Do you need to eat meat for your baby to be healthy?

October 20, 2011 12:00 AM by

When you're expecting, finding foods that don't turn your stomach can be a challenge even for the most open-minded eater – and if you're a vegan, that task is likely to be even more complicated!

Of course, many high-profile moms – like Emily Deschanel, a famous vegan who welcomed a son in September with her husband David Hornsby – have made an unconventional diet work throughout a pregnancy. But maintaining a special diet when you're expecting requires a lot of vigilance.

One thing you'll need to pay attention to is your protein intake. Luckily, there are plenty of vegetable-based foods that will allow you to enjoy as much as you need, like beans, soy products and grains.

Iron and calcium are other nutrients of high importance to pregnant women. You can get extra iron by eating dark leafy greens like kale and spinach, prunes, beans, artichokes and lentils. As for calcium, you can find it in many supplements – as well as calcium-enriched soy milk.

Keeping both yourself and your baby healthy during pregnancy is essential, but you don't have to abandon your vegan diet to do it. Speak to a doctor about your nutritional restrictions and plan out a special regimen that will ensure you get all the vitamins, minerals and proteins you require for a healthy, happy pregnancy.

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