If you are expecting a baby and you actually are curious about the question: vegetarian diet during first trimester of pregnancy. You can find a lot of useful info on this topic, as well as tips, guidance, opinions, and answers to questions about pregnancy, proper nutrition and eating plans.
Yes, you can! You can be a great vegan mom, without fear that your child will grow up nutrient-deficient.
The consumer society tries to convince us that we will not be able to continue with a vegan diet if we become pregnant, but this is not the case. Whether you are vegan, vegetarian, carnivore or omnivore, you will have to take care of what you eat to maintain a balanced diet. But you should know that none of these diets is better on a nutritional level than the others. p >
So, if you have a vegan diet because you consider it ethical and unquestionable, you don’t have to abandon your principles to take care of your baby. In fact, you can take better care of him if you stand firm in what you believe and instill in him a way of life that you are convinced of.
In this article we will tell you everything about how to stay firm in veganism without neglecting the needs of your body and those of your future child .
The characteristics of the vegan diet
A balanced vegan diet is based on healthy grains, vegetables, fruits, proteins, and fats. This pillar of nutrients must be maintained during pregnancy, although it will be necessary to add more nutritional quality since the body needs more energy to be able to support the growth of the baby.
When you get pregnant, you ask yourself thousands of questions. Many of them are related to your diet. You should know that having an idea of what the different nutrients that you include in your diet provide you can help you consume exactly what your body needs to stay strong and healthy and to ensure a healthy development for the fetus. On the other hand, you should find out about the various supplements that you should include in your diet to have a proper pregnancy.
It is important that you have a balanced eating plan for three months before you get pregnant. Remember that this is the time the body needs to adjust to changes and take advantage of the new tools it has to develop. In this way, your body’s stores of nutrients will support your baby’s growth and early development.
Create your own food plan
When your non-vegan friends find out about your pregnancy, they will probably tell you that you will have to give in to your eating habit (few people understand that ours is not a healthy option but an ethical stance) and they will recommend that you resume eating minimally dairy and meat.
To counter these comments I come to tell you, for your good, that the American Dietetic Association has stated in a recent report that vegetarian or vegan diets are absolutely healthy. The important thing is that they are properly planned. They also added that this type of diet positively helps prevent disease and is appropriate for any stage of an individual’s life cycle. Emphasizing even in pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood and adolescence. And for individuals who perform any type of activity, including people who perform intense physical activity, such as athletes. On the other hand, they argue that certain foods such as beans, legumes and nuts are the perfect substitutes for meat .
Therefore, you must be calm. You do not have to change your diet, although you do have to review it in detail to see if you are eating the right way and make the appropriate changes, if necessary.
Among the most important nutrients for pregnant women are folic acid, protein and vitamin B12. The first two can be obtained by procuring a diet more appropriate to your condition, but the B12 may have to be acquired through supplements. In any case, it is common for all vegans, pregnant or not, to take supplements of this vitamin, so I do not think it is news for you.
On the other hand, you should also pay attention to your daily calcium dose, for which it is convenient for you to consume adequate vegetables and you can also use beverages with additives such as soy milk, almonds and others.
The importance of a good diet in pregnancy
You must bear in mind that being pregnant means having to eat for two people. Anyway, one of them is still very small so it will not require the same proportions as you; This means that your diet will not vary completely, with respect to the pattern of a normal diet.
During the first trimester you should not increase your calorie intake too much, but you should do so during the second trimester (an extra 340 calories per day) and, from the third trimester, (about 452 extra daily calories).On the other hand, you have to avoid consuming excess fat and sugar, as well as large amounts of calories.
From the following proportions you can develop a daily diet that is appropriate to your condition and allows you to have a healthy pregnancy.
- 9 servings of cereals, whole grains and breads
- 4 servings of vegetables (choose at least one dark green vegetable)
- 4 servings of fruits
- 5 servings legumes, soy and non-dairy milk
- 1/2 portion nuts (nuts, seeds, wheat germ)
- Remember to include a reliable source of vitamin B 12 (prenatal vitamins or fortified non-dairy milk and cereals)
Essential nutrients during pregnancy
When thoroughly analyzing the ingredients of your diet, you should consider what each food brings you. For this you must know how much you need each day on a daily basis.
Among the nutrients of a healthy diet are:
The recommended is a daily intake of 1,000 mg / day for women between 19 and 50 during pregnancy. This ingredient is easy to find on a vegan diet. According to various studies, the absorption of calcium from foods of plant origin is higher than that obtained from dairy products, although myths always indicate otherwise. The best sources of calcium include tofu, soybeans, green leafy vegetables, broccoli, figs, tahini, and certain fortified non-dairy milks. If you include all these ingredients in your daily diet, it will not be difficult for you to meet the recommended requirements of this supplement during pregnancy.
