When pregnant, one of the most important things they learn is what they cannot eat. If you are a big fan of rare steaks, sushi, coffee or coffee, this can be very frustrating.
There’s more to eat than you might think. It is important to know how to navigate the waters (low mercury waters). To stay healthy, you will need to be careful about what you eat.
Some foods should be consumed only occasionally, others should be avoided entirely. These are 11 foods and drinks you should avoid while pregnant.
10 Foods & Beverages You Should Avoid during Pregnancy: What to Avoid
Avoid foods and drinks that could put your baby and you at risk for harmful bacteria.
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Mercury fishMercury, which is high in mercury, can be highly toxic. It is not known to have a safe level of exposureTrusted Source. Most commonly, it is found in polluted waters.
It can cause damage to your nervous system and immune system. Even in low amounts, it can cause severe developmental problems in children.
Large marine fish can accumulate large amounts of mercury because it is found in polluted waters. It is best to avoid mercury-rich fish during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Avoid high-mercury fish such as
- king mackerel
- tuna (especially bigeye tuna)
- Tilefish from the Gulf of Mexico
- orange roughy
It’s important to remember that not all fish are high-in mercury.
Low-mercury fish is extremely healthy during pregnancy. Three times per week. Source According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA),
Low-mercury fish are abundant and include:
- trout (freshwater)
Fatty fish such as salmon and anchovies can be a good choice, since they are rich in essential fatty acids for your baby.
- Uncooked or raw fish
This one is not easy for sushi lovers, but it is important. Many infections can be caused by raw fish, particularly shellfish. These infections can be viral, bacteria, or parasitic.
These infections can only affect you and cause weakness and dehydration. You may pass on other infections to your baby, which can have serious or fatal consequences.
Listeria infections are more common in pregnant women. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, pregnant women are 10 times more likelyTrusted source to contract Listeria infections than the general population. Hispanic pregnant women are 24 times more likely to be infected.
This bacteria can also be found in soil, contaminated water, and plants. Raw fish can be infected by bacteria from processing such as smoking and drying.
Even if you don’t have any symptoms, Listeria bacteria can pass to your baby via the placenta. According to the CDCTrusted source, this can cause premature birth, miscarriage or stillbirth and other serious health issues.
Avoid raw fish and shellfish. This includes sushi. You’ll still enjoy it after your baby’s birth and it’s safer to have it again.
- Uncooked, raw and processed meat
Raw fish can also cause problems in undercooked meat. Consuming raw or undercooked meat can increase your risk of contracting several parasites or bacteria, such as Toxoplasma and E. Salmonella, Listeria and E.coli.
Bacteria can cause serious neurological problems in your baby, such as intellectual disability and blindness.
Most bacteria can be found on the surface and in whole meats, but other bacteria could lurk within the muscle fibers.
Whole cuts of meat, such as sirloins, tenderloins or ribeye, may be safe to eat if they are not fully cooked. This applies only if the meat piece is uncut and fully cooked outside.
You should never eat raw or undercooked cut meats such as burgers, meat patties and minced meats, poultry, pork and other meats. Keep those burgers hot on the grill for now.
Hot dogs, lunch meats, and deli meats are all of concern. This is often surprising for pregnant women. These meats could be infected by bacteria after processing or storage.
Pregnant mothers should avoid meat products that have not been reheated to steaming hot.
- Raw eggs
Salmonella bacteria can be found in raw eggs.
Salmonella infections can cause fever, nausea, vomiting and stomach cramps.
In rare cases, cramps may occur in the uterus that can lead to stillbirth or premature birth.
These Foods often contain raw eggs
- Lightly scrambled eggs
- poached eggs
- hollandaise sauce
- homemade mayonnaise
- some homemade salad dressings
- homemade ice cream
- homemade cake icings
Most products that include raw eggs in commercial products are made from pasteurized eggs. They are safe to eat. To be sure, always check the label.
For your safety, always cook eggs well or use pasteurized eggs. Keep those egg yolks that are too runny and homemade mayonnaise for when baby is born.
