Here’s Why You Should Avoid the Following Foods During Pregnancy

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The first thing that people learn after they get pregnant is what are the foods to avoid eating. However, you can be very disappointed if you like sushi, coffee, or steak. Fortunately, there is more for pregnant women to eat than there is to avoid. While certain foods can only be consumed rarely, others should be avoided completely. Here you will know about the avoid foods during pregnancy.

Here are a few foods and beverages to avoid or cut down on while you are pregnant:

Avoid the Following Foods During Pregnancy

Smoked or Raw Fish

Although, this might disappoint people that love Sushi, it is an important one. Raw fish, specifically, shellfish, can cause many infections that can be viral, bacterial, or parasitic, such as norovirus, Vibrio, Salmonella, and Listeria.

While a few of these infections only affect you with symptoms like dehydration and weakness, a few infections can even be passed on to your baby with serious consequences.

Pregnant women are prone to listeria infections.  Based on studies from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or CDC, pregnant women are 10 times more prone to get infected by Listeria than other people. 

This bacterium can be found in soil and contaminated water or plants, and raw fish can become infected during processing, including smoking or drying.

Listeria bacteria can be passed on to your baby through the placenta, even if you’re not showing any signs of illness. This can lead to premature delivery, miscarriage, stillbirth, and other serious health problems, according to the CDC.

It is definitely advised to avoid raw fish and shellfish, including many sushi dishes. But don’t worry, you’ll enjoy it that much more after the baby is born.

Undercooked, Raw, and Processed Meat

Raw and uncooked meat come with very similar affects. of raw fish. Consuming undercooked or raw meat can increase the risk of infection from several bacteria or parasites like Toxoplasma, E. coli, Listeria, and Salmonella.

These bacteria might even put the health of your unborn baby at risk, leading to stillbirth or severe neurological illnesses, like intellectual disability, blindness, and epilepsy.

Most bacteria can be found on the surface of whole pieces of meat, while other bacteria linger inside the muscle fibers.

A few whole cuts of meat like tenderloins, sirloins, ribeye from beef, or lamb and veal might be safe to consume when not cooked thoroughly. Having said that, this only applies when the piece of meat is whole or uncut, and cooked on the outside.

Cut meat, including meat patties, burgers, minced meat, pork, and poultry, should never be consumed raw or undercooked. So, keep those burgers on the grill well done for now.

Hot dogs, lunch meat, and deli meat can also be concerning during, although it might come as a surprise to most people. These meats might be infected with various bacteria during processing or storage.

It is advised that Pregnant women do not consume processed meat products unless they’ve been reheated and brought to be steaming hot.

Raw Eggs

Raw eggs can be contaminated with Salmonella bacteria. Symptoms of salmonella infections include fever, nausea, vomiting, stomach cramps, and diarrhea.

However, in rare cases, the infection may cause cramps in the uterus, leading to premature birth or stillbirth.

Foods that commonly contain raw eggs include:

  • lightly scrambled eggs
  • poached eggs
  • hollandaise sauce
  • homemade mayonnaise
  • some homemade salad dressings
  • homemade ice cream
  • homemade cake icings

Most commercial products that contain raw eggs are made with pasteurized eggs and are safe to consume. However, you should always read the label to make sure.

To be on the safe side, make sure to always cook eggs thoroughly or use pasteurized eggs. Save those super runny yolks and homemade mayo for until after the baby is born.

Organ Meat

Organ meat can be a great source for many nutrients including, iron, vitamin B12, vitamin A, zinc, selenium, and copper, which are good for your health and your baby. However, eating a lot of animal-based vitamin A or preformed vitamin A, is not advisable during pregnancy. Eating a lot of preformed vitamin A, especially during the first trimester of pregnancy, can lead to congenital malformations and miscarriage. Although, it is mostly associated with vitamin A supplements, it is safe for you to keep your consumption of organ meats like liver limited.

When you’re pregnant, it’s essential to avoid foods and beverages that may put you and your baby at risk. Although most foods and beverages are perfectly safe to enjoy, some, like raw fish, unpasteurized dairy, alcohol, and fish high in mercury should be avoided. Additionally, some foods and beverages such as coffee and foods high in added sugar, should be limited in order to promote a healthy pregnancy.

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