Advantages of Being Vegetarian Sample Daily Menu for Pregnant Vegetarians
Advantages of Being Vegetarian Sample Daily Menu for Pregnant Vegetarians, it is apparent that your nutritional needs increase when you are pregnant. However, you only need approximately 300 more calories than normal during this time, so it is imperative that you make wise food choices and eat nutrient-dense food. (“34- The Special Needs of the Pregnant Vegetarian – Chef Asili”)
A good start is to ensure that you are eating plenty of protein. Your need for protein increases about 30 percent during pregnancy, but most vegetarian women eat more than enough protein in their regular diets. “Soy proteins, beans and legumes are wonderful vegetarian sources of protein.” (“The Dietary Needs of the Pregnant Vegetarian – HGH And You”)
You need to also step up your calcium intake. Each day you need to be eating at least four servings of calcium-rich foods like broccoli, calcium-fortified soy milk, tofu, and dark green leafy vegetables. (“Blogger – BREMA”)
Sunlight stimulates your body to naturally produce vitamin D, and it is the easiest way to ensure you get an adequate amount each day. You only need about 20 minutes directly on your face and hands two to three times per week, when the sun is weakest. If you are not able to get out into the sun, be sure to incorporate vitamin-D rich foods into your daily diet by choosing fortified cereals or using a supplement. (“Blogger – BREMA”)
Take a look at your iron intake, as it is a vital mineral during your pregnancy, especially the last half. Choose beans, dark green leafy vegetables, nuts and seeds, or fortified breads and cereals. You might also want to consider supplementing to ensure you get the required amount.
Vitamin B-12 is also an important nutrient during your pregnancy, but it is difficult to find in most plant-based foods. “Select fortified cereals or soy milk, brewer’s yeast, and consider a multivitamin with an adequate level to ensure your body gets the amount it needs.” (“Blogger – BREMA”)
And though zinc is difficult to come by in a strict vegan or vegetarian diet, the need for it increases during pregnancy. Whole grains and legumes are wise choices to obtain this nutrient, but you again may need to supplement to make sure you are getting what you need. (“VEGETABLES BENEFITS”)
If you eat a good variety of nutritious foods that provide the right number of calories for a healthy weight gain, you should have no problem getting the vitamins and minerals your body needs at this marvelous time. And though many women do choose to take a prenatal vitamin daily, they should not be a substitute for good nutrition. (“Blogger – BREMA”) Develop a cooperative relationship with your healthcare provider who supports your vegetarian lifestyle and consider consulting a nutritionist when necessary.
Sample Daily Menu for Pregnant Vegetarians
Though your nutritional needs increase now that you are pregnant, your pregnancy vegetarian diet should not have to change all that much. With some careful planning to ensure your caloric, vitamin, and mineral needs are met, you can still enjoy a rich variety of nutrient-dense delicious foods and help give your baby a nutritious jump-start. Consider the following daily menu for ideas and inspiration. (“Sample Daily Menu for Pregnant Vegetarians – WELLNISITY”)
|1/2 cup oatmeal with maple syrup 1 slice whole wheat toast with fruit spread 1 cup soy milk 1/2 cup calcium and vitamin D fortified orange juice||1/2 whole wheat bagel with margarine Banana||“Veggie burger on whole wheat bun with mustard and catsup 1 cup steamed collard greens medium apple 1 cup soy milk” (“Being A Vegetarian While Pregnant – Streetdirectory”)||3/4 cup ready-to-eat cereal with 1/2 cup blueberries 1 cup soy milk||3/4 cup tofu stir-fried with 1 cup vegetables 1 cup brown rice medium orange||Whole grain crackers with 2 Tbsp peanut butter 4 ounces apple juice|
If morning sickness is giving you fits during your pregnancy, try eating low fat, high carbohydrate nutrient-dense foods. “These are digested more quickly and stay in the stomach for less time giving less time for queasiness.” (“Sample Daily Menu for Pregnant Vegetarians – WELLNISITY”) Remember to eat often. Sometimes nausea is really hunger in disguise.
Be sure to drink juice, water, or soy milk if you cannot eat solid food. Keep trying to eat whatever you can. If you are unable to eat or drink the appropriate amounts of foods or fluids for 24 hours or more, contact your healthcare provider.
Going Vegetarian During Your Pregnancy
Now that you are pregnant, you are wondering if your decision to become vegetarian can still be conducted successfully during your pregnancy. And while it is possible for you to obtain all the nutrients your body will need during pregnancy through a well-planned, nutrient-dense vegetarian diet, careful planning and observation will be crucial to your overall success transitioning to vegetarianism during your pregnancy. In other words: take it slow and be smart!
A good vegetarian diet has a wide variety of fresh fruits, vegetables, grains, beans, lentils, nuts and some eggs and dairy or their equivalent if you choose. “Fast food, highly processed junk foods, and canned fruits and vegetables are eaten rarely if at all.” (“Going Vegetarian during your Pregnancy | by kokoshungsan …”)
It is imperative that you make wise food choices at this crucial time, since a pregnant woman only needs approximately 300 more calories per day and about 10-16 extra grams of protein; however, the body’s need for certain nutrients increases significantly.
Every bite you take is important when you are pregnant. While the RDAs (recommended daily allowances) for all nutrients increase, especially important are folic acid, iron, zinc, and vitamin B-12. Attention to adequate amounts of vitamin B-12 is crucial for vegetarians who choose not to eat eggs and dairy.
Work closely with your healthcare professional during this transition. The changeover from a meat-eating to a vegetarian diet can be rough on your body as it goes through a detoxification process during the transition. (“Going Vegetarian during your Pregnancy | by kokoshungsan …”) So, you want to ensure your baby is getting all the nutrients it needs currently and is growing and developing at a healthy rate. Start very slowly; only one or two days per week eating a vegetarian diet. Gradually work in soy and plant-based proteins into your diet, and little by little use them to replace proteins obtained from eating meat products. Be sure to supplement your diet with a quality prenatal supplement, and get adequate amounts of exercise and exposure to sunlight to promote your body to naturally produce vitamin D. (“Going Vegetarian during your Pregnancy | by kokoshungsan …”)
With careful planning, observation, and your healthcare professional’s guidance, the transition to vegetarianism during your pregnancy can be a cleansing and healthy start for both you and your baby to a lifetime of optimal health.
Best Wishes, Coyalita
Behavioral Health Rehabilitative Specialist
See Tomorrow: “The Healing Effects a Vegetarian Diet Has on Your Post-Baby Body”
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