Top Food to Avoid During Pregnancy! Better be Safe than sorry, right?
1. Raw or under cooked animal products and unwashed fruits and vegetables
- Rare meat, raw oysters, clams, sushi, unpasteurized eggs, may contain an array of bacteria, viruses, and parasites.
- Reduce your risk of illness by completely cooking foods. Stick with vegetarian or cooked sushi varieties when the craving strikes.
Some produce, especially home grown, can harbor parasites that causes toxoplasmosis (infection with the Toxoplasma gondii parasite, one of the world's most common parasites).
Properly washing your fruit and vegetables can protect you from this horrible parasite.
2. Hot dogs, deli meat, raw milk and soft cheeses (both raw and pasteurized)
Better avoid food like Soft cheese. These foods can contain listeria monocytogenes, a pesky microorganism known to cause listeriosis, which may lead to premature delivery, stillbirth, or different genuine medical issues. Delicate cheeses, both crude and purified, are especially vulnerable. NEVER, EVER eat “bathtub” cheese (cheese made by unlicensed cheesemakers).
Bacterium Listeria Monocytogenes
Raw milk is susceptible to Campylobacter and E. Coli. However, you probably to get the latter from leafy greens like spinach, but still you better avoid those kind of food unless you really trusted the farmer source and comfortable with the potential risks. (I wouldn’t!)
Listeria-causing food like smoked fish, meat spreads, and other refrigerated foods like pasta serving of mixed vegetables/salad stored inside deli case, unless warmed/heated to steaming.
3. Fish that contain high mercury
How those fishes can be contaminated with mercury? Well, from the coal fired power plants, smelting, and the burning of waste accumulates in fish, especially huge fish like swordfish and some types of tuna fish so it's a smart idea to avoid these fish.
Mercury effects on children
U.S. Ecological Protection Agency (EPA) reports babies exposed to mercury before birth "might be at an increased risk of poor performance on neurobehavioral tasks, for example, those estimating attention, fine motor function, language skills, visual-spatial abilities /capacities and verbal memory."
As indicated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), pregnant and mother who is breast-feeding her baby ought to eat no more than 12 ounces (340.194 grams) weekly of seafood that low in mercury, including shrimp, salmon, canned light tuna, pollock, tilapia, sardines, and catfish.
4. Contaminated fish
Of course there are other chemical that can contaminate fish besides mercury. In case you eat locally-caught fish, better to be safe to ask your local health department or environmental protection agency whether the lakes and streams you catch your fish from are safe.
In some cases, fish can end up contaminated with polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), a likely human cancer-causing agent that is known to cause significant neurological and motor control issues, including brought down IQ and poor short-term memory in babies.
5. Raw sprouts
According to the FDA, it is advisable that everyone, pregnant or not, to stay away from consuming raw sprouts since they are certainly contaminated with bacteria and other microorganisms. (Not surprisingly!)
Raw vegetables including sunflower, horse feed, broccoli, snow pea, mung bean, radish, clover, and essentially other types of raw sprout. Thoroughly cook sprouts to kill harmful bacteria, nonetheless, are safe to eat.
6. Bisphenol A (BPA)
BPA is an organic synthetic compound used to make numerous plastics and particularly for food and drink containers/holders. It's an endocrine disruptor and can interfere with normal fetal development. At the point when BPAs are cumulated in the body, they may cause infertility and reproductive harm. Likewise, BPA also linked to tumor/cancer, abnormal behavior, diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and early puberty, a known hazard or risk factor for breast cancer.
In spite of the fact that the FDA has not recommended that pregnant women stay away from BPA, they have expressed that "recent investigations and studies indicate serious concern about the potential impacts of BPA on the brain, behavior, and prostate gland of fetuses, newborn children, and children."
How to stay away from BPA
Avoid using plastic water bottles. Use stainless steel or glass water bottles, Mason jars or drink from a glass.
- Use glass or stainless baby bottles and sippy cups
- Don't re-use plastic containers or heated plastic containers. Use glass instead.
- Avoid canned food
- Choose a brand that doesn't contain BPA and BPA linings (for canned foods)
7. Alcoholic and caffeinated drinks
There is no safe limit defined for alcohol consumption during pregnancy, DO NOT DRINK ALCOHOL just to be safe. It is known that alcohol consumption may cause irreversible birth defects.
Numerous studies on animals have shown that caffeine can cause birth defects, premature labor, preterm delivery, reduced fertility, and increase the risk of low-birth weight. There are no conclusive studies conducted on humans but it is better to avoid consuming caffeine while pregnant.
Caffeine can increase heart rate, increased heart rate during pregnancy is not recommended. Caffeine is likewise a diuretic which implies you may have a harder time remaining hydrated (as I mention in previous article, make sure to stay hydrated for breastfeeding too) and hydration very important during pregnancy.
Studies have shown a relationship between caffeine consumption over 200mg a day and miscarriage, while others found no connection.
Caffeine able to cross the placenta and influences the infant. The infant metabolism and liver are not properly developing yet so infant can't process the caffeine the way you can. So the best action is to restrain your caffeine much as you could and don't drink more than 1-2 cups of coffee a day. Basically, DO NOT consume more than 200 mg of caffeine a day
8. Junk Food, DEFINITELY AVOID THEM