Immune Support During Pregnancy

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The Pure TheraPro Team

The Pure TheraPro Education Team is comprised of researchers from diverse backgrounds including nutrition, functional medicine, fitness, supplement formulation & food science. All articles have been reviewed for content, accuracy, and compliance by a holistic integrative nutritionist certified by an accredited institution.
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Pregnancy is a unique and transformative experience for women. It is a time when the body goes through multiple, significant changes, including the immune system. During pregnancy, the immune system is altered to support the growing baby, which is, technically, a foreign object to the mother's body.

a happy couple holds up a sonogram of their baby because their immunity is supported by Zinc

While these changes are necessary for a successful pregnancy, they can also put the immune system at risk for certain infections and illnesses. Pregnant women may be more susceptible to certain infections, such as the flu or urinary tract infections, and may experience more severe symptoms than people who aren’t.

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are the most common bacterial infections during pregnancy. In fact, they affect around 10% of pregnant women, according to a recent study published in the Journal of Family Medicine and Primary Care.

In addition, certain infections can pose a risk to the developing baby, such as cytomegalovirus (CMV) or toxoplasmosis, which can cause birth defects or miscarriage. Furthermore, some autoimmune disorders, such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis, can be triggered or worsened during pregnancy, potentially putting the mother and baby at risk. 

Pregnant women with chronic health conditions or weakened immune systems should work closely with their healthcare provider to manage their condition and protect their immune system and the growing baby.

Risk factors:


1. Infections

Pregnant women may be more susceptible to certain infections due to changes in the immune system. For example, they may be more susceptible to the flu, urinary tract infections, or yeast infections.

According to the CDC, pregnant women are at increased risk for complications from the flu. Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are also common in pregnant women and can be more difficult to treat due to changes in the immune system and hormonal changes that can affect the urinary tract.

According to the American Pregnancy Association, 10% of pregnant women will develop a UTI at some point during pregnancy.

To prevent these infections, pregnant women should practice good hygiene, wash their hands frequently, avoid contact with sick people, and seek treatment if they suspect an infection.

2. Autoimmune Disorders

Some autoimmune disorders, such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis, can be triggered or worsened during pregnancy, putting the mother and baby at risk. Autoimmune disorders, such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis, affect women more often than men and can be worsened by pregnancy. 

According to the Lupus Foundation of America, up to 30% of women with lupus will experience a flare during pregnancy. Women with lupus who have high disease activity at the time of conception or during the first trimester of pregnancy are at an increased risk of pregnancy loss and preterm birth. 

However, with appropriate monitoring and treatment, the majority of women with lupus can have successful pregnancies. Pregnant women with autoimmune disorders should work closely with their healthcare provider to manage their condition and protect their immune system and the growing baby.

3. Gestational diabetes

This is a type of diabetes that develops during pregnancy. It’s caused by the hormones produced by the placenta, which can make it harder for the mother's body to use insulin effectively. 

Gestational diabetes can lead to complications such as macrosomia (large baby), preterm labor, and preeclampsia.

A pregnant woman looks out the window holding her belly worried about pregnancy and her immune system

4. Pre-eclampsia

This is a pregnancy complication characterized by high blood pressure and protein in the urine. It usually develops after 20 weeks of pregnancy and can lead to serious complications for both the mother and baby, including seizures, preterm birth, and low birth weight. 

Pre-eclampsia affects approximately 2-8% of pregnancies in the US, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). The risk of pre-eclampsia is higher among women with pre-existing medical conditions, such as high blood pressure or diabetes.

Ways to Boost the Immune System during Pregnancy

  • Diet

Eating a healthy diet is essential for a healthy immune system during pregnancy. Pregnant women should eat a variety of fruits, vegetables, starchy vegetables, high-quality protein, and healthy fats. Foods that are rich in vitamins and minerals, such as Vitamin C, Vitamin D, and Zinc, can also help boost mom’s immune system.

  • Exercise

Regular exercise can help boost the immune system and promote overall health during pregnancy. Pregnant women should aim to get at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise most days of the week, such as brisk walking, swimming, or prenatal yoga. However, they should always consult with their healthcare provider before starting a new exercise routine.


A mother happily plays with her baby
  • Stress Management

Getting enough sleep is essential for a healthy immune system during pregnancy. Pregnant women should aim to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep per night and take naps during the day if needed because stress can weaken the immune system and increase the risk of illness and infection. 

Beyond just napping often, pregnant women should take other steps to manage their stress, such as practicing relaxation techniques like meditation or deep breathing, and/or getting regular exercise.

