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Oct 06

The Benefits of a Vegan Pregnancy

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vegan pregnancyAll essential vitamins and minerals can easily be found in a wide variety of vegan foods, including green leafy vegetables, nuts, seeds, lentils, pulses, beans, soy, whole grains and flax. So there is no need to worry about how to get enough protein, calcium, iron, omega-3 fatty acids or vitamin D. The only exception is vitamin B12, which can be easily supplemented.

Actors Alicia Silverstone and Emily Deschanel have both had vegan pregnancies. Alicia says, “All of the vegan pregnancies I have witnessed have been way smoother than those of my non-vegan friends. … From my point of view, the more vegan you are, the more healthy you are and that makes your pregnancy go more easily and helps your baby to be super duper healthy!”

 

 

  1. Ward off morning sickness: Morning sickness is one of the least fun aspects of pregnancy, and interestingly enough, a vegan diet during pregnancy may alleviate some of those symptoms. Some studies have connected a diet high in meat and dairy with more severe symptoms of morning sickness. The science is this: Morning sickness is the body’s natural attempt to protect the fetus from unhealthy substances, physically clearing those substances (and the food that contains them) out of the mother’s body. Many of the chemicals that are cleared out most commonly come from meat and dairy products, because these products are at a higher risk for contamination. Thus, eating a vegan diet (ideally organic) may reduce or totally eliminate the symptoms of morning sickness. Unlike meat and dairy product, plants can help to rid the body of toxins, ultimately providing the fetus with lower amounts of unhealthy chemicals that we consume in our food.
    In addition, a vegan diet ensures that the mother is not consuming the foods that are commonly known to be harmful for fetuses, including fish and seafood, deli meats, and unpasteurized dairy products. Each of these can put a fetus at risk for birth defects, and eating a vegan diet guarantees that none will be an issue.

 

  1. A healthier, happier you: A vegan diet is great for your health! According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, vegans are less likely to develop heart diseasecancerdiabetes, or high blood pressure than meat-eaters are. Vegans get all the nutrients that they need to be healthy, such as plant protein, fiber, and minerals, without all the nasty stuff in meat that slows you down and makes you sick, such as cholesterol and saturated animal fat.

 

  1. It’s the best way to help animals: Every vegan saves the lives of countless animals each year. There is simply no easier way to help animals and prevent suffering than by choosing vegan foods over meateggs, and dairy products.

 

If you are considering making the switch to a vegan diet- please visit peta.org.uk where you can order a free vegan starter kit and find out more on how to have a healthy and happy vegan pregnancy.

 

PETA supporter and vegan mum, Kimberley Brewser says:

 

There was no doubt in my mind that a vegan pregnancy was what was best for me and, more importantly, my precious bundle.

 

Apart from my initial morning sickness, I thoroughly enjoyed my pregnancy. I’ve never felt better inside and out.

 

For any food that I craved, there was a vegan alternative, so I never felt that I was missing out. I always made sure that I had my favourite foods in the house if I had a craving. I ate very well.

 

While some of my pregnant friends suffered with low iron levels and high blood pressure, my iron levels were high and my blood pressure was fantastic throughout.

 

I’m a dancer and continued to perform at shows and dance throughout my pregnancy. I had so much energy. I was dancing four days before I gave birth.

 

Hadley was a healthy 7 lbs, 11 ozs when he was born. Now at 15 months, he continues to thrive on a healthy, varied and colourful vegan diet. He’s a happy, healthy, beautiful little boy.

 

Would I recommend a vegan diet to expectant mothers? Definitely!