You know that extra caution with physical activity is required when you’re pregnant, but there are some foods to avoid during pregnancy too. Because your immune system and body is busy making a baby, you’re often more susceptible to conditions that you aren’t under other circumstances. That’s why it’s important to pay close attention to your diet during pregnancy, so your baby grows healthy and safe. Check out these foods to avoid during pregnancy and you’ll be set the whole time you’re eating for two.
1. Undercooked Meat
I’m with you – I like my steak pink, but that’s not a safe option if you’re pregnant. Undercooked meats could be contaminated with salmonella or toxoplasmosis, both of which are dangerous to a growing fetus and getting sick from these could compromise your pregnancy. The same goes for chicken, smoked fish, sushi and pork too, so put this on your list of foods to avoid during pregnancy.
2. Some Kinds of Fish
Yes, it’s technically a meat and you should never eat it raw while you’re pregnant, but some kinds of fish are too high in mercury to be considered safe for an unborn baby. This includes shark, tilefish, swordfish and king mackerel, which is still considered unsafe when cooked. It’s best to moderate your fish intake since high mercury levels can harm your baby.
Lunchmeats pose the risk of listeria, which can make you very ill and hurt your growing baby too. Deli meats, hot dogs and smoked meats are all off limits. However, some doctors consider them safe as long as they are heated until steaming before eating. Talk to your obstetrician to be sure.
4. Soft Cheeses
Soft cheeses might taste great and they are perfectly safe when you’re not pregnant. However, many soft cheeses aren’t pasteurized, which increases the risk of food borne illnesses that can make you ill and interfere with a healthy pregnancy. Stay away from brie, feta, camembert, blue cheese and some Mexican style cheeses. If the package says the cheese is pasteurized, it’s likely fine to eat. No girl wants to give up her cheese, but it’s important to be careful.
5. Raw Sprouts
They’re super healthy, so they’re perfect for making a healthy baby, right? Not so fast. Raw sprouts often harbor dangerous food borne illnesses, including E.coli and salmonella. Until your little one is born, it’s better to choose other veggies for your salads. Spinach, kale and arugula are yummy choices that offer a similar crunch.
Some doctors say ok to an occasional glass of wine, and it’s always best to follow your obstetrician’s advice. However, drinking anything that contains alcohol while you’re pregnant increases the risk of fetal alcohol syndrome, so it’s probably a good idea to abstain until your little one is born.
7. Unwashed Fruits and Vegetables
Pregnant or not you should always wash your fruits and vegetables before eating them. I mean, just think about how many people have probably touched them at the store. However, it’s especially important to be vigilant while you’re pregnant. Forgetting to wash your produce increases the risk of toxoplasmosis from the soil. Again, this can make you pretty sick so suds up before eating up.
What food will you miss most while you’re pregnant? It’s hard to give up your favorites, but your baby will thank you for her whole life.