Getting sufficient iron during pregnancy is so important, but a lot of women forget about taking iron postpartum. This is arguably the most important time to take iron, especially if you experience blood loss during labour.

During this time, feeling tired and low in energy is often attributed to the marathon of labour when in fact it may be because of low iron levels. Getting sufficient iron can help support your iron levels, which in turn can make you feel energised and ready for the challenge of motherhood!

In this section, we will help you understand why iron is so important in the 4th trimester, and answer all your questions, including:


Postpartum iron supplement dosage: How much iron do you need postpartum?

Iron requirements decline during the postpartum period, however this time may serve as a time to restore lost iron as a result of labour and pregnancy. It is estimated that up to 40% of women have low iron levels¹, which can often lead to health implications for both mum and baby. Studies have shown similar results in postpartum women, with one study showing (in healthy women after normal delivery) the prevalence of anaemia one week postpartum was 14% in iron supplemented women and 24% in non-supplemented women².

For this reason, the World Health Organisation recommend a postpartum iron supplement dosage between 10mg and 30mg of iron per day for postpartum women, depending on the bioavailability of the iron.

Despite the importance of iron, not all iron supplements contain enough iron to support iron levels throughout pregnancy. Therefore, when considering postpartum iron supplementation, it is important to look for one that is well absorbed and well tolerated (i.e doesn’t cause side effects such as nausea and constipation). In my opinion, Active Iron is the best supplement after delivery! I recommend Active Iron due to its unique formula that is clinically proven to increase iron levels while helping to avoid side effects.


Can breastfeeding mothers take iron supplements?

Can breastfeeding moms take iron supplements? Yes! Iron supplements are perfectly safe for breastfeeding women. This is because very little iron passes into the breast milk. Your need for iron decreases following pregnancy, so after three months you may wish to change your iron supplement to a lower dose to maintain your iron levels. 14mg of iron per day is the recommended dose for women of childbearing age.

Best Postpartum Iron Supplement

Iron is the best iron supplement postpartum and I couldn’t recommend it more. Its non-constipating formula is gentle on the tummy yet clinically proven to increase iron levels by 94%³. Active Iron is suitable for pre, during and post pregnancy.

Active Iron Pregnancy Plus offers the complete nutritional solution throughout pregnancy. It contains 25mg of clinically proven Active Iron, as well as the essential vitamins and minerals required to support energy levels, your immune system and general health to allow a faster recovery.

When can I stop taking iron supplements after pregnancy?

It is recommended to keep taking your iron supplement for three months following birth. This will allow sufficient time to rebuild your iron stores. If your iron supplements are not working, you may experience the following:

  • Continued tiredness and fatigue
  • Poor concentration
  • Weak immune system

Side effects such as nausea and constipation (this can indicate that your iron supplement is not well absorbed)


Postpartum iron supplementation: Conclusion

Iron is just as important postnatally as it is during pregnancy. Although iron requirements decline during the postpartum period, your iron levels may be low due to blood loss during labour or low iron levels during pregnancy. Between 10mg to 30mg of iron is recommended during the postpartum period. Therefore, taking an iron supplement postpartum is recommended.

When choosing an iron supplement, it is important to choose one that is well absorbed to avoid unnecessary side effects such as constipation and diarrhoea. Iron supplements are perfectly safe to take during the postpartum period. It is recommended that women continue to take their iron supplements for three months after labour. After this time, you may wish to change your iron supplement to a lower dose. Active Iron Pregnancy Plus contains all the essential vitamins and minerals for pre, during and post pregnancy.

If you have any further questions related to the postnatal period, please email them to or send us a message on our social media @activeironworld.

¹WHO global anaemia estimates: Anaemia in women and children (2021)

²Milman N. Postpartum anemia I: definition, prevalence, causes, and consequences. Ann Hematol. 2011;90(11):1247-1253. doi:10.1007/s00277-011-1279-z

³Ledwidge et al. 2021. Data on file.

Avril Flynn

Avril Flynn


Avril Flynn is a registered midwife and mum of one. As an expert in women’s health, Avril has been helping women gain knowledge and confidence for years. She takes a holistic approach to ensure parents feel empowered as they navigate parenthood. @AvrilTheMidwife