I think that any woman is different, which means that each pregnant woman has different needs, and there are also different tastes in the diet. Some of them use sweet taste during their pregnancies, some extremely salty and some sour. It also depends on each woman to decide to eat meat or be a vegetarian. Of course, however, it must pay attention to the replacement of all the necessary vitamins, minerals, proteins, substances obtained from meat products.
My experience, as a pregnant vegetarian, is pleasant, as I correctly replaced the substances that I supposed to get from the meat. I regularly went to gynaecological examinations and examinations of urine and blood. This way of eating was good for me and I felt light, full of energy and healthy. I have been a vegetarian for many years and I have not been missing meat, so I also kept my eating habits during my pregnancy.
How Did I Replace Proteins, Vitamins and Minerals Which Are Obtained with Meat?
Meat is a source of protein; the body also draws iron from it, vitamin B12, calcium and zinc. I replaced the need for vitamin B12 by eggs, milk and algae. Calcium is not only in meat, but also found in milk and dairy products, it can also be obtained from carrots, dark green vegetables, plums, etc. I replaced the need for protein with soy, whey, mushrooms and walnuts. The true wealth of proteins is also protein crops. I enjoyed beans, chickpeas and lentils from legumes. I got the iron from dark green vegetables, such as broccoli and spinach, berries and certain legumes. I used whole grain cereals to replace zinc. In my diet, all dairy products are included, also eggs. I do not eat fish and seafood.
I feel great, full of energy. Since I have regularly replaced all the necessary substances that are obtained in meat, I have no problems with blood. All that remained the same during my pregnancy. At the end of my pregnancy alone, I was only slightly tired, but this was perfectly normal for any pregnancy.
Supervision of My Doctor and Gynaecologist
My doctor and gynaecologist supervised my health all the time, even before giving birth, and so it was during my pregnancy. All the time, I was advised and supervised by my condition, that I remained healthy and that the development of the baby was proceeding as needed. At that time, a review of urine and blood was constantly carried out, so it was necessary to go to the examinations regularly, in order to control the health status of the mom-to-be and child. After the birth, a dietitian visited me at the maternity clinic and informed me with supplements and suggested some menus.
In addition to a healthy and balanced diet, I also enjoyed nutritional supplements. At the beginning of my pregnancy, I was taking folic acid, which gynaecologists recommend to those moms-to-be who are not vegetarians. Taking folic acid is extremely important for the first trimester, as it replaces vitamins and minerals. Due to a deficiency in vitamins and a broken balance during my pregnancy, folic acid prevents disturbances in the development of the baby. Some gynaecologists recommend the use of folic acid for three months before getting pregnant. I used the pills myself – according to the gynaecologist – until the seventh month then I added Omega 3 fatty acids, iron and vitamin B12 to my diet. For all supplements, it is necessary to check if they are suitable for pregnant women, since the moms-to-be are fed to both, and therefore it must provide a healthy and balanced diet that includes enough vitamins and minerals that are needed for the development of a baby.
How Was My Decision Accepted by Others?
My family and friends accepted it a few years ago, as they saw that I was still full of energy and healthy. They all supported me during my pregnancy. I think if I want to eat meat, I will eat, because it is necessary to listen to my body, so that we take care of our health and thus for the health of the child. During my pregnancy this did not happen and I did not eat meat, because I did not feel any need for it.
Useful Advice to Moms-to-be – Vegetarians
The mom-to-be-Vegetarians are often under the guise of criticising other mothers, as the meat is healthy and indispensable for the development of the child. I think that each one chooses his own way of eating and taking care of his health and the health of the child, which is the most important for every mother. The meat may contain hormones and antibiotics due to improper animal feeding and may not be as healthy as it would be recommended. For this reason, I recommend pregnant women and vegetarians to remain faithful to their diet and to listen to their body, as this will ensure the well-being of themselves and their children. I emphasise, however, the correct replacement of the necessary substances for the proper development of the baby and consultation with a doctor and a gynaecologist.