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Nutrients. 2019 Mar 6;11(3). pii: E557. doi: 10.3390/nu11030557.

The Effects of Vegetarian and Vegan Diet during Pregnancy on the Health of Mothers and Offspring.

Author information

1
Neonatology Unit, Hospital Clinic-Maternitat, ICGON, BCNatal, 08028 Barcelona, Spain. GSEBASTI@clinic.cat.
2
Neonatology Unit, Hospital Clinic-Maternitat, ICGON, BCNatal, 08028 Barcelona, Spain. HERRANZ@clinic.cat.
3
Neonatology Unit, Hospital Clinic-Maternitat, ICGON, BCNatal, 08028 Barcelona, Spain. CBORRASN@clinic.cat.
4
Neonatology Unit, Hospital Clinic-Maternitat, ICGON, BCNatal, 08028 Barcelona, Spain. MMALSINA@clinic.cat.
5
Neonatology Unit, Hospital Clinic-Maternitat, ICGON, BCNatal, 08028 Barcelona, Spain. VALDECOA@clinic.cat.
6
Grup de Recerca Infancia i Entorn (GRIE), Institut d'investigacions Biomèdiques August Pi i Sunyer (IDIBAPS), 08028 Barcelona, Spain. VIANDREU@clinic.cat.
7
Neonatology Unit, Hospital Clinic-Maternitat, ICGON, BCNatal, 08028 Barcelona, Spain. mireiapascualt@gmail.com.
8
BCNatal | Barcelona Center for Maternal Fetal and Neonatal Medicine Hospital Sant Joan de Déu, 08028 Barcelona, Spain. sferrero@sjdhospitalbarcelona.org.
9
BCNatal | Barcelona Center for Maternal Fetal and Neonatal Medicine Hospital Sant Joan de Déu, 08028 Barcelona, Spain. lgomezroig@sjdhospitalbarcelona.org.
10
Neonatology Unit, Hospital Clinic-Maternitat, ICGON, BCNatal, 08028 Barcelona, Spain. OGARCIAA@clinic.cat.

Abstract

Vegetarian and vegan diets have increased worldwide in the last decades, according to the knowledge that they might prevent coronary heart disease, cancer, and type 2 diabetes. Althought plant-based diets are at risk of nutritional deficiencies such as proteins, iron, vitamin D, calcium, iodine, omega-3, and vitamin B12, the available evidence shows that well planned vegetarian and vegan diets may be considered safe during pregnancy and lactation, but they require a strong awareness for a balanced intake of key nutrients. A review of the scientific literature in this field was performed, focusing specifically on observational studies in humans, in order to investigate protective effects elicited by maternal diets enriched in plant-derived foods and possible unfavorable outcomes related to micronutrients deficiencies and their impact on fetal development. A design of pregestational nutrition intervention is required in order to avoid maternal undernutrition and consequent impaired fetal growth.

KEYWORDS:

breastfeeding; fetal development; human milk; micronutrients; nutrition; plant-based diets; pregnancy; vegan diets; vegetarian diets

PMID:
30845641
DOI:
10.3390/nu11030557
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