3

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Getting back on Paleo wagon in 2nd trimester of pregnancy

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created September 29, 2012 at 12:48 PM

I fell off paleo in a big way at 7wks pregnant when cooking/ cooked food/ meat/ smells/ anything fatty (e.g. oily fish) made me want to barf in a big way. The only thing I could eat for a while was crackers and toast, and basically refined carbs and grains came back into my diet.

So, I'm now 14 weeks and beginning to feel more myself and can just about stomach cooking and cooking smells again (I tested by cooking bacon last night, which was the absolute worst thing during 1st tri, and I managed not to barf, although it did make me feel a bit pukey).

My question is, shall I try to get myself back on the Paleo wagon and eliminate bread, pasta, grains and all those other things that have sneaked into my diet the last 7 weeks? I've been finding I have to eat every three or so hours, otherwise I get hungry and nauseous. In the past week or so in particular I've had a ravenous, insatiable hunger most of the time. But prior to pregnancy while eating paleo I could go for 5 or 6 hours between meals and didn't really get hungry or have much of an appetite. Is it worth the three or four days of quick-carb/ sugar withdrawal on pregnancy to get back on paleo? Or should I just give in to the lure of the doughnut (and pizza, and burritos, and CAKE) as my friends tell me?

Edit: I realised it might help if I posted what I've been eating. So, over the past month or so, a 'good' and 'bad' day (in paleo terms) look like below, although in reality most days are somewhere between the two. I've also been supplementing with Vit D, a pregnancy probiotic and folic acid:

'GOOD'
Breakfast: 2 scrambled eggs on a slice of wholegrain toast. Another slice w/ marmite and almond butter
OR 'porridge' made w/ quinoa and almond milk w/ seeds + blueberries and banana
Lunch: Homemade soup (parsnip and pea, or rice-based) + tuna or chicken salad
Aternoon snack: Apple, pear, some almond or cashew butter
Snack while making dinner: carrots and humus
Supper: Roast chicken w/ broccoli, carrot and parsnip mash
Dried figs and perhaps a bit of chocolate after

'BAD'
Breakfast: Granola w/ almond milk, blueberries and banana
Mid-morning snack: Couple of slices of toast w/ jam and/or marmite and almond butter
Lunch: Burrito
Afternoon snack: Some sort of cake
Evening meal: Pizza/ pasta

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on September 30, 2012
at 04:55 PM

I think burritos might be made for baby growing, I had 3-4 per week with the first pregnancy, maybe 1-2 per week now.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on September 29, 2012
at 06:31 PM

Yesterday I was absolutely craving potatoes. (T2 diabetic, so I typically avoid tubers period.) I haven't craved much during this pregnancy, but I laughed when I read your suggestion to eat potatoes! I ate the fries that came with my bunless burger (usually I go for cottage cheese instead), then ordered another side. Thank goodness I don't have any potatoes in the house or my glucose levels would probably be through the roof!

E1e798ccd4eed67665652941b9ef7796

(483)

on September 29, 2012
at 04:43 PM

Yes, I just dug out a recipe for 'paleo' banana muffins from Health-bent.com. I figured that satisfying my sweet tooth with healthier options will help me transition back to paleo proper.

E1e798ccd4eed67665652941b9ef7796

(483)

on September 29, 2012
at 04:37 PM

This is a great step-by-step. Getting rid of gluten grains shouldn't be too hard. Although I have been enjoying toast's re-introduction to my life, the rest of it I can leave pretty easily. Cooking meat in broth is a great idea, I frequently do this for chicken anyway, but have never thought of it for other meats. Alas, I've never seen taro or yucca here in the UK, and I massively went off sweet potatoes in first tri, but I'm weaning myself back on them and have been eating carrots and beets too.

79271221136de61aa7b16d2f61fd3f2d

(10)

on September 29, 2012
at 04:37 PM

Oh, and I'll also mention that I started feeling better when I got consistant taking my supplements. I take a good pre-natal, cod liver oil, a probiotic, vitamin d and magnesium. Hope that helps!

E1e798ccd4eed67665652941b9ef7796

(483)

on September 29, 2012
at 04:34 PM

Hah! I thought of it as 'beige' eating too! Crackers, toast, oatmeal, baked potatoes. Even cheddar before I realised getting pregnant had made me lactose intolerant - grrr. And I too have developed a serious taste for burritos from our local street market. In fact, a burrito with carnitas was the first meat I ate after I fell off Paleo at 7 wks.