- Essential fatty acids
A daily intake of 1.1 g / day is recommended for women aged 19 to 50, and 1.4 g / day during pregnancy. This element, known as alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) is essential in the diet since it is what provides the body with omega-3 and omega-6 acids, which allow good blood clotting, among other things. Among the vegan nutrients that contain it are flax seeds, flaxseed oil, walnut and soybean oil and green leafy vegetables. The only fatty acid that is more difficult to obtain through a balanced vegan diet is DHA, essential for the formation of the nervous system of the fetus. For this reason, you may be recommended to consume a supplement made from microalgae.
- Folic acid
It is necessary to prevent neural tube defects and serves multiple functions. It is essential, especially during the first weeks of pregnancy. Therefore, it is recommended that you start consuming it before you get pregnant to make sure you have the amount that the baby will need to begin to form. The way to get this acid is through the consumption of green leafy vegetables, legumes and certain foods fortified with folic acid. In any case, it is advisable to take a multivitamin that provides at least 400 mg / day.
It is necessary for an adequate development of the placenta and the fetus and to maintain the increase in the volume of maternal blood. The recommended dose during pregnancy is 27 mg / day. Whatever your diet, it is recommended that you adapt to iron supplements as it is difficult to meet the growing needs of the body. If you have a vegan or even vegetarian diet, you should include a series of plant-based foods rich in iron.
Key sources include whole and enriched grains, legumes, nuts, dark green vegetables, dried fruits, and molasses. If you increase the proportion of foods rich in Vitamin C in your diet, you can also increase the absorption of iron from the foods that offer it.
It is recommended that an adult woman consume about 46 g / day. This amount should be increased around the second trimester of pregnancy, reaching 71 g / day. This number may vary around the particular needs of each pregnant woman, therefore you should consult your doctor to recommend what changes to make in your diet to ingest the amount of protein you need. Protein sources include whole grains, beans and legumes, soy-based products, some vegetables, and nuts.
- Vitamin B 12
This supplement is essential. During pregnancy you should only increase your dose by a minimum percentage, going from 2.4 mg / day to 2 , 6 mg / day.This vitamin can be found in fortified cereals, meat substitutes, non-dairy milk, and nutritional yeast. To find out if foods are truly fortified, check the labels before purchasing. It is advisable, however, that you add a supplement known as a prenatal vitamin that contains vitamin B 12, to be totally sure of providing everything you need to your baby.
- Other nutrients
The rest of the nutrients do not vary when pregnant. The recommended amount of vitamin D will continue to be 5 g / day. A good exposure to the sun (during non-harmful hours) may be enough to acquire it. You can also find it in fortified foods. Another supplement is zinc that should increase a little from the 8 mg / day recommended for adult women, it will increase to 11 mg / day during pregnancy. This element is found in prenatal vitamins and also in legumes, nuts, whole grains, and cereals.
Your daily vegan diet
Here we present a possible option for your vegan diet during pregnancy.
- 1/2 cup of oatmeal with Agave honey
- 1 slice of whole wheat toast with fruit jam
- 1 cup of fortified soy milk
- 1/2 cup of calcium-fortified orange juice
- 1/2 vegan whole wheat donut with margarine
- 1 banana
- 1 Veggie burger on whole wheat bread with mustard and ketchup
- 1 cup steamed kale
- 1 medium apple
- 1 cup of fortified soy milk
- 3/4 cup ready-to-eat cereal with half a cup of blueberries
- 1 cup of fortified soy milk
- 2/4 cup of tofu sautéed with 1 cup of vegetables
- 1 cup of brown rice
- 1 medium orange
Snack at night
- whole grain crackers with 2 tbsp. peanut butter
- 1 glass of apple juice
By following this diet you will be able to acquire 2,500 calories . This meal meets the RDA for iron, calcium, zinc, vitamin B12, folate, vitamin D, thiamine, riboflavin, and niacin.
On the other hand, some vegan foods that can provide you with 10 g of protein if you consume the indicated intake are:
- Peanuts & # 8211; 39g
- Almonds & # 8211; 47g
- Chickpeas, dried and boiled & # 8211; 119g
- Steamed tofu & # 8211; 124g
- Peas, boiled & # 8211; 159g
- Whole wheat bread & # 8211; 109g
- Brown rice, boiled & # 8211; 109g
- Spinach, boiled & # 8211; 454g
How to plan your meals for a healthy vegan pregnancy
The ideal way to plan your meals is based on nutritious whole grains and knowing that cooked green leafy vegetables are an inexhaustible source of nutrition. Without forgetting, of course, the important nutritional contribution that dried fruits and nuts offer you.
Finally, remember that you must maintain a constant rate of weight gain, this will ensure a direct and stable relationship between the baby’s growth and feeding. Ask your doctor about the recommended amount that you should acquire throughout the entire pregnancy and try to follow his indications to avoid problems derived from a sudden increase, being overweight or underweight during pregnancy.
As you can see it is not difficult to be a vegan mother . You can offer your baby adequate growth without contributing to animal exploitation. Thus, you will be a more ethical mother and you will be able to collaborate with the welfare of animals on the planet. Can you live this precious experience that is pregnancy more satisfactorily?
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