When Meghan Markle was introduced to us as the newest royal addition, we were showered with every possible detail about her life. That is when I was excited to learn that the very health conscious Miss Markle was vegan… at least during the week and being just a bit lax on the weekend. So when I heard that she was pregnant, I was very curious. What will Meghan eat? It turns out that the “royal doctor” had dissuaded her from maintaining her very healthy eating habits, recommending that she eat meat regularly. Meghan! How can this be? What will you do?
First and for-most, a vegan diet is perfectly safe and healthy before, during and after pregnancy for both mother and baby! Meghan’s body is already accustomed to a primarily vegan diet, so making changes now wouldn’t be optimal anyway.
The main concerns as far as nutrients for pregnancy are folate, calcium and iron, none of which are compromised with veganism. As a matter of fact, casein, a milk protein, prohibits iron absorption, is linked to cancer and osteoporosis. Milk does not do a body good.Iron is easily obtained by leafy green vegetables, lentils and other legumes, quinoa, and butternut squash.
The best source of calcium is not milk! Give leafy greens, nuts, seeds, grains and beans a try instead. The calcium in plant-based sources is easily absorbed by the body, where as dairy requires leaching vitamins and minerals from your body (your bones) to digest, thus the link to osteoporosis.
Sources of folate include citrus fruits, brussels sprouts, broccoli, leafy greens and legumes. As you can see, grains, beans and vegetables are chock full of all of the essential vitamins and minerals that we need. What about protein, you may ask??? Plants contain protein! You can easily get all that you need and more on a plant-based diet. The only supplement recommended is B12, as we wash our vegetables so well now that we are not getting it on our food.
So, In conclusion, I am hoping that Meghan listens to her body first. A doctor’s training in nutrition is extremely limited at best and in my opinion, the “royal doctor’s” input on diet seems, a bit dated…