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6 Answers

4
Ca1150430b1904659742ce2cad621c7d

(12540)

on September 29, 2012
at 01:31 PM

I know it sounds counterintuitive, but all those carbs can actually aggravate and extend morning sickness. At the same time, a super-high fat diet can be tough while the hormones are worked up.

  • I would gradually work your way into a paleo diet. Start by getting gluten-based grains out of there -- if you HAVE to have grains, stick to white rice (rice crackers, etc.).
  • Next, I would trim down your fructose-bearing foods (fruits, juices, etc.)
  • Add broth, even if it's not bone broth right up. Homemade chicken broth is a good choice
  • Cook your meats in broth, instead of frying, broiling, grilling, etc. It reduces the gag-worthiness until your body gets past it's hormone issues.
  • Start increasing your protein, using lean protein sources at first, and gradually increasing the fat to include more fatty meats
  • Supplement with wild salmon oil or krill oil. It is vital to your baby's neurological development, and the nervous system is growing REALLY quickly now.
  • For carbohydrates, eat sweet potatoes, taro root, yucca root, yam, and some beets and carrots.
  • Eat some leafy greens like spinach, cauliflower, broccoli, etc., every day if you can.
  • Gradually add fats back into your diet, so that you're eating at least 40-50% of your daily calories from good fats by the 16th week... Start with avocado, grass-fed butter or ghee, coconut oil, and then gradually add meat fats back in as your body gets more hungry as the pregnancy progresses.

The best macronutrient ratios for fetal development seem to be 30% protein, 40-50% fat, and ~20% carbohydrate (mostly from glucose sources of carbohydrates like sweet potatoes, taro, and rice)

E1e798ccd4eed67665652941b9ef7796

(483)

on September 29, 2012
at 04:37 PM

This is a great step-by-step. Getting rid of gluten grains shouldn't be too hard. Although I have been enjoying toast's re-introduction to my life, the rest of it I can leave pretty easily. Cooking meat in broth is a great idea, I frequently do this for chicken anyway, but have never thought of it for other meats. Alas, I've never seen taro or yucca here in the UK, and I massively went off sweet potatoes in first tri, but I'm weaning myself back on them and have been eating carrots and beets too.

1
79271221136de61aa7b16d2f61fd3f2d

(10)

on September 29, 2012
at 04:27 PM

Congrats on your pregnancy! I am 13 weeks along myself. :) I also struggled with some morning sickness early on and jumped back into some grains (tried to stay gluten-free) to make myself "feel better". I found, though, that those grain/sugar treats only help me in the short term. Long term they made me feel worse. I went back to Paleo after a few weeks and started feeling a lot better over all. I tried to focus on soups made with bone broth (great for gut health). I also tried several recipes for paleo "treats"... coconut flour or almond flour muffins, breads, etc. It was nice to have something like that for the times when I couldn't even think about a piece of protein or bowl of soup. Also, I find I feel better when I'm not too low carb. So I have bananas and other fruit and winter squash, etc.

Hope you start to feel better! With my second trimester right around the corner I can already feel my appetite getting back to normal. Hopefully it'll be the same for you!

E1e798ccd4eed67665652941b9ef7796

(483)

on September 29, 2012
at 04:43 PM

Yes, I just dug out a recipe for 'paleo' banana muffins from Health-bent.com. I figured that satisfying my sweet tooth with healthier options will help me transition back to paleo proper.

79271221136de61aa7b16d2f61fd3f2d

(10)

on September 29, 2012
at 04:37 PM

Oh, and I'll also mention that I started feeling better when I got consistant taking my supplements. I take a good pre-natal, cod liver oil, a probiotic, vitamin d and magnesium. Hope that helps!

1
6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on September 29, 2012
at 02:57 PM

I didn't make the jump back overnight, I'm still making it, and am not nearly as strict as I was before. Mexican food, Indian food, Ethiopian food, Thai food, dairy, canned fish, sushi, and homemade fries were my "way back in" to real food after the "beige diet" though.

If bland is working for you still, but you want to get away from wheat, the fries are super easy, just slice a potato (or sweet potato) up into wedges, toss in olive or melted coconut oil, sprinkle with sea salt. Throw in a 425 F oven until the edges brown (usually about 20 min.). Dip in gravy, mayo, sour cream, whatever floats your boat.

The fries are also good in this dip: 1 can of salmon or tuna, 1 stick of butter, juice of 1 lemon, salt, pepper, and dill to taste put in a food processor until smooth and shiny.

