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Thread: How was your vegan pregnancy?

  1. #1

    Default How was your vegan pregnancy?

    I'm curious to know if there is any correlations whatsoever between eating a vegan diet and having an "easy" pregnancy. What I mean by easy is not miserable like so many people seem to be while pregnant.
    I am 35 weeks and feeling great. My first trimester was rough, energy wise but I didn't have any morning sickness. I also haven't had any strange cravings at all (it seems that omnivores on some of the pregnancy forums I've joined crave mostly high-fat, fast food and I just don't get it). I have had some heartburn and the typical back pains and sleeping issues but that's about it.

    Am I just lucky or could there be a correlation between diet and pregnancy symptoms?
    Thanks for the input

  2. #2
    BunkyVegan's Avatar
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    I haven't had any babies (yet ), so I'm not your target audience here. But I have heard a number of times that a vegan diet can make pregnancy easier with less negative symptoms and complications, although I think most of this is based on personal experience and may be anecdotal as I don't know of any published studies that look into this issue. It seems logical to me that diet would be a factor because whole plant foods have a much higher nutrient density than animal products and are easier to digest, and when you are properly nourished and your digestion is running smoothly it makes everything else run more smoothly as well!

    Every now and then when I'm dreaming about having babies, I go to this site: http://www.veganhealth.org/articles/realveganchildren
    It's very inspiring to see gorgeous healthy vegan kids! Also, some of the parents talk about how easy their pregnancy was or how quickly they recovered.

    Congratulations on your pregnancy! lol
    It is just like man's vanity and impertinence to call an animal dumb because it is dumb to his dull perceptions ~ Mark Twain

  3. #3
    fortified twinkle's Avatar
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    I'm 36 weeks pregnant. I did get some morning sickness in the first trimester, although I was only actually physically sick once and that was because I drank too much water before the ultrasound! I was also pretty tired, and the relaxin didn't do my hips any favours (but I already had a problem with them), although thank goodness that seems to have eased up over the past few weeks.

    I didn't get any cravings but I thought fruits like mangoes tasted a lot better than normal and went through a phase of eating a lot of those. I've probably been eating too many sweet things. I haven't really fancied much food and have had quite a small appetite in general, which I've found incredibly strange as I've always been pretty greedy before (I was overweight before I got pregnant so that's not a massively bad thing, and I've still put on about 14lb overall, although I expect a lot of that is water/extra blood/the baby!).

    I too have had heartburn, and a bit of back ache, and after a long car journey I got swollen ankles which was a bit alarming, but apart from that I guess I've had a fairly good pregnancy so far
    "If you don't have a song to sing you're okay, you know how to get along humming" Waltz (better than fine) - Fiona Apple

  4. #4

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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    I'm 25 weeks pregnant (i.e. just started my 7th month) and so far all has been well. Had intense tiredness in the first trimester which also occurred for quite a few weeks into the second trimester. No morning sickness as far as throwing up is concerned, but did get nauseas fairly often in first trimester - although it was mild.

    Discomfort is limited to the weight of my growing belly (my skin and tummy muscles aren't used to this big adjustment) and how much activity I do (walking around too much or standing for too long can bring on some gravity-related pains in my belly). Sometimes at night I get numb-ish legs, but it may be due to my sedentiary daytime desk work or possibly panties getting too tight now and affecting bloodflow. My occasional headaches seem linked to how well hydrated I am. Other than that, no nausea, no backache, no swollen feet. All the 'negatives' are either my own cause (activity/non-activity or hydration) and are self-treatable or are minor and unavoidable (gravity and skin stretching).

    First trimester cravings were fruit and avos and lots of water. I had a brief cheese craving (!!) in the early 2nd trimester, followed by a sweet tooth for a few weeks. Other than that, no cravings really. Aches and pains here and there, but no real issues. I've found that my tiredness seems almost directly linked to whether I've had enough protein combos (legumes + grains) as I don't consume them daily, but rather every 2 or 3 days, so if I have not had them for say 4 or 5 days, I get so tired I need an hour's afternoon nap!

    (I should mention also that I had two miscarriages (11 weeks and 7 weeks) before I went vegan, so perhaps the vegan diet helped this one stay? Hard to tell. Those two pregnancies felt very uncomfortable and did not feel healthy - I had heart palpitations, chest pains, etc. and a massive sweet tooth all the time.)

    Hope this helps. I realise I've only just started my third trimester so it's possible all can change, but I don't suspect it will.

  5. #5

    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    I'd been vegan 16 years' when I got pregnant and I had terrible sickness all through pregnancy, I was even throwing up during labour! Hardly kept any food down during the whole 9 months' but had a healthy baby girl who is now nearly 8 years' old and left the hospital weighing less than I did before I got pregnant
    Women are like teabags. We don't know our true strength until we are in hot water!

  6. #6

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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    I'm 30 weeks here (yay to see other vegan mommies to be!) and have had pretty good luck so far. I was absolutely exhausted for most of the first trimester, but bounced back about 14 weeks or so. Have craved orange juice like mad...it even helped the morning nauseous feeling! Only complications so far have been a UTI (yick) and a torn muscle just this past week, plus the normal slight backache and recently, heartburn. I'm not sure I'd attribute it to a vegan diet though necessarily. A healthful diet and good planning beforehand regarding exercise/supplements, etc.

