Pregnant and vegan – how to eat well for you and your baby

pregnant vegan mummy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Vegan Mommy Healthy Diet

The benefits of plant based diets have really come to the fore in recent years, yet there still seems to be a bit of doubt about whether you can eat vegan when you’re pregnant. The short answer is yes, you certainly can. As long as you’re well prepared and take on board the requisite nutrients, there’s no reason you should have to eat any animal based products. Let’s look at how to do it.

Protein sources

As you’ll probably know one of the hardest parts of eating a vegan diet is taking on enough protein, and this is vital when you’re pregnant. Make sure you’ve got plenty of the following in your diet and you’ll be fine:

  • Pulses
  • Lentils
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Wholegrain rice and pasta
  • Soya

Vitamins

The main important vitamins to take on board are:

  • Vitamin A: needed for implantation
    Sources include carrots, peppers, leafy greens and sweet potato
  • Vitamin C: maintains strength in the membrane that surrounds baby
    Sources include oranges, peas, broccoli and berries
  • Vitamin E: helps reduce the risk of defects
    Sources include wholegrains, celery and avocados
  • Vitamin B12: essential for blood formation and the nervous system
    Sources include fortified breakfast cereals and soya
    Supplementing with B12 is a very good idea when you’re pregnant
  • Vitamin D: helps the body to absorb calcium
  • Sources include some plant based milk, otherwise consider supplementing

 

Iron

Iron is another vital nutrient, especially during pregnancy, as it’s needed to make blood and help move oxygen around your body and to baby. Too little iron can lead to increased tiredness and even anaemia, but foods like soya, legumes, dark greens and wholegrains will give you a boost.

 

Fats, zinc and calcium

Fats, zinc and calcium are essential too:

  • Fats: your baby constantly needs Omega 3 for development (Sources include flaxseed, walnuts and soya beans)
  • Zinc: required for hormone balance (Sources include pumpkin seeds, nuts and wholegrain cereals)
  • Calcium: essential for bones and teeth, nervous system and blood clotting (Sources include tofu, pulses and dark leafy greens)

 

Tasty treats

That’s the information and science-y part done, here’s a couple of delicious vegan recipes to enjoy during pregnancy:

 

Gorgeous Gazpacho

Ingredients:

  • 3 tomatoes
  • 1 small onion
  • 2 stalks of celery
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 200ml vegetable stock
  • 1 tbsp balsamic
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Method:

  • Chop the vegetables, put all of the ingredients in your blender and pulse. It’s as easy as that!

This is the kind of thing you could well get a craving for, so make plenty of what you like and enjoy. Don’t worry about the mess when you devour it. It’s just like cleaning up ketchup stains, and if you’d like to know how to remove ketchup from clothes just click here.

 

Soya bean and chickpea salad

Ingredients:

Part A

  • 220g soya beans
  • 2 cans of chickpeas
  • 1 pepper
  • 50g chopped carrots
  • 1 minced garlic clove
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 3 tbsp dried cranberries

Part B

  • ¼ tsp oregano and rosemary
  • 1 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Method:

  • Combine the ingredient in part A in one bowl and part B in another bowl. Whisk up the ingredients in part B and add them to part A. Toss gently and let it chill for 30 minutes or so. Delicious!

It’s clear that you can eat vegan throughout your pregnancy and have a vibrant baby without struggling. Always consult your doctor about your diet and supplementation, make a plan and good luck!

 

 

 

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