You just discovered you’re pregnant, and you can’t wait to bring your little bundle of joy into this world. But, at what cost?
Successful pregnancy requires certain precautions. In fact, what you eat is paramount to the delivery of a fully developed and healthy baby. Therefore, while we are free to consume most foods, certain foods can put you and your baby at risk.
Here are some of the foods to avoid for a healthy pregnancy:
You can consume most types of fish during pregnancy. Eating fish is not only good for your health but the baby’s development as well. Even so, there are types of fish you should avoid and limit the amount of some others.
We recommend avoiding swordfish, shark, king mackerel, and marlin due to their high levels of mercury. You should also limit the amount of tuna you consume per week because it contains more mercury content than others do.
Even though the amount of mercury we consume from fish isn’t harmful to most people, it could affect the fetus’s developing nervous systems if pregnant women consume high levels of mercury.
Pregnant women should avoid eating more than two portions a week of oily fish such as trout, salmon, herring, and king mackerel because they are more likely to contain pollutants like polychlorinated biphenyls and dioxins.
Avoid eating raw fish, as well. Always cook shellfish, including crab, mussels, prawns, lobster, clams, and scallops thoroughly before eating.
Shellfish contains harmful viruses and bacteria that can result in food poisoning for the pregnant woman.
If you intend to eat raw or lightly cooked fish in individual dishes like sushi, then make sure that the fresh wild fish has been frozen first. Wild fish also contains small parasitic worms that are harmful to pregnant women.
By freezing the fish, you kill the worms making raw fish safe to consume. Cooking raw fish also kills these worms.
Milk and Yogurt
During pregnancy, stick to pasteurized or ultra-heat treated milk, also referred to as long-life milk. If the milk is raw or unpasteurized, make sure to boil it first before consumption.
Avoid consuming unpasteurized sheep or goat’s milk, or consuming food products made from them like soft goat’s cheese.
With homemade yogurt, make sure it is made with pasteurized milk. However, all types of yogurt, including live, bio, or low fat, are safe to consume during pregnancy.
Vitamin and Fish Oil Supplements
Pregnant women should avoid taking high-dose fish liver oil supplements, multivitamin supplements, or any other supplements that contain vitamin A.
Consuming too much caffeine could result in the birth of underweight babies, which increases their risk of health issues later in life. Excess caffeine consumption has also been linked to miscarriages.
Caffeine is found in most foods like coffee, chocolate, and tea. It is also added to some energy drinks and soft drinks. Certain beverages like green tea also contains the same caffeine content as regular tea.
Some flu and cold remedies, as well. Hence, when taking these remedies, make sure to consult your doctor, pharmacist, or midwife first.
Pregnant women who don’t want to cut out caffeine ultimately can limit their caffeine consumption to 200mg per day.
To cut down on caffeine during pregnancy, you should try decaffeinated coffee and tea, mineral water, or fruit juice instead of regular coffee, tea, energy drinks, and cola.
We recommend drinking herbal teas in moderation because there is very little information on their safety during pregnancy.
During pregnancy, avoid drinking more than four cups of herbal tea daily, and consult your GP or midwife to find out herbal products that are safe for you to consume.
To learn more about food avoidance during pregnancy, visit Childmode.