Chapter 5. Nutrition during pregnancy - Adishhub

Chapter 5. Nutrition during pregnancy

Chapter 5. Nutrition during pregnancy

Being pregnant does not mean that a woman should eat twice as much. It implies that a woman should eat twice as much. The smartest and most informed dietary choice during pregnancy is vegetarianism. The section “Preparing for conception” describes in detail all the benefits of this type of nutrition.

The belief that pregnant women absolutely need to eat meat to maintain hemoglobin levels and normal development of the baby is nothing more than an anachronism, refuted by many intelligent doctors. The lack of protein, vitamin B12 and other substances only due to the absence of meat, fish and eggs in the diet of a pregnant woman is completely a myth. Examples of such problems in non-vegetarian women are observed not less often, but even more often. An organism contaminated with indigestible protein is sick and uncomfortable much more often than an organism accustomed to light, quickly digestible food. There are even cases when vegetarians, planning to conceive, under the rule of prejudice, begin to eat meat. After all, they are assured that they will still have to eat meat during pregnancy. Experience shows that no mother benefits from such a decision, nor a developing kid. Problems with hemoglobin remain the same, and internal organs suffer from a similar severity.

In general, the most common “scarecrow” for pregnant women among modern doctors is anemia – a lack of iron, expressed in a low level of hemoglobin. Nevertheless, doctors should not be allowed to take advantage of our illiteracy. It must be remembered that a decrease in hemoglobin during carrying a child is characteristic of almost all women, regardless of their diet. Iron is extremely poorly absorbed from any foodstuffs. Therefore, the increased consumption of beef liver (where, moreover, all the wastes of the animal raised on hormones and antibiotics are accumulated) has, as statistics show, practically zero result. A decrease in hemoglobin levels in a pregnant woman is normal. This phenomenon is called “physiological anemia”. In this way, the body protects itself from the risk of bleeding. This is nature’s mechanism for maintaining pregnancy. It is extremely illogical and unreasonable to apply the norms of the hemoglobin indicator for a non-pregnant woman to a female body rebuilding into pregnancy. Unfortunately, many gynecologists ignore these obvious differences and, as a result, unreasonably provoke unnecessary anxiety in a woman, which has a much more significant effect on the health of the mother and baby.

The main thing is that the mark does not fall below 90. An alarming situation can be called a situation in which hemoglobin in the blood of a pregnant woman does not drop at all. Then there is some risk of bleeding opening. Our task with a low hemoglobin level is to maintain it so that it does not fall below a certain mark (90). Plant-based products do an excellent job with this.

In addition, even doctors themselves today recommend that women minimize or completely exclude animal protein from the diet in the third trimester of pregnancy. This allows the body to cleanse itself before childbirth, significantly reduces the risk of problems such as premature aging of the placenta, and also prepares the soft tissues of the pelvis for childbirth. The more elastic the ligaments, muscles and tissues of the female body are, the more likely it is that childbirth will be easier, faster and without tears.

I am a doula and accompany women during pregnancy, childbirth and after. I work with midwives and doctors who deliver at home. As practice shows (the joint experience of midwives and doctors taking part in childbirth, observing pregnancy and the postpartum period), vegetarian women, as a rule, have a calmer and softer birth than women who adhere to a different type of diet. The concentration of fear in the refusal of meat food becomes less. Eating meat in the 3rd trimester of pregnancy can negatively affect health and, to some extent, interfere with the preparation of the body for the upcoming birth; protein is more needed in the 1st and 2nd trimesters, but it does not have to be animal protein. The standard nutritional recommendation in the 3rd trimester of our midwives is to consume pumpkin, the maximum reduction in the amount of salt and sugar (sweets) in the diet of the expectant mother, as well as an orientation towards the needs of the body (if a woman feels her body well and knows how to hear needs, not desires). In vegetarians who adhere to this type of diet for 3-4 years before pregnancy, toxicosis may be less pronounced“.
Olga, doula.

