Sunday, April 10, 2016
Eats Lately: Pregnancy
Now that I'm 16 weeks into this pregnancy, I feel like I can finally eat and cook again. The first semester, though, was anything but easy. I could barely go into the kitchen, and anything green turned my stomach. It was horrible. There was a week in the beginning where all I wanted to eat were potatoes. I knew it would get better, but it was pretty rough.
In the middle of hating all my favorite foods, I started doing more research on pregnancy nutrition. I talked to my doctor about a vegan diet while pregnant, and he was supportive but recognized that I would understand more about that than he did. As the weeks went on, and I could keep food down, I started tracking my food intake to check for calcium, iron, and protein. That's when I started to get a bit nervous. Obviously, there are ways to get enough things you need on a vegan diet to support a pregnancy. There are a lot of great resources out there that I looked into. A lot of those plans, though, are fairly high in calories in order to get enough. I am starting this pregnancy at a point in my weight where I need to be cognizant of gaining too much. I really struggled with this in the beginning, including having lots of guilt and body hating that I hadn't felt in years, but I'll save that for another post.
So, I started to think that incorporating dairy and eggs back into my diet was the way I wanted to go. Then I fretted about it. Veganism had been my identity for 8 years, and I wasn't even sure I could do it, but I really felt like I needed to. After having our miscarriage, I think I've been so terrified to do something wrong that could influence the health of our baby. I know that ultimately babies are born healthy into much worse circumstances than I could create, but it's still a fear. Anyway, all that is to say that for now, for the pregnancy, I am not eating a strictly vegan diet.
I feel like 80% of my diet is still the way it was, with just a few added things. I won't be switching off Earth Balance or nut milks, because I don't really feel like the alternatives offer me anything better. I mainly started by adding Greek yogurt to my smoothies, since they're full of protein, and I've already talked about not wanting to use protein powder. Eventually, I picked up some eggs at the farmer's market and Josh made me my first egg in almost a decade.
I'm still using plant based meat, because I still don't want to eat meat. I think a vegetarian pregnancy will be fine for me, and I haven't had the urge to go farther. Plus, I still thing vegan and vegetarian diets are better for animals and the planet. Josh made me this breakfast sandwich for dinner awhile back. It was super weird to eat eggs, and I'm still not super into it, but it's something I do occasionally.
Early in the pregnancy, I got super sick off Mexican food, so I didn't eat it for a long time. The only exception were these tasty vegan tacos from Tacos 4 Life. I got a tasty tofu one, which I loved, and another one with mushrooms that I had a hard time with, because I have had a distaste for mushrooms for months now. I think I'm finally getting over it, though.
We went to visit my parents recently, and my mom made me this protein POWERHOUSE. Mama V made black bean burgers, tofu, chickpeas and brussels sprouts, and grilled potatoes. Hello, heaven.
There were several weeks in the beginning where all I wanted was avocado toast, and that has not stopped. It's really the best, right?
A few weeks ago, I got a huge craving for banh mi's, so we had these tofu ones with a zucchini salad. I am having trouble with spicy food, because it just tastes more intense, so this dinner was a bit hot. It was my fault for putting all the jalapenos in it.
You might see a running theme here. I'm inhaling all the tofu and toast I can find, This has been a pretty common meal. So good.
I have some recipe posts coming, and more musings on pregnancy. It's my hope that this post doesn't discourage anything about veganism. It's an incredibly compassionate and delicious way of life. This is just my situation for now, and I hope you will continue to read.