Foods to Avoid When Pregnant

Foods to Avoid When Pregnant

It is always important to eat well and carefully, but when pregnant, the choice we make affect more than just ourselves! Here is a list of foods to avoid to reduce the risks of problems for you and your unborn child:

Raw or Undercooked Seafood

Sushi and sashimi are a popular food, but should be not be eaten while pregnant. Harmful bacteria and viruses can be lurking in raw fish, oysters, mussels, or clams. While you are pregnant, only eat well-cooked fish and seafood to ensure you are not exposing yourself of your baby to these dangers. Also, note when pollution might be present in seafood as fetuses are under greater risk when exposed to small amounts of contaminants.

Fish and Seafood High in Mercury

Certain species of fish naturally have high concentrations of mercury in their bodies. Avoid these types of fish: swordfish, shark, king mackerel, and tilefish.

Smoked Seafood

While being “smoked” may sound like it is cooked, this is frequently not the case. Lox, nova style, kippered, jerky, or pate can be contaminated with listeria which has been known to cause miscarriages by crossing the placenta and infecting the baby. Only consume smoked seafood in a fully cooked meal such as when it is used in a casserole.

Deli Meat

Deli meat is another food to remove from your pregnancy diet due to the potential for listeria contamination.

Soft and Blue-Veined Cheeses

Some cheeses are also susceptible to listeria contamination. Soft cheeses such as brie and camembert as well as soft, blue-veined cheeses such as Roquefort. Like raw seafood and deli meat, these cheeses can cause listerosis resulting in miscarriage, still birth, or severe illness in your baby.

Liver and Vitamin A

Avoid supplements such as vitamins, fish oil, or anything that might have high doses of Vitamin A. Also, avoid liver and liver products. Too much Vitamin A causes severe birth defects. Note that acne medication, Accutane, and even topical medications with high doses of retinol contain dangerous quantities of Vitamin A.

Raw or Undercooked Eggs

Eggs are frequently tainted with salmonella. If undercooked, this potent bacteria can leave you or your baby very sick. Raw eggs hide in some foods you might not think of like Hollandaise sauce, mayonnaise, Caesar salad dressings, and homemade ice cream or custard.  Cook eggs thoroughly before eating this healthy, high protein food.

Unpasteurized Dairy Products

While unpasteurized milk is popular in some circles who seek ultra-healthy lifestyles through organic, local selections, it is not a good idea while pregnant. Even some things in your grocery store are prepared using unpasteurized processes. Avoid feta, blue cheese, as well as most Mexican cheeses such as queso blanco, queso fresco, and panela. These unpasteurized products may harbor dangerous bacteria.

This information is based on information from

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