Additional Supplementation

Supplements are a fantastic way to support the immune system during pregnancy. Remember, pregnant women should always consult with their healthcare provider before taking any supplements, as some can be harmful to the baby. However, certain key supplements, such as a quality multivitamin, Vitamin D3 & probiotics, are generally helpful for all pregnant women.

  • Probiotics:

Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that can help support the immune system and promote healthy digestion. Some research suggests that probiotics may also reduce the risk of certain infections during pregnancy, such as urinary tract infections and yeast infections. 

Probiotics can be found in fermented foods like yogurt, kefir, and sauerkraut, or in supplement form. Remember to talk to your healthcare provider before taking any supplements during pregnancy.

Pure Thera’s Power Probiotic 100B™ has 100 billion colony-forming units (CFUs) of probiotic bacteria and is one of the very best probiotic formulas on the market today for supporting immune function, digestive health, and total-body vitality. 

It also uses innovative packaging techniques, specifically a CSP Activ Vial™ desiccant bottle, which protects the probiotic microorganisms from harmful elements such as heat, moisture, and oxygen.

  • Vitamins & Minerals

Prenatal vitamins are specially formulated to provide the essential vitamins and minerals needed during pregnancy, including Folate, Iron, Calcium, and Vitamin D. Folate is particularly important for neural tube development in the developing baby.

But let’s not forget about minerals that support immune function…

Pure Thera’s Zinc Defense™ is a unique bio-enhanced Zinc formula containing clinically-backed ingredients designed to support the body’s natural immunity. It utilizes L-OptiZinc®, a Zinc mineral-amino-acid chelate, which when paired with Quercetin (a Zinc ionophore), increases the absorption of Zinc into cells where it’s needed the most and provides the greatest immune support benefit.


Zinc Defense from Pure Thera
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids:

Omega-3 fatty acids, particularly EPA and DHA, are important for the development of the baby's brain and eyes. Some studies have also suggested that Omega-3 supplementation during pregnancy may reduce the risk of preterm birth and postpartum depression.

  • Iron:

Iron is important for the production of red blood cells and to prevent Iron deficiency & anemia. Pregnant women require more Iron than non-pregnant women to support the growing baby’s needs as well as the structure and function of the placenta.

Pure Thera’s Iron Complete™ is a potent Iron supplement that is extremely well tolerated by the gastrointestinal system. It utilizes Ferrochel®, a premier Iron chelate, and has a very-high absorption rate. 

It’s safe for use by pregnant and lactating women, teenagers, and adults. Unlike most Iron preparations, it will not result in constipation or gastric upset. It’s also proven to be 2.6x safer than Iron Sulfate and other inorganic Iron typically found in fortified foods and low-quality dietary supplements. 


Maintaining a healthy immune system is important for both pregnant women and their growing babies. While the immune system undergoes changes during pregnancy, there are many steps that women can take to support their immune health. 

Eating a healthy diet, staying active, getting enough rest, managing stress, staying hydrated, considering probiotics, and practicing good hygiene are all ways to support the immune system during pregnancy. 

It’s also important for women with chronic health conditions or weakened immune systems to work closely with their healthcare provider to manage their condition and protect their health and the health of their baby. By taking these steps, women can help support their immune system and promote a healthy pregnancy and delivery.



Motta, M., Tincani, A., & Faden, D. (2017). Systemic rheumatic diseases and pregnancy. Rheumatology, 56(suppl_5), v38-v45.

Lupus Foundation of America on lupus and pregnancy:

Palmsten, K., & Chambers, C. D. (2017). Biologic safety in pregnancy: what is the evidence? Seminars in Arthritis and Rheumatism, 47(3), 345-351.

Gualano, B., Bonfa, E., & Pereira, R. M. R. (2012). Exercise and systemic lupus erythematosus. Clinical and Experimental Rheumatology, 30(4), 552-557. PMID: 22766020

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. (2018). ACOG Committee Opinion No. 741: Maternal Immunization. Obstetrics and Gynecology, 131(6), e214-e217.

Institute of Medicine. (2011). Dietary reference intakes for calcium and vitamin D. National Academies Press.

Makrides, M., Gibson, R. A., McPhee, A. J., Yelland, L., Quinlivan, J., & Ryan, P. (2010). Effect of DHA supplementation during pregnancy on maternal depression and neurodevelopment of young children: a randomized controlled trial. Jama, 304(15), 1675-1683.

Guaraldi, F., Salvatori, G., & De Candia, S. (2014). Probiotics and prebiotics in pregnancy and maternal health: review of randomized controlled trials. Journal of nutritional science, 3, e61.