Pregnancy is one of the most beautiful phases in a woman’s life. Not only does the body change, the very way you think, the very way you feel, the very way you emote and respond, your priorities, your attitude, your personality, your lifestyle……well, just about everything is in the process of a change. When you are at such a threshold, taking every little support from nature to facilitate the change in a way it would turn beneficial for us becomes imperative. And eating the right kind of food is one of the major aspects that concern us. Well in this article we aren’t gonna discuss what a pregnant woman needs to eat, rather we are gonna look into what foods to avoid when you are pregnant.
Frequent cravings for certain type of food is very natural during pregnancy. Just because you crave for it, doesn’t mean it is good for the baby. While everybody seems to have varied opinions about what to eat and what not to, one tends to get confused over a period of time. Therefore it is advised you take an opinion of a certified pregnancy health expert or a physician. Down here we have listed a few foods to avoid during pregnancy. Do check them out.
#1. Certain Types of Seafood
No, don’t you worry, we are not asking you to give up your favourite sea food entirely, and you just need to make sure of being a little careful in avoiding certain types of sea foods.
#2. Fish Containing Mercury
Even slight quantity of mercury can cause serious damage to the development of the fetus and brain of the mother. Fish foods to avoid in first month of pregnancy are that contain high levels of mercury such as Mackerel, Swordfish, Shark and Tilefish.
#3. Smoked Seafood
Smoked seafood must also be avoided at any circumstances. They are usually contaminated with Listeria Bacteria which are not good for pregnant women.
#4. Raw Shellfish
Raw or under-cooked shellfish like mussels, clam and oysters can cause sea borne sickness. Cooking them substantially can help reduce the risk, but not the infections related to algae present in them. There it is best to avoid any kind of shell fish during pregnancy.
#5. Raw and Under-Cooked Eggs
What not to eat during pregnancy? Raw and under-cooked eggs are a big no-no for pregnant women. Any homemade dish that contains raw eggs also must be avoided. Raw eggs usually might have tinge of salmonella bacteria that cause frequent vomiting and diarrhoea. Though substantially cooked eggs are really healthy for the developing baby, any form or rawness needs to be avoided. You just need to make sure you cook them until both the egg whites and yolk are nice and firm.
#6. Under-Cooked Meat
Foods to avoid in early pregnancy included meat. For a non-vegetarian woman, meat is very essential since her body gets used to the high protein and energy content in it. She also needs to make sure the meat is cooked totally without any rawness in the core of it. Researchers have proven that raw or under-cooked meat contains certain dormant, undamaged bacteria and parasites that are potential threats for the baby’s health. Instead of panicking, you just need to cook the meat very well until all the rawness is gone; this destroys any bacteria or parasite in the deeper layers of the chunks.
#7. Raw or Unpasteurised Dairy Products
By now you must have encountered lots of suggestions roaming around how good Milk and dairy products are for the mother as well as the child. Not all of it is wrong. Milk and dairy are really good for women during pregnancy. It is just that raw or unpasteurised or half boiled milk/dairy has a risk of carrying certain bacteria and parasites that may cause digestive issues apart from food poisoning. During pregnancy, a woman’s body is super-sensitive. You just have to boil the milk enough for a minimum of 20 minutes or buy the products which are pasteurised before they are packed. This shall kill most of the bacteria settled in the milk.
#8. Caffeine Containing Products
Caffeine is generally not good for the system. Though in low quantities it doesn’t create that much of a trouble, it is better to avoid as much as possible. Especially during pregnancy caffeine is to be avoided at all circumstances as it acts as a diuretic and is linked to low weight of the fetus. Caffeine is more dangerous as it is often hidden in many processed products you never expected. Apart from being abundant in Coffee, Tea, chocolates, caffeine has a significant part in most energy drinks and the general cold & flu related medicines.
#9. Canned Foods
Irrespective of pregnancy, canned foods must be avoided as much as possible. Not only are they packed and stored for longer period of time, they are filled with synthetic preservatives and chemicals that are harmful for your health. They also develop a certain level of inertia which when had, make you very lethargic and consumes a whole lot of energy. Pregnant women especially must avoid eating canned food at all times. It is always best to have fresh home-made food.
#10. Nitrate Rich Foods
Usually nitrate rich foods are not harmful to health, but excessive nitrates may also cause certain imbalances in the system. Nitrates are also not very good for the fetus. It may hinder the developmental process of the child. This may lead to mild or sever developmental anomalies in the child. Foods like Meat, bacon, sausages, diet coke, artificial sweetener etc. contain high levels of nitrate. Try avoiding these nitrate rich foods and stick to a more natural and fresh diet.
#11. Street/Junk Food
As yummy and mouth-watering as they may seem, street food are very bad for pregnant women. We know right now, you must be craving for those delicious spicy, tangy, sour treats sold on the road side stalls, it is highly advised not to go for them during pregnancy. Not only are they unhealthy street / junk food always as a high risk of contamination due to excessive exposure. Also they have a very low nutritional value. So what good can they probably do? Nothing but triggering your taste buds. If your health and the baby’s health are of paramount importance to you, you must avoid Street/Junk food at all circumstances.
Most people are aware of the fact that they need to avoid Alcohol and similar beverages. Some doctors recommend that you completely avoid alcohol when you are expecting, while others say occasional sipping is alright. For decades, scientific study has proven the ill effects of excessive alcohol consumption over a child’s development, but is it applicable for smaller amounts too?
Doctors say, the problem with drinking alcohol during pregnancy is that there is no particular quantity that has been approved of to be safe. It is also difficult to predict the repercussions of alcohol during pregnancy due to the varied levels of enzymes that break down alcohol, in each individual’s body. Studies have shown that a pregnant woman with lower levels of these enzymes make her more susceptible to harm because the alcohol may circulate in her body without being broken down to simpler compounds for a relatively long period of time.
Getting your enzyme levels checked regularly can be cumbersome. Therefore it is in generally advised to all pregnant women to avoid any kind of alcohol and related beverages completely until the baby is delivered. It is always better to be safe than experimenting when it comes to generating a fresh life.