- Organ meat
Organ meat can be a great source of many nutrients
Vitamin A, vitamin B12 and vitamin A are all good for your baby. Pregnancy is not a good time to eat too much animal-based vitamin B12 (preformed vitaminA).
Too much preformed vitaminA, particularly in the first trimester, can cause congenital malformations or miscarriage.
This is mainly that has been associatedTrusted Source vitamin A supplements. However, it’s best not to eat organ meats such as liver more than once a week.
Perhaps you are one of millions who enjoy their morning cup of coffee, tea or cocoa. When it comes to caffeine, you’re not the only one.
It is generally recommended that pregnant women limit their caffeine intake to 200 mg per daily, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.
Caffeine is quickly absorbed and easily passes into the placenta. High levels of caffeine can be caused by the fact that babies and their placentas lack the main enzyme required to metabolize it.
Studies have shown that high caffeine intake during pregnancy can reduce fetal growth and increase the chance of low birth weight.
Low birth weight is defined as less that 5 lbs., 8oz. Low birth weight (or 2.5kg) is associated with increased riskTrusted Source infant death and higher risk for chronic diseases in adulthood.
Baby shouldn’t be exposed to caffeine.
- Raw sprouts
Rogue ingredients may also be present in healthy salads. Salmonella can be found in raw sprouts such as clover, radish and alfalfa.
These bacteria thrive in the humid environment that seeds require to sprout. It’s almost impossible to get them off.
You should avoid sprouts that are raw. According to FDATrusted Source, sprouts can be consumed once they’ve been cooked.
- Unwashed produce
Unwashed or unpeeled fruit and vegetable surfaces may be infected with several bacteria and parasites.
Toxoplasma and E. These include E.coli, Salmonella and Listeria. They can be obtained from the soil or by handling.
Any time there is a possibility of contamination, it can happen during harvest, processing, storage or transportation. Toxoplasma is a dangerous parasite that can remain on fruits and vegetables.
Most people who contract toxoplasmosis do not experience any symptoms. However, some may feel like they’ve had the flu for several months.
Most infants infected by Toxoplasma bacteria in their wombs at birth do not experience any symptoms. However, later in life, you may experience symptoms like blindness or intellectual disabilityTrusted Source.
A small number of infected babies also have brain or eye damage.
It is important to avoid infection while pregnant by washing your hands thoroughly and peeling or cooking vegetables. It’s a good habit to continue this practice after your baby arrives.
- Unpasteurized milk and cheese
Unpasteurized and raw milk as well as soft-ripened cheeses fromTrusted Source may contain harmful bacteria such as Listeria, Salmonella, E. E. coli and Campylobacter. These are likely to sound familiar. )
Unpasteurized juice is also susceptible to bacterial contamination. All of these infections can have serious consequences for a baby who is stillborn.
It can either be naturally occurring, or it can be caused by contamination during storage or collection. Pasteurization is the best way to eliminate harmful bacteria without affecting the nutritional value of the product.
Avoiding pasteurized milk, cheese and fruit juice will reduce the chance of getting sick.
Avoid alcohol while pregnant. It can increase the chance of stillbirth and miscarriageTrusted Source. Even a small amount of alcohol can have a negative impact on your baby’s brain developmentTrusted source
Fetal alcohol syndrome can also be caused by drinking alcohol during pregnancy. This includes facial deformities and intellectual disabilities.
No level of alcoholTrustedSource has been shown to be safe for pregnant women, so it is recommended to avoid it.
- Processed junk foods
You and your baby are at the best time to eat nutrient-dense foods. Increased intakes of essential nutrients such as iron, folate, choline and protein will be necessary.
There is no such thing as “eating for two”.
A healthy pregnancy diet should include whole foods with lots of nutrients. Junk food, which is often processed, lacks nutrients and is high in calories, sugar and other added fats.
Although some weight gain during pregnancy is normal, excessive weight gain has been linked with many complications and diseases. These include an increased chance of gestational diabetesTrustedSource, and pregnancy-related complications.
Make sure you eat meals and snacks that are high in protein, vegetables, fruits, healthy fats, fiber-rich carbs like beans, whole grains, and starchy veggies. There are many ways to sneak vegetables into your meals, without losing taste.