Another question that meat-eaters regularly ask vegetarians is about protein and vitamin B12 sources. These substances are found in many foods that are much healthier than animal foods. The human body, having received protein from meat, must spend a lot of energy to break it down and release the necessary amino acids from there. All the rest of the “garbage” has to be processed by the liver, pancreas, intestines, which by nature are not adapted for processing such waste. In conditions of additional stress on the body during pregnancy, with the regular consumption of meat by a woman, all internal organs receive an unjustified load and stress.

From plant products, it is not protein that enters the body, but the necessary amino acids in pure form. Therefore, he does not need to break down animal protein, which is perceived by our body as identical to the protein contained in human meat and, therefore, is not intended for digestion. The body builds amino acids into the necessary chains, without filling up with harmful substances introduced into the organisms of animals. Therefore, of course, there is an alternative that is healthy and beneficial for the body of the mother and baby.

Many women who adhere to vegetarianism report excellent health, extra strength, and ease both before conception and during pregnancy. In addition, vegetarian women in 9 months of pregnancy usually gain only the necessary weight gain (and it is not as big as they say in books), which allows the body to function adequately. And after giving birth, it is quite easy for them to get rid of the gained kilograms and restore elasticity to tissues and skin.

“It seems to me that vegetarianism makes a person more open and sensitive to himself and the world around him. The body is cleansed of layers of unnecessary husk: on the physical plane – antibiotics, hormones, dietary supplements, which are abused by livestock enterprises, on the energy plane – the energy of suffering and dying horror of animals, on the intellectual and spiritual plane – understanding that in order for you to eat someone take away precious life. I felt it especially well during pregnancy, which passed without toxicosis, sudden mood swings, and irresistible gastronomic desires. Everything was smooth and calm. Enjoying my condition, I lived life to the extent that I passed my exam at 30 weeks and became a certified yoga teacher. The purity and freshness of body and soul made it possible to listen and hear your body, to accept the changes taking place in it, in the first months, to feel the sex of the child, to establish breastfeeding, trusting your feelings and not getting lost from the numerous, sometimes annoying, advice from others. It seems that it is thanks to vegetarianism that I feel such a sensitive and deep connection with the child. In turn, the son, who lived his first year as a vegetarian, calmly, openly and joyfully looks at this world. Happy and harmonious pregnancy and motherhood to everyone!»
Natalia Kryazhevskikh, yoga teacher, breastfeeding consultant, sling consultant, Andrey’s mother,

“Pregnancy is a very important part of any woman’s life. The life of a little man will depend on her thoughts and actions. Since the child is inside the woman, he will be as healthy and mentally developed as the mother is healthy. Therefore, it is very important to pay attention to your body. And the body, in turn, is healthy only when it is nourished with healthy food. The topic of nutrition during pregnancy is one of the important components of a healthy pregnancy. Through my experience and the experience of other moms, I have learned that vegetarian and vegan diets are healthy and balanced eating habits, especially during pregnancy. You can study a lot of different literature on this topic. During pregnancy, I did not eat foods such as meat, fish, eggs. I ate very little dairy products, but a lot of fresh vegetables and fruits, leaned on salads and other greens. I also used fresh juices and green cocktails. Sometimes it happened to eat not very healthy food, for example, chocolate or other sweets, but I tried to exclude refined sugar and replace it with honey. Also during pregnancy and lactation, I cleansed the body according to the method of M.V. Ohanyan. I was registered with the LCD and passed standard tests for pregnant women. Everything was normal. The hemoglobin level was slightly lowered, as is often the case in the last stages. I felt great and was actively engaged in yoga right up to the birth. During pregnancy, I did not use any synthetic drugs or vitamins. In general, on vegetarianism, I forgot about the pills. From my own experience, I was convinced that by eating only living foods, you can stay healthy.
Alina Terentyeva, yoga teacher, mother of Svyatoslav.

An important rule of a balanced diet of a pregnant woman to maintain hemoglobin levels is the absence of joint consumption of foods containing iron and protein. These substances compete with each other. It is better to consume iron-containing foods with foods rich in vitamin C, as it promotes better absorption of iron.

