With that being said, you now must be wondering what all foods must be avoided for a healthy pregnancy. Don’t stress too much, we’ve got you, mama!
Here is a list of foods that should be avoided during pregnancy:
1. Fish containing mercury:
Fish such as shark, swordfish, king mackerel, and tilefish have high mercury levels and must be avoided during pregnancy. Mercury, an element found in oceans, streams, and lakes is harmful and affect baby’s nervous system or may cause developmental delays in babies. If you feel like having a fish, you can go for fish such as salmon, catfish, cod which have low levels of mercury.
2. Raw or undercooked eggs:
You should not eat raw, undercooked eggs as they contain harmful bacteria called salmonella, which can cause diarrhea, vomiting, fever, and food poisoning.
So, it is important to avoid eating desserts, sauces, and homemade seasonings that have raw eggs in it, like homemade mayonnaise or Caesar salad dressing. This may not affect your baby’s health adversely but can weaken your immune system.
3. Deli meats:
You should avoid deli meats, or ready-to-eat meats, found in sandwich meat, cold cuts, lunch meat, hotdogs, and sliced meats. They contain listeria, a bacteria found in contaminated water and soil. If contracted while pregnant, it could cause complications like miscarriage or premature birth.
4. Unpasteurized milk:
It is unsafe to drink unpasteurized or raw milk that comes directly from the farm during pregnancy. It has no nutritional advantage, and raw milk and its products have higher risk of food-borne diseases. They contain harmful bacteria such as salmonella, listeria, E.coli that can cause bowel infections, diarrhea, and general discomfort
5. Soft cheeses:
Soft cheeses such as Camembert, Roquefort, Gorgonzola, brie, feta, blue cheese, queso fresco, queso blanco, and panela are a big no during pregnancy unless they are pasteurized. Unpasteurized soft cheeses contain a lot of water that may contain listeria which can cause headaches, chills, convulsions, and meningitis, and can also affect the baby’s nervous system.
6. Unwashed fruits and vegetables:
Fruits and vegetables are essential to a perfect balanced diet during pregnancy, but you need to ensure to wash them well before eating. Unwashed fruits and veggies carry Toxoplasma and listeria found in soil that is harmful for the baby.
7. Excess caffeine:
Though you may love your latte, but your baby will not. Higher amounts of caffeine could increase your chances of miscarriage and low birth weight babies. You should limit your caffeine intake. Caffeine is also found in tea, chocolate, and many energy drinks. Caffeine is a stimulant, it can disturb your baby’s sleep and normal movement patterns.
8. Canned foods:
Canned foods, including fruits, vegetables, and sodas are harmful for the baby.
The lining of the food cans contains Bisphenol A (BPA), a toxic substance that affects the fetal endocrine activity and can cause problems like infertility, cancer, liver ailments, and heart diseases in pregnant women. These canned foods might be too old to eat and nurture harmful bacteria due to their long shelf life.
9. Sugar-rich foods:
Sweet cravings are very common during pregnancy but it is not healthy. You need to cut down on sugar-rich foods such as desserts, candies, cakes, ice creams, biscuits, chocolates, and sweetened beverages. They can worsen pregnancy discomforts like nausea, vomiting, constipation, heartburn, increase weight, and contribute to gestational diabetes in babies.
There is no amount of alcohol that is considered safe when you are pregnant. The moment you find out you’re pregnant, it’s important to stop drinking alcohol immediately. Exposing your baby to alcohol in the womb can interfere with the healthy growth of the fetus. Alcohol gets accumulates in the baby’s organism as they are unable to eliminate it It can even lead to Fetal Alcohol Syndrome.