How to Pop Prenatal Vitamins Like They’re Going Out of Style

I get all choked up, quite literally, if I take prenatal vitamins without following the tips I’m going to share with you today. My gag reflex kicks in and they just won’t go down!

A strong gag reflex can truly get in the way of trying to take a prenatal vitamin. Here are the things I did to finally start swallowing my prenatal vitamin while pregnant and nauseous!© Johan Larson / Dollar Photo Club

Until I started trying for kids, I avoided pills and vitamins with a vengeance. I never liked the thought of pills in the first place, even for helping with a bad cold or easing a terrible headache. I always just endured the pain.

Horse Pills

A few months before I got pregnant with my oldest daughter, I bought my first bottle of prenatal vitamins. I opened up the bottle and took out the cotton inside it. I looked in the bottle and noticed that the size of the vitamins was even bigger than I had imagined. Years before in high school, I had trouble trying to take tylenol, which I remember being fairly small compared to this vitamin. Uh oh. I honestly wasn’t sure if I’d be able to take them.

Not only were these particular vitamins pretty large, but they were also stinky and had a horrible taste. If I didn’t get it down my throat in about 2 seconds flat, I wasn’t going to get it down. The stink would first make my gag reflex kick in and then the extra few seconds the vitamin was swimming around in my mouth would just send me over the top. Absolutely disgusting!

My first few failed attempts were the source of much entertainment for César. It got to a point that when I was about to take the vitamin at breakfast he would stop whatever he was doing and stare at me. He would say that he was waiting for “the show.” That only made it worse! I just couldn’t swallow those darn horse pills for nothing.

For the first few months, it was hit and miss with the vitamins. Some days I would just think, Forget it, I can’t swallow it anyways. I would be so close to swallowing it, and then I would just involuntarily gag. I couldn’t do it.

Then when I found out I was pregnant, I knew I had to take it much more seriously. I had to find the best way to take the vitamin without gagging or going through three a day before finally getting one down.

How to Take Prenatal Vitamins Like a Pro

So I seeked out some advice from the Google Masterminds, and here’s what worked best for me. If you follow these tips too, you’ll be taking prenatal vitamins like a pro in no time!

1. Take the prenatal vitamin with juice or milk, NEVER water.
2. Make sure nobody is around to watch you take it, especially if you get nervous easily.
3. Put the vitamin in your mouth towards the back of your mouth so it’s nearly entering your throat.
4. Once the vitamin is in your mouth, hurry and take a swig of your beverage.
5. Take in a lot of liquid at once so that the vitamin can be sent down your throat with ease.
6. Tip your head back to let gravity do its work.

After I started using these tips each time I took my vitamins, I rarely ever had a problem swallowing them. It’s been three years, and the only times I’ve had trouble since that frustrating period was when I was thinking too much or taking them with water.

I might add that if you have morning sickness, try to take your vitamin at a time during the day when you aren’t feeling nauseous. You should also take it with a meal, at least for most prenatal vitamins. I know you can also buy prenatal vitamins that are much smaller, but if you choose to get the horse pills, these tips will be very helpful.

I’ve never done this, but if it’s the smell that is really getting you, plug your nose or just stop breathing through your nose and it should go down easier.

Do you have trouble swallowing pills and vitamins?

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I'm a mom of 3 on a journey to feed my family nourishing foods. Personally, I believe that you can feed your family healthy, delicious meals without spending a fortune or slaving away in the kitchen.


  1. Leilani says:

    It’s hard to find the ones that are smaller. I searched and searched when I just couldn’t stomach the big ones. Finally my doctor found some for me. I do all of those things you said though, and they do help. Man oh man nothing worse than letting it swim around in your mouth letting you taste the yuckiness!

    • I had no idea it was hard to find the small ones, but I guess that’s why I ended up with large ones. So glad to hear I’m not the only one who has trouble with the buggers!

  2. I have the same problem so thank you for these tips! My problem is worse as in I have issues even with the smaller pills.

  3. Tiffany says:

    Great ideas! I hated the pills during my first trimester! The morning sickness and pills never sat well on my stomach. I finally found the prenatal gummies and oh boy that made pregnancy so much better!

  4. Simple Holistic Girl says:

    LOL – these are good tips! I remember having to take prenatal vitamins. I just don’t understand why they are so BIG! I’d rather take 2 smaller vitamins then one HUGE one.


  1. […] never had an issue keeping my prenatal vitamin down (my problem with my first pregnancy was getting it down in the first place!). I really believe that the brand of prenatal vitamin can be a factor. I have always taken […]

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