asked Questions

        What is DHA and why is it an important in prenatal nutrient?

        DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) is an essential omega-3 fatty acid vital for fetal brain, eye, and nervous system development during pregnancy.

        What are the differences between plant-based and fish-based DHA?

        Plant-based DHA comes from microalgae, while fish-based DHA is derived from fatty fish; both support fetal development but cater to different dietary preferences and lifestyles.

        Is plant-based DHA as effective as fish-based DHA?

        Recent research indicates that algae-derived DHA is well absorbed and effectively utilized by the body, making it a viable alternative to fish-based DHA.

        Can vegans and vegetarians get enough DHA from their diets? 

        Plant-based DHA supplements, like those derived from algae, can help vegans and vegetarians meet their DHA requirements during pregnancy.

        How much DHA should I consume during pregnancy?

        Experts recommend a daily intake of at least 200-300 mg of DHA during pregnancy for optimal fetal development and maternal health. Our Mama Bird Prenatal DHA contains 500 mg of potent DHA and 840 mg of purified omega-3 made from real triglyceride oil—the form naturally found in fish and the form your body most easily absorbs.

        Are there any side effects of taking DHA supplements?

        DHA supplements are generally safe, but some individuals may experience mild side effects like gastrointestinal discomfort; consult your healthcare provider before starting supplementation if you have any health concerns!