Making a big batch of potato salad here and there has helped too, because I only have to open the fridge the and dig in if I get crazy hungry all of the sudden, and is a good way to get eggs and lacto-fermented pickles into the mix. Plus, boiling eggs and boiling potatoes is a relatively ick free cooking experience.

Giving myself permission to eat out when I realize I've been snacking too much, and cooking too little has helped too, even though I am less grossed out by cooking smells, at 27 weeks there is still some revulsion, and as far as I'm concerned, it is more important to get enough nourishment, rather than perfect nourishment when pregnant (one of the perks of being an omnivore).

I live in a neighborhood with some amazing Mexican food, and big ass baja burrito or carnitas platter, though not paleo by any stretch of the imagination gets me enough calories to function well if I can't bring myself to cook. The veggie platter plus chicken tibs from my favorite Ethiopian place was sooo good as one of the first real meals when my morning sickness was starting to wane, and the gluten-free chewy tart goodness of the injera bread hit the spot perfectly. Thai Massaman Curry, with beef and potatoes, and a side of sticky rice was good too. I figure if nothing else, if I eat my way around the globe, the baby will get a variety of nutrients, and hopefully have an adventurous palate.

I've also realized that my cravings seem to align pretty well with the WIC guidelines (perhaps one of the only well thought out government led nutrition programs). Give me a can of tuna over a bed of rice, and melt cheese over the whole thing, washed down with a big glass of milk, and I'm in heaven right now.

Good luck, and welcome to the other side of the worst of the nausea, it gets better from here on out. Heck, I even bought a container of chicken hearts last night that I can't wait to cook today with some kale.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on September 29, 2012
at 06:31 PM

Yesterday I was absolutely craving potatoes. (T2 diabetic, so I typically avoid tubers period.) I haven't craved much during this pregnancy, but I laughed when I read your suggestion to eat potatoes! I ate the fries that came with my bunless burger (usually I go for cottage cheese instead), then ordered another side. Thank goodness I don't have any potatoes in the house or my glucose levels would probably be through the roof!

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on September 30, 2012
at 04:55 PM

I think burritos might be made for baby growing, I had 3-4 per week with the first pregnancy, maybe 1-2 per week now.

E1e798ccd4eed67665652941b9ef7796

(483)

on September 29, 2012
at 04:34 PM

Hah! I thought of it as 'beige' eating too! Crackers, toast, oatmeal, baked potatoes. Even cheddar before I realised getting pregnant had made me lactose intolerant - grrr. And I too have developed a serious taste for burritos from our local street market. In fact, a burrito with carnitas was the first meat I ate after I fell off Paleo at 7 wks.

1
Ef7214374ddcf81d9ef03c8863bbd7c2

on September 29, 2012
at 01:51 PM

I would suggest getting back on the Paleo diet. I got on the Paleo diet (as a newbie) in my third trimester and felt wonderful. I wish I had been Paleo before my pregnancy and / or had eliminated grains sooner. Not only is the baby healthier on Paleo, your own body will thank you for it. I lost all the carb weight I had gained during my first and second trimesters and my mood swings were gone! I lost ten pounds without trying and while eating well (baby was thriving as well) and had ZERO swelling. It wasn't until the very end that I got cranky again, but then it was only about a week and the baby was born healthy as can be! I have stuck to the Paleo diet (in spite of the hospital wanting to feed me grains, grains, grains) after the pregnancy as well and am already at the weight I was before I got pregnant at 8 days post partum. As soon as you can eat Paleo, you should try to get back on the wagon. That's my two cents anyway.

0
6498694060d879a7960b35913539b75f

(1307)

on September 29, 2012
at 05:31 PM

Firestorm gave you some great info. I just want to emphasize how very important it is to get some fish oil in daily. I took fermented clo, fish oil and ate some roe whenever I could. What helped me was a morning smoothie almost every day made with coconut milk, vanilla protein powder, two egg yolks, some grass fed butter and liquid fish oil (mine is orange flavored). Add a little cinnamon and ice, and this was something I could drink every day and fit a lot of nutrients in. For some reason, I had trouble with cooked eggs, so the smoothie solved a lot of problems.

0
93626332091a0b580127829c6ffe65e4

on September 29, 2012
at 12:54 PM

Oh, I want to give you my opinion! Baby crying, need to make breakfast, then get to the gym before my class starts. Will come back to you!!!!

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