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Can I switch to a paleo diet while in my 2nd Trimester?

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  • Can I switch to a paleo diet while in my 2nd Trimester?


    I'm paleomommy. I am not a current paleo or primal eater yet. My husband and I enjoy junk food, but we also stay pretty active. I do cardio workouts about 5 times a week, and try to lift weights around 3 times a week. I'm currently 19 weeks pregnant. I just read the book the Paleo Diet and I am totally in! It sounds amazing, I'm tired of being overweight and know its 100% because of my diet. However, I have not been able to find resources about the effects of switching to such a healthy diet while pregnant.

    Most pregnancy healthy eating guidlines I've found suggest good whole grains, and lots of milk for calcium. People, including my baby doctor say that starting such a drastic change at this point in my pregnancy will cause stress on my baby. Or that my body will start detoxing, and cause illness which could be hard on the baby. I just don't understand how eating healthier could cause problems in the long run.

    I'm assuming I will stay about 80/20 keeping some carbs in my diet as well as a little dairy. Doing this for the specific hope that I will not be the cause of my child actuallying being lactose intollerant or having a severe gluten allergy. But if anybody has some solid knowledge about this big of a change during pregnancy please help me out! I want to do this both for myself and for giving my kids the best start to life that I can.

    Thanks a bunch!!

  • #2
    Go for it.

    Eating Primal or Paleo (they're both exceptionally healthful ways of eating, Primal is just a little less strict) will NOT HARM YOUR BABY. It is probably the best gift you could give your child to eat this way yourself while you are pregnant and nursing, and to teach your child to eat according to ancestral evolutionary principles as he/she grows. Grains, especially gluten grains, are bad for you, and that's true whether you're pregnant or not.

    Your health during pregnancy has a HUGE impact on the long-term health of your child. From brain development, to immune system function, to proper growth of the skull bones (which leads to not needing braces and so on later in life, as well as having good vision), EVERYTHING about your child's development will be better served by making this switch as soon as you can.

    If you're worried about calcium, eat some hard aged cheese. No lactose and tons of calcium. But you will get all the minerals you need from a diverse diet of meat, fish, fowl, eggs, veggies, tubers, etc. WAY more nutritionally dense than a CW diet, way better for you and baby.

    EDIT: I forgot, organs! Liver, kidney, etc. are all powerhouses of nutrition.
    Today I will: Eat food, not poison. Plan for success, not settle for failure. Live my real life, not a virtual one. Move and grow, not sit and die.

    My Primal Journal


    • #3
      I think switching to a grain free/ healthy fat way of life would benefit a pregnant woman. I personally would not view the paleo approach as a "diet" while I was pregnant. It is important you keep your calories up at this time. I would suggest just doing away with grains, or at least limit them, increasing healthy fats, increasing vegeatable intake, eat more organs, and be mindful of intaking too much O6. I cannot stress the importance of calories and getting as much nutrients as you can out of what you eat.


      • #4
        I don't see how changing to a healthier diet would be bad. It's pretty much what CW is recommending too, although with a different idea of healthy.
        If you are worried about stressing the baby, just do it slowly. Cut out the true junk and replace it with meat and veggies. Figure out conveniences you rely on often and figure out ways to replace them. You certainly don't want to be figuring out a new way to eat with a newborn stealing your sleep.
        Don't worry about lactose and gluten intolerances. Lactose intolerance is something that usually develops after weaning. Lactase persistence (the continued ability to digest lactose as an adult) is a genetic adaption. Chances are if you and your husband can tolerate dairy, so will the child.
        Gluten related issues are much more varied, but again, are not prevented by exposure.
        You shouldn't see this as a way to lose weight while you are pregnant. You are trying to grow another human being after all. Can't build a house by breaking down the scaffolding


        • #5
          I'm in the third trimester of my second pregnancy. My daughter is 21 months old and primal. I was not primal during my pregnancy with my first. I remember being really run down all the time but my girl is healthy. This time around I'm primal. I started when I was 4 weeks pregnant but didn't know. At 10 weeks I had really bad morning sickness (all day long) and would be lucky to get down a slice of bread. When I started feeling better I went back to primal eating. If drastic changes are bad for the baby, why did my body naturally shift from primal to eating one piece of bread a day and back to primal when feeling better? My body went into vomit overdrive. It's a natural occurance, but if sudden changes stress the baby too much.....what the heck is nature doing making me puke? Also, women diagnosed with gestational diabetes have to make drastic changes as far as Carb intake by a doctor's orders. So a sudden changes is only ok for GD babies?

          Lastly..........the baby experiences stress during birth, and that stress is necessary for starting up their bodies to survive without literally being attached to mom via the umbilical cord.

          It sounds to me like your doctor is blowing smoke. Doctors often seem to use fear to manipulate situations. Stress is a normal and necessary thing within reason. Does your doctor also recommend remaining pregnant forever because the stress of birth is...stressful on the baby? All I know is what I've felt. I have more energy eating primal in my second pregnancy while chasing a 21 month old every day than I had eating CW in my first pregnancy. My weight gain is controlled, unlike the first time, and my baby has had healthy ultrasounds and heartbeat checks. You can't get more drastic than starting primal eating at 4weeks of pregnancy, eating one slice of bread a day from 10 weeks to 21weeks, and back to primal again.

          I hope this was helpful. I'm more of a reader here than a poster.