    I have read a couple of places that vegan women have much much lower rates of pre-eclampsia that omnivorous women. There have been a couple of studies at The Farm, a mostly vegan community in Tennessee, USA on this subject too. In 20 years, they had only 1! case of preeclampsia.

    Looking forward to the next phase now.

    Are y'all planning on giving birth at home or in a hospital? We're hoping to make some decisions in the next 3 or 4 weeks, but it's sooo hard!

  7. #7

    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    Quote refinnej View Post

    Are y'all planning on giving birth at home or in a hospital? We're hoping to make some decisions in the next 3 or 4 weeks, but it's sooo hard!
    We hired a doula but I am still giving birth in a hospital setting. I really wanted a water birth but I might save that for Baby #2

  8. #8
    maggielassie's Avatar
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    Well-done, vegan moms! Congratulations.

    And to think that my meat-eating family constantly tells me "Never have babies; you cannot have a healthy pregnancy on a vegan diet." I still don't know if I wanna have children when I'll finish Uni (I'm a lesbian but I know there are other ways), but to see how you're all doing fine (and even better than meat-eating counterparts) shows even more what omnivores say is just a crock of s***...
    "The animals of the world exist for their own reasons. They were not made for humans any more than black people were made for whites or women for men." ~Alice Walker.

  9. #9
    Haniska's Avatar
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    I'm pleasantly surprised that my doctor is not concerned about my diet Still first trimester here. Craved water is all.
    it is wrong for a man to eat anything that causes someone else to stumble

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    fortified twinkle's Avatar
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    Hooray for not getting a hard time from your doctor, and congratulations on your news Haniska
    "If you don't have a song to sing you're okay, you know how to get along humming" Waltz (better than fine) - Fiona Apple

  11. #11
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    Quote Haniska View Post
    I'm pleasantly surprised that my doctor is not concerned about my diet Still first trimester here. Craved water is all.
    AWESOME!!!

    I want a baby!!! everyone i know is pregnant right now!!
    "i'm rejecting my reflection, cause i hate the way it judges me."

  12. #12

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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    I've had three and was vegan for the last two. The first pregnancy and birth were rather sad, its not appropriate to go into detail here but my baby's problems were nothing to do with being veggie at the time or having a home birth. The next two were fine, healthy babies and I was in good health for all three except for gestational diabetes with the last. I was given no trouble about my diet by any professional and the dietetician I was seeing for the last one because of the GD was impressed by my diet and reckoned that vegans generally eat better and are better informed about diet than the general population.

    Wishing all pregnant visitors to this thread a healthy and happy pregnancy and labour

  13. #13
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    i didn't have any morning sickness or cravings didn't feel ill or anything, just uncomfy at the end!

    i gave birth in hospital i chose it because i wanted to be around help should it be needed, i did end up needing a c section due to tranverse lie a cord covering the cervix and my waters about to break..i got to hospital at 9cms!
    if i was doing it again, if there were any problems in pregnancy i would straight off go for another c section.
    if not i want a home birth. my opinion of the care within a hospital is low after my experince, the one on one care that comes with a home birth is much better and in my opinion much safer than a hospital birth.
    be the change you wish to see in the world.

  14. #14

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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    So glad I found this forum. I need some support!!! Here is my story... I'm 25 and got married last year, my husband and I went vegan at the same time around 4 years ago. Before that I was vegetarian (since age 13) but my hubby was omni before going vegan.

    So - I'm pregnant (first time) - so I can't answer the Q of whether a vegan pregnancy is smoother than a non-vegan pregnancy (I hope it is!). I'm about 10 and a half weeks at the moment so nearing the end of my first trimester. I have been pretty ill but it's starting to get better. The worst is that I've gone off most of the food I loved before! Absolutely can't stand the smell or taste of curry etc (I used to live off lentil or chickpea curries, or Thai tofu curries and that kind of thing). Basically most of my protein has gone out the window because none of it really appeals anymore! I'm mainly living off fruit, porridge, cereal bars.....and my vitamins. I'm really hoping things will go back to normal when I hit the 2nd trimester. Oh the other thing is that I was REALLY tired and exhausted, but then I started taking Spatone (natural iron supplement) and it's helped loads with the tiredness.

    I feel a bit disappointed because I was planning such a happy healthy pregnancy but never anticipated all my usual foods making me feel sick!

  15. #15

    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    Quote ness11 View Post
    So glad I found this forum. I need some support!!! Here is my story... I'm 25 and got married last year, my husband and I went vegan at the same time around 4 years ago. Before that I was vegetarian (since age 13) but my hubby was omni before going vegan.

