Vegan Diet and Pregnancy

pme pregnant blue white dress

The vegan diet and pregnancy can go beautifully together. When we become pregnant as vegan women, there is no way we will start to consider going back to the omnivore diet because of this life-change. We know that being vegan, or plant-based, is much better for us than any other way of eating. This way of eating while pregnant is great for the baby too. A fetus can really thrive well on plants. It is good to make sure you include a few key foods, almost every day though, to make sure your baby gets the best opportunity to grow and do super well. 

This is me there on the picture, I am currently in my third trimester, 7th month of a vegan pregnancy and loving it. Over here in Portugal having a good time. In a few weeks I will be traveling uo to Sweden to stay a while with my sister and then I will head over to Finland to have the birth. 

When it comes to the vegan diet and pregnancy, it is important to eat a variety of foods rather than just sticking to habits of having the same thing day in and out. Apples are great, but how about changing it up and having a pear or some apricots the next day? This is important for our microbiome, for our gut-health that will benefit the baby when it is born. During a natural birt, baby gets the foundation for the gut bacterias from the mother, so we need to make sure ours is very healthy, to pass on good bacteria. that way we avoid at least some of the problems with gas in the newborn, and probably other stomach issues going forward.  (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4681407/)

Iron, B12 and Calcium

berries

Iron, B12 and calcium are three things to pay more attention to when you are a vegan pregnant woman. Iron helps to transport oxygen to the fetus, B12 helps you feel less tired during pregnancy and calcium helps to build the bones of your baby. Calcium you don't need to have so much more of than you should usually have, but the thing about us vegans is that we don't always really pay attention to calcium that much, but now is the time to do so. We often get quite a good amount from foods like spinach and almonds, but now it is important make sure you are having enough of it every day. Folate is something we often get quite a lot of as we tend to eat quite a lot of fresh produce daily. If thats not you, go ahead and start now.

Which VEGAN DIET SUPPLEMENTS Should YOu focus on?

  • Pre-natal vitamins, if you find food-based vitamins, get them, otherwise the regular kind is fine.
  • Some kind of vegan protein powder that is as natural as possible, you dont need much but a teaspoon every other day or so. I like pea protein. You can also have a protein bar with some pea protein in it, I like one with peanut butter, dates and pea protein.
  • Omega 3 and DHA algae oil supplemnt
  • Plant-based milk fortified with calcium, have at least 1 cup a day and best to split it up and have on two to three sepatate occasions during the day. Because we can only absorb a limited amount of calcium in one sitting. You could for example add some to your tea and later add some to your oatmeal.
  • B12 and Iron, optional. Check if your are low in any of these and if so, supplementation could be wise.


good foods for pregnancy

mushrooms pregnancy vegan diet

How does a vegan pregnancy diet look like? There are some foods we can definetley focus on to give our fetus what it needs to grow and become a strong little human being in there. I write about that here:

Plant Based Diet and Pregnancy - Healthiest Foods

There you will get all details on the nutrients and foods to focus and and you will also find out how I eat. There is also a meal plan service we have on this site, where you can rquest a meal plan for yourself to have a super healthy vegan preganancy. 

When I became pregnant in 2001, I all of a sudden started thinking about what I was eating. before that I had quite a mainstream young adult diet, except not much or even any meat. I started researching about nutrition, because I wanted to make sure I ate the best way possible to help my baby thrive. I also became interested in organic food and organic products. At that time, 23 years ago, I was not vegan yet, but already quite plant-based but not fully. Me and my son who was growing inside me that year, went vegan together 9 years later.

At the moment I am pregnant again and this time I am even more careful, I make sure I have everything I need every day, all plant-based because I know that is best for my growing fetus. Organic, vegan whole foods and home-made food is the key.

Read more about how I eat here.

Vegan Diet and Pregnancy
Remember to Breathe and spend time in nature

beach sunset

Its not only about what you eat, although it is a very important part of the puzzle. Something else to thinnk about though is that it is important to breathe well, breathe deeply. Remind yourself to breathe when you are concentrating on something. we want our baby to have enough oxygen at all times. Also, dont let other people stress you out. Forget all the drama around you. If you have to listen to any of it, just do so but dont engage too much, dont start feeling too sorry for anyone or stressed because someone else is stressed. Take care of your own mental stability and just flow through life with ease. Your baby will be happy about that. Also spend time outdoors in nature every chance you get and take regular walks. I often take the stairs instead of the elevator, even when pregnant, just to get a little extra excersise in. 

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