I’m so excited to share What I Eat During My Vegan Pregnancy!
I’m currently 25 weeks, almost out of the second trimester! I’ll be sharing foods for both the first and second trimester. My appetite has gone down quite a bit since the 20-week mark. In the first trimester I felt ravenous, but could only stomach avocado toast, crackers, pasta and some smoothies. I feel like you have to do whatever you can just to get by during those queasy weeks. So eat what is tolerable and don’t feel bad about it! You can make up for it in the second trimester. You gotta do what you gotta do to get through! Don’t feel guilty if all you can stomach is bread and crackers, it will pass and you will want vegetables again, promise. Be kind to yourself!
Can we talk about something though?! Pregnancy is uncomfortable and really difficult at times. It’s not all bliss and cute baby bump photos. Or maybe it is for the rare unicorn ladies but most people will have some hardships. I think there’s a stigma about how uncomfortable pregnancy really is because we are trained not to complain, out of fear of hurting someone’s feelings who may be experiencing infertility. And I get that because I would never want someone to think I’m not sensitive to them, or that I’m not grateful, because I am! More than anything! I can be grateful and also uncomfortable. I can have feelings and not be “complaining”. Sometimes sharing and talking about it is all we need to feel better because other women can relate and share their experiences, and we bond in that way. We feel LESS ALONE. Not everything is so black and white! Our society drives me crazy with this. We CAN be both. And we should be allowed to talk about whatever we want because if we don’t, we feel isolated. It’s crazy that when I’m about to share something I have to include “yes I’m grateful but”.
Okay, thanks for coming to my pregnancy ted talk.
How have you maintained being plant-based?
Let’s get on with pregnancy foods! So yes I’ve been able to maintain my plant-based diet and feel great! The food part has been fairly easy for me! I’m not someone who would just start eating meat and dairy because I’m pregnant, that doesn’t align with my core values. I will always figure out a way. I do have to pay more attention to my protein intake (it’s recommended that pregnant women get in 70 grams of protein per day). To accomplish this I usually have some sort of protein smoothie for breakfast with the VivoLife Perform protein powder, or at least some fruit and then chia pudding made with the protein powder. Something to get protein in first thing as it helps to keep me satiated and full.
Then I’ll usually have tempeh or beans at lunch to achieve adequate protein intake, and then lentils, edamame or beans at dinner. I like to have variation in the types of protein throughout the day! This ensures you’re getting in variety of nutrients! And then protein-rich snacks throughout the day like hummus with veggies or apple with almond butter. It’s definitely doable, but you have to be mindful of your intake! I’ve been eating this way for 7 years now though, so it’s second nature for me.
Of course I want vegan cookies and brownies and chocolate and pizza and salt & vinegar chips from time to time, ha. I’m human! I’m growing a human! And I have those things on occasion. I definitely do not deprive myself because that makes it so much worse and I want to fully enjoy my pregnancy experience. I’ve especially loved my “Healthy” Snickers Bites (basically no self-control with these ha) and my Vegan and Gluten Free Banana Choclate Muffins. When I make my own homemade treats and can control the ingredients, I feel so much better! And less swollen, ya feel? But I really try to get in as many nourishing whole foods and greens as much as I can because that’s when I feel best! I’ve gained quite a bit of weight so far even though I exercise and eat mostly clean. Weight gain is really hard to talk about… but I feel like it’s all in my big belly and boobs. Pregnancy weight is a whole other topic that I plan to talk more about in my 2nd trimester update (coming soon!).
>>>>> Be sure to check out my Vegan Pregnancy Supplement Protocol too!!!
1st Trimester Foods:
I went through my archive of instagram stories to see what I ate back in the first trimester, especially during the height of nausea! Just want to be as real as possible. Remember, you gotta do what you gotta do. And just eat what you can stomach! Eat more frequently, eat carbs, drink water and rest. I had lots of veggie sandwiches, cucumber salad, my vegan mac and cheese recipe, vegan quesadillas, and Daily Harvest ice cream. I made these little cracker sandwiches that you’ll see below with oat crispbread, baked tofu (store-bought) and cucumber. SO yum and hit the spot perfectly when you’re queasy, while also getting in some protein. I think I lived on cucumbers, homemade french fries and spindrift.
I also made icy sticky water from my first book, The Happy Hormone Guide! There was something so refreshing about it, and it really seemed to settle my stomach! It’s just ice filtered water, the juice of 1 lime (or lemon) and 1/2 teaspoon sea salt. YUMMM.
2nd Trimester Foods:
I’ve definitely been able to stomach basically everything in this trimester! You can make up for lost time and get in lots of veggies and greens. This is when I got back on my protein smoothie kick, and back to eating yogurt bowls. If I ate a yogurt bowl, I would have a protein drink with it (just a mix of water and plant protein powder). Lunch is usually leftovers or a big veggie salad. Dinner is usually something from my blog or cookbook! I try and keep my meals super balanced with protein, fat and fiber/carb. If I eat too big of a portion (which I do more often than not on accident), I get awful cramping because my stomach has no room to expand. So I have to be mindful of my portions but I’m not measuring or counting anything, just trying not to go overboard. Eating intuitively works best for me!
I hope you found this helpful and I hope it gives you some recipe inspo! As always, I share most of what I’m eating over on instagram, so be sure to follow along there 🙂 Pregnancy is a wild ride, just do your best 🙂