A Vegetarian Pregnancy
A Vegetarian Diet During Pregnancy
Is a vegetarian pregnancy diet safe for you and your developing baby? You will be happy to know that eating the right vegetarian food items can supply all the nutrients required for the healthy growth of your unborn baby. Doctors state that the three most essential nutrients for pregnant women are Vitamin B12, Vitamin D and iron. Meat and fish are believed to be excellent sources of Vitamin B12 and Iron. However, vegan mothers-to be can substitute these non-vegetarian food items for other options that are more in line with their lifestyle choice. Of course, proteins, minerals and other vitamins are also required by the body, so food items that deliver all this essential goodness should be regularly consumed.
Wholesome Vegetarian Foods
Let’s find out how you can use your vegetarian pregnancy diet to obtain all the beneficial substances that individuals usually glean from non-vegetarian foods!
Excellent Sources of Iron
Stock up on the following food items to get an adequate supply of iron:
- Leafy, dark-green vegetables.
- Fortified breakfast cereals with added Iron
- Eggs ( For those vegetarians who consume them)
- Dried fruits (for instance apricots)
- Whole-meal bread
Excellent Sources of Vitamin B12
Vegan and vegetarian mothers-to-be can get their required daily dose of vitamin B12 from the following:
- Fortified soya drinks
- Fortified breakfast cereals
- Marmite, or other yeast extracts
While all of the above can be consumed by vegetarians, those on the vegan pregnancy diet can obtain the required Vitamin B12 from the first three options.
Excellent Sources of Vitamin D
Pregnant vegans and vegetarians can gather all the vitamin D they need from all-natural sunlight, and Vitamin D supplements. Since the baby needs Vitamin D to develop and grow, having supplements is absolutely imperative.
Excellent Sources of Calcium
While vegetarians can obtain calcium from dairy products such as milk and cheese, vegans need alternative options to get their daily calcium dose. Vegans should look into the following food options:
- Dried Fruit
- Leafy, dark green vegetables
- Fortified soya
- Fortified rice
- Fortified oat drinks
- Sesame seeds
You can also ask your health practitioner for suitable calcium supplements!
Avoid the Following
Pregnant women should avoid alcohol, excessive intake of caffeine and salty foods. Additionally, and we just can’t stress this enough: do not attempt to lose weight during your pregnancy!
Whether you are on a vegan pregnancy diet or a vegetarian one, remember to consult your health practitioner about your dietary decisions. It is imperative for you and your developing baby to get adequate quantities of the essential nutrients required for normal growth. So stock up on those proteins, minerals, vitamins and other nutrients and enjoy a happy, healthy pregnancy!