    So - I'm pregnant (first time) - so I can't answer the Q of whether a vegan pregnancy is smoother than a non-vegan pregnancy (I hope it is!). I'm about 10 and a half weeks at the moment so nearing the end of my first trimester. I have been pretty ill but it's starting to get better. The worst is that I've gone off most of the food I loved before! Absolutely can't stand the smell or taste of curry etc (I used to live off lentil or chickpea curries, or Thai tofu curries and that kind of thing). Basically most of my protein has gone out the window because none of it really appeals anymore! I'm mainly living off fruit, porridge, cereal bars.....and my vitamins. I'm really hoping things will go back to normal when I hit the 2nd trimester. Oh the other thing is that I was REALLY tired and exhausted, but then I started taking Spatone (natural iron supplement) and it's helped loads with the tiredness.

    I feel a bit disappointed because I was planning such a happy healthy pregnancy but never anticipated all my usual foods making me feel sick!
    Hey there! Don't be discouraged, as it's still early and you many notice your cravings/aversions will change! The only true aversion I had was to broccoli, which I used to eat every single day. Still, I've gone through phases over the last 37 weeks and sometimes I can eat it, sometimes I can't. I would suggest a couple of things: Take a look at some books about vegetarian pregnancy. I have one called "Your Vegetarian Pregnancy" which is great. It will tell you all about how to ensure you are getting all of your nutritional needs. Another one is called "100 Healthiest Foods to Eat During Pregnancy". It's not vegetarian based but does mention what us vegans can do as alternatives to some of their suggestions.

    Also, start experimenting with new foods! What about beans and rice for protein? Hummus sandwiches? Tempeh? Or lentil salads or soups that don't include curry? In addition to all of these, I drink protein shakes just about every day but this is something I have done for years as my post-workout/breakfast meal. You could always supplement if you need to. Hemp protein is raw and also gives you healthy Omega 3, 6 and 9. Rice and pea protein can also be found and they are usually always vegan.

    I hope you can find some new foods to love Email me if you have any questions,
    Karma

  16. #16
    fortified twinkle's Avatar
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    Hi Ness and welcome I started eating more nuts, especially peanut butter. Went right off baked beans for a while, but can tolerate them now. Have you tried seitan? Quinoa?
    "If you don't have a song to sing you're okay, you know how to get along humming" Waltz (better than fine) - Fiona Apple

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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    Thanks guys for your replies! I will look for those books. Unfortunately I used to eat peanut butter everyday, and now I can't even look at the jar Started managing baked beans again which is a good start. Maybe I should try protein shakes. Can't find quinoa anywhere but I'm on the case (recently moved countries and still figuring out where to shop)

  18. #18
    XxsarahxX's Avatar
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    My first pregnancy was a great pregnancy morning sickness lasted 2 weeks between weeks 12-14 and that was it, charlotte was born a big cubby baby, bigger then nurses originally though because i am tiny. she is now 2 and still healthy and happy.

    I am 14 weeks into my second pregnancy and morning sickness has been a killer! though its slowing down now and my appetite is making a comeback!

    vegemite on toast helps me feel a little less yuck i am guessing its due to the B vitamins
    Vegan blog- http://sarah-moo.blogspot.com
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    Sarah, were you vegan for your first pregnancy too? Maybe you are having a boy this time, since your body is behaving differently from your first. What's your due date? Looks like we'll be pretty close together as I'm 11 weeks!

  20. #20
    XxsarahxX's Avatar
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    i was vegan yes thats what a few people have told me guess we will wait and see! i am due early-mid march. and 11 weeks congratulations
    Vegan blog- http://sarah-moo.blogspot.com
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  21. #21
    Cake Fairy Cherry's Avatar
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    I'm due at the end of March I have been horribly sick for the last 8 weeks and no sign of it ending yet, though my mum (not vegan) was very sick until 16 weeks with all three of her pregnancies, and I am 15 weeks, so there is hope for next week! I can't eat anything meaty (like sausages or tofu), soy yoghurt, baked beans, lentils or garlic. Hot chocolate is also a no-go! I don't think vegetables make me instantly sick, but I really don't fancy them, and I can't drink tea anymore. I am now living off rice, rice cakes, rice krispies, toast, plain pasta, mashed potato, hula hoops (!) and masses of fruit. Odd as before I got pregnant I didn't eat much fruit - just tonnes of veg. It sounds similar to Ness11!

  22. #22
    XxsarahxX's Avatar
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    i cant have tea either! it makes me feel sick and it is my most loved thing to drink in the world i was very sad then after that its now chocolate! gives me a massive belly ache even hot chocolate make me feel yuck its crazy, but i have found i can drink dandelion tea and feel fine and its enjoyable
    hope the sickness passes soon cherry its not fun.
    Vegan blog- http://sarah-moo.blogspot.com
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  23. #23

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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    Just thought I would update as I haven't been back here in a while. I lost the baby at 12 weeks That was a few months ago and currently trying again. Fingers crossed for better luck next time.

  24. #24
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    I am so sorry to hear that, *hugs*.

  25. #25
    Draíochta Blueberries's Avatar
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    Default

    Ness11, I'm sorry to hear about your miscarrage, I'm sure everyone on the forum would join me in offering you our condolances.
    Houmous atá ann!

  26. #26
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    Default Re: How was your vegan pregnancy?

    We could all learn from your strength Ness1.
    May you have peace inside.
    OM Shanti Shanti Santi

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