Ella wears the Brea blouse by Yoli & Otis
Ella wears the Ora sweater by Mara Hoffman.
Parenting & Baby
Conscious Pregnancy with Deliciously Ella
We visit Ella Mills, aka Deliciously Ella to discuss all things conscious pregnancy and wellness. After successfully making plant-based diets cool and lifting our commutes with her interesting podcasts, the food writer and wellness sensation is now expecting her first child. As any fellow mother or mother to be will know, pregnancy can put a bit of a spanner in the works when it comes to things like conscious living, plant-based eating, and undoubtedly, your wardrobe! But don’t fret, we have all the advice ahead. From battling cravings to dressing the bump, Ella walks us through how she’s going about things, in the most natural ways possible of course.
We love how you introduce your pregnancy as a topic of conversation in the realm of sustainability. For mothers to be and future mothers to be, how would you suggest combatting the style dilemma that comes along with dynamic body changes?
It’s a hard one and honestly not something people talk about enough I don’t think. Falling pregnant is the most incredible gift, I know how lucky I am, and I feel so incredibly grateful and appreciative of it. That being said it’s not without its challenges – mentally it’s a pretty topsy turvy period of time, as there are just so many changes happening at such a rapid rate. Not only are you preparing for a journey into motherhood, of deep responsibility and a fundamental shift in your life before but you’re also coming to terms with the daily changes in your body. My boobs grew at least three sizes in 16 weeks, I stopped my favourite sweaty yoga classes and literally nothing fits. Whilst I’m in awe of my body and what it’s creating, I do have moments where I look in the mirror and think “oh no what can I wear?” and feel those little insecurities creeping in, which isn’t helped by the nausea and exhaustion that often comes along side it all, especially at the start.
I realised I needed to find a handful of pieces that boosted my confidence and made me feel like a pregnant goddess rather than squeezing into things that used to fit. When I shop I like to buy sustainable brands if I can, but I also look to sustainability in terms of durability and whether I’ll still be wearing the piece in five years. I’m trying not to buy anything that won’t also work when I’ve got baby in tow.
What pieces of clothing are you drawing towards at this stage of pregnancy?
A real mix to be honest, some days looser feels better but other days I really like showing off the bump so something more form hugging makes me feel more confident. Either way it has to be comfy as being pregnant can be a little uncomfortable at times and I don’t want to exacerbate that with what I’m wearing.
How are you navigating veganism when you are eating for two people instead of one? Any suggestions of supplements you have introduced into your diet?
It’s been really easy honestly; I’ve not really changed anything so far other than just being conscious of eating a balanced diet once I’ve come through the intense nausea. I’ve been taking Wild Nutrition pregnancy supplements, which are great, plus B12 and Symprove probiotics.
Will you be raising your child as vegan? Why or why not?
I think so but I know that’ll be controversial for a lot of people and I am wary of that! I’m also conscious of allowing them to explore their own choices as they grow older, I’ll never force anything on them and want to leave their life open to them to explore but I’d like to encourage and support them to learn as much as they can about the importance of a plant-based diet both for our human health and the health of the planet. That being said, I just have a feeling that in five to ten years most of us will be vegan/vegetarian/plant-based/flexitarian and that living in this way will be the norm.
On your podcast you mentioned that when you first became pregnant broccoli made you feel a bit ill and your diet consisted of bland foods the first 12 weeks. What is your advice, thus far, for sustainably-minded and/or plant-based individuals navigating the woes of pregnancy realistically?
It did, honestly the way I normally eat went out the window those first twelve weeks. I hated healthy food and only really wanted oats, muesli, crisps, chips, bread and anything tangy like lemon and artichokes. Honestly my biggest piece of advice at this point is just to go with it, there’s no such thing as perfect in life and you’ve just got to listen to your body and what it needs.
Any tips you have heard on how best to raise a child consciously?
I’m just really hoping that I can be led by them, encourage them in what they want to explore and create health boundaries for them to explore that from. I’ve been recommended a few books on the subject but haven’t got that far down my reading list yet, still on the birthing books. If anyone is interested in those and trying to have a really positive birth and remove any existing fears on the subject then I couldn’t recommend Ina May’s books more – they’re been life changing for me.
Do you feel positive about our ability to make positive change for future generations?
I really do, I see that change every day through our community. When we started it was so niche and it no longer is, granted it’s not reaching everyone but each day I feel we’re talking to more and more people and most importantly I feel there’s a shift to an open mindedness and interest in this space, which wasn’t there before.
Finally, what does sustainability mean to you?
Doing your best when you can, it’s not about setting yourself impossible, unrealistic targets but about being mindful in the way you’re living and accessing the impact you’re having as a result. Equally it’s about educating and learning as much as we can about sustainability and the realities around it, sweeping statements and blanket approaches aren’t the way forward, we need to be informed on a deep level about the realities of what’s happening.
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