Research has shown that culture and religion play a significant role in determining dietary and nutritional needs of woman in different demographic locations (NICE, 2013). Thus, the Sikhs, Hindus and Bhuddist have been reported to refrain from eating certain animal products resulting in potential deficiencies in certain mineral elements like vitamin B12 and animal protein that is obtained from animal food sources. In light of this, National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) (2013) recommends that to avoid conflicting cultural perspectives; health visitors and midwives should offer alternative food sources mineral sources that. Thus, while Vitamin B12 from animal food can be substituted by provision of foods such as fortified cereals and yeast extracts; animal protein can be obtained from wholemeal bread, potatoes, baked beans, nuts and lentils (The Vegan Society, 2015). Provision of Vitamin B12 alternatives is particularly essential to the religious ethnic minority residing in countries like UK where there is insufficient sunshine from which vitamin B12 can be obtained from especially in view of the fact that deficiencies in Vitamin B12 can lead to neonatal deficiencies and low levels of Vitamin B12 in breast milk.


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