It’s up to you to tell your doctor that you are a vegetarian diet. Remember that modern doctors for the most part are a product of the system and work according to specific instructions. Very few of them adequately approach this or that problem of the human body. Nevertheless, every year there are more and more such professionals. Therefore, the news that you are not eating meat will not cause your gynecologist to panic.

The best option here is sanity. First, listen to yourself and your body. If you have been engaged in self-improvement practices before, you will be able to quite subtly feel the processes that are happening to you at the physical level. Secondly, do not get hung up on the opinion of one doctor who assures you that meat is necessary not only for pregnant and lactating women, but also for the developing body of the child. Visit several and print the average opinion. We really hope that you will be lucky to meet a competent specialist who, in order to simplify his work, does not ignore the facts and real experience of many people.

The words of obstetrician-gynecologist Tatyana Malysheva about pregnancy on vegetarianism are interesting: “I have been working with pregnant women for many years and have never seen vegetarians with a deficiency of protein and iron. But I saw much more meat eaters with their deficit. Non-vegetarians have a much more slagged body than those who do not eat meat at all. If the body is very sick, this is the first sign that it is poisoned by toxic substances, and it is necessary to stop eating meat in the first place, since meat is the main supplier of toxins to the body. “

Before pregnancy, I was a vegetarian for almost 4 years. During these 4 years, health has improved significantly. Gone are the annual sore throats, skin problems, digestion and so on. But, to be honest, I thought that it would not work immediately to get pregnant. Since there are many cases of infertility and problems with conception and bearing, and I am already 30 years old. But immediately, without any problems, I became pregnant. I was even shocked, I thought that this does not happen in our time. For 4 years of vegetarianism, I have not taken any tests, so it was exciting to go through them all now during pregnancy. Absolutely all tests were normal, not a single deviation. I did not drink any vitamins or pills. I ate more greens and fruits. There was no toxicosis. In general, the pregnancy went smoothly, and the birth at home was successful. So personally, I see no reason to fear that vegetarianism is dangerous for mom and child, my experience has shown the opposite. Everyone praises my son: a healthy, active and very calm and balanced baby.
I would like to add something about the weight of vegetarian babies. I watched the course of Tatyana Malysheva, a doctor-midwife with a very long experience. She said that children began to be born too large, already overweight, it was difficult to give birth and bear them. The meat is filled with artificial growth hormones that were fed to the animals, and these hormones pass into the body of the mother and child.
Our son weighed 3 kg when he was born. According to Malysheva, this is the gold standard. After giving birth, he perfectly gains weight on breast milk
 . “
Ginta Liede, yoga teacher, mother of Svyatoslav.

Thoughts about vegetarianism originated in me after reading the legendary book by M. V. Ohanyan “Environmental Medicine. The path of the future civilization ”, which I learned about in one of the lectures of E. Androsova. After consulting with my spouse, we decided to first reduce the amount of animal food consumed in half. After a while, only an occasional use of it remained, and by the time of conception I was already a vegetarian. So, my third pregnancy took place under the alarming fears of gynecologists about a possible lack of protein in me and my child. However, after the second trimester, when all the tests were regularly “with a bang”, they were less worried, and my worries subsided. As a result, the child was born with a weight of 3760 g, 56 cm. And this despite the fact that the first children were 2960 g and 3150 g each and 51 cm tall !!! And where did he get the protein? When I grow up, I will definitely ask.
Today my baby is 1 year and 7 months old. So far, we have two breastfeeds left: in the morning and before bed. The child grows well, overtaking his older brother and sister in height at this age, and is very different in mental development. In his incomplete 2 years, he does and understands things that are typical for children over 3 years old
 . “
Yulia Skrynnikova, teacher, mother of Elizabeth, Danila and Svyatoslav.

I myself am a vegetarian, I have not eaten meat since childhood, except for those years when my parents, in ignorance, forced me to eat “meat” by violent methods. In general, I left home to study at the age of 15 (now I’m 39). From this age, I completely stopped eating meat. Now, with the exception of bee products, I can say I am on a vegan diet. I have two children, one is 5 years old, the second is 3.5 years old, both are vegetarians from birth, they never ate meat, although I offered them chicken for a sample, so to speak, to absolve myself of the sin of responsibility to deprive them of something and deprived of the possibility of choice, but this attempt of mine was rejected by the children. In both pregnancies, I was on a vegetarian diet with few exceptions: during my first pregnancy, I sometimes ate fish, as well as dairy products, due to which the child has a wild intolerance to these products, especially fish (when trying to feed him with grandmother’s fish soup, they got an allergic reaction in the form of Quincke’s edema and almost lost the child). With the second child, I acted more prudently and during pregnancy did not eat seafood and animal products, but consumed a large amount of vegetables and fruits, fresh juices, etc. The child was born on time, absolutely healthy, weighing 4 kg. He is now also a vegetarian and does not eat animal products. I especially want to note the moment of the birth itself: having prepared for a complete tin, I gave birth to the first child easily and almost painlessly, and with the second it was even easier, since all these fears were gone. Currently, children grow up strong and healthy, very rarely get colds (as a rule, lasts 2-3 days and is very easily tolerated, without any green snot, coughing and other things). We lead an active lifestyle, we go in for sports according to the season.
In the kindergarten, children naturally do not eat meat, they simply refuse to accept such food, eat something that is unclear, or they may just get hungry for the day (for them it’s easy) and wait for me to come and feed them at home. I agreed with the teachers in groups so that my children would not be forced to eat meat if they did not want to. I was also allowed to bring them fruit, although bringing food to kindergarten is prohibited. I leave the fruit in the cabinet; if for lunch or an afternoon snack they are fed meat, then the teachers give them the fruits they brought, and my children sit separately in a corner and grump their apples and pears. Everyone is happy with this, thank gods. I thought it would be much more difficult. I do not explain to them why I do not eat meat, they just do not ask such questions, it is natural for them to eat fruits and vegetables and drink juices. For them it is a matter of course, like breathing or walking, I think. Now, if they were forced to eat meat, then they would have questions “

Elena Maltseva, lawyer, mother of Radomir and Vladimir.

“ I became a vegetarian about 10 years ago, the main reason is moral considerations. An indirect cause is persistent gastritis and concomitant gastrointestinal diseases. Everything happened by itself, without forcing yourself. I lost a couple of sizes, my stomach began to bother me less. Since I stopped cooking meat food, my husband also gradually switched to plant foods.
Even when I had not yet planned a pregnancy, I knew that my child would be a vegetarian. Now my son is 2 years and 9 months old. He is a vegetarian. He practically does not get sick with viral infections (compared to other children), weighs normally, and develops too. Now our diet is mostly vegetables and fruits
 . “
Varvara Kuznetsova, production and sale of clothes, Dobrynya’s mother.

My experience in terms of vegetarianism during pregnancy is interesting. Because in my first pregnancy, I ate everything and meat too. And by the beginning of the second pregnancy and until now, vegetarianism has finally taken root in our family. Therefore, I can compare “meat-eating and pregnancy” and “vegetarianism and pregnancy”. From the point of view of the physical course of pregnancy, the health of the child, its weight and other things, there was no difference. In terms of plus points to karma, the difference is huge. In both pregnancies, I gained the same weight, there were no serious problems with monitoring the pregnancy. There were more minor troubles in relation to the analysis of meat-eating. With vegetarianism, everything was normal, except for anemia, which haunts me in my usual state. The children were born at normal weight, on time. The second child, as is often the case, was larger than the first (almost 4 kg). Therefore, I am definitely for vegetarianism: everyone is alive and you feel good“.
Ksenia Smorgunova, former chief accountant, mother of Arina and Polina.

And most importantly, when defending your position, remember the main argument in favor of vegetarianism: if we make a choice in favor of life, our children – both present and future – cannot be bad from this!

In the Buddha’s Dharani Sutra about longevity, atonement for wrongdoing and protecting children, Shakyamuni Buddha and the Bodhisattva King of Healing directly speak of the grave harm to a child if his parents consume killer food themselves and encourage others to eat it. It is important that they point to the possibility of atonement for such bad karma through spiritual practice:

“… At this time, the Bodhisattva King of Healing came forward to the Buddha and said:“ World Honored One! I am known as the Great King of Medicine and I am able to cure all diseases. Young children can be infected with nine types of diseases that can lead to their early death.
… The second is that the place where a child is born into this world is stained with blood.
… The fifth is that animals are killed for friends and acquaintances to prepare a holiday on the occasion of the birth of a child.
… The seventh is that when a child is sick, he eats all kinds of meat.
… Buddha addressed the Bodhisattva Manjushri: “… Besides, Manjushri! After I leave, in the evil world of five turbidity, all pregnant women who kill and eat the flesh of living beings or eat eggs to strengthen their bodies, then such women lack kindness and compassion, and they receive the reward of a short life in the present … They will have a difficult birth, and they may die from it. Even if they give birth to a child safely, he will in reality be a debt collector or an enemy who has come to collect debts. He cannot be a good friend, useful to the family. But, if a woman is able to make good vows before rewriting this Sutra, accepts, keeps, reads and recites it, then she will not have a difficult birth. She will safely give birth to a child without any hindrance. Mother and child will be happy.

“ During pregnancy and breastfeeding, I adhered to an exclusively vegetarian diet, since this type has been familiar to me since childhood. When my first pregnancy came, I learned about the wonderful naturopathic physician Marva Ohanyan, her methods of cleansing the body and the ability to switch to another, more conscious, level of nutrition – a raw food diet. It was difficult for me at that time to completely switch to another food system, so I limited myself to a light cleaning according to the Ohanyan method, after which I felt great (it was the 3rd month of pregnancy). Then I introduced fresh juices, more fresh vegetables and fruits into my diet. My health was good, there was no toxicosis.
During pregnancy I did not take any additional vitamins. Observed in a regular antenatal clinic, I passed all the required tests, and they were all good throughout the entire period of bearing the child. With my vegetarian diet, I carried a healthy, large baby
 . “
Anna Solovey, musical director of the kindergarten, mother of Nadezhda.

Fasting and fasting days during pregnancy.

If you practiced fasting before pregnancy, you can continue this practice (no more than once every one to two weeks), since the body is already adapted to it. In no case, during pregnancy, you should not start starving or arrange cleansing of the body according to any system in which your body has not had time to accumulate enough experience. But organizing fasting days from time to time is just useful. Fasting day refers to the use of any one product during the day, which is saturated with the necessary supply of nutrients. A fasting day on apples or oranges, which are acidic, will not have a positive effect and can cause digestive problems.

Drinking fluids. I would also like to give here some recommendations regarding the use of water. Many women are scared by their mothers and most doctors by the problem of swelling during pregnancy.

You should know that with a healthy diet that allows the body to remain clean and perform its functions in the best possible way, as well as sufficient water intake, edema is very rare for women. We are often told (especially in the third trimester of pregnancy) that the legs and arms will swell and swell from drinking plenty of fluids. However, the point here is exactly the opposite – in the insufficient use of water. A wise organism, if it lacks some substances, begins to store them for future use, so that in the future it will not be in a situation of deficiency of the necessary minimum. The same thing happens with water: the less we drink, the more water the body stores in tissues. As a result of this, edema occurs. You really need to drink a lot of water, at least 1.5 liters per day (not counting other liquids). Then a calm and contented body will remove all excess fluid,

If you still have edema with sufficient water intake, most likely the reason is that some of the internal organs cannot cope with the function assigned to it and needs your attention. In this case, you need to consult with a specialist (preferably with several).

If you led a healthy lifestyle and adhered to a vegetarian diet before pregnancy, it is highly likely that your body, cleansed over a long period, will never face such a problem. But even in the opposite situation, it will be much easier for him to solve this problem. We sincerely wish you the opportunity to exercise mindfulness and sanity during a wonderful period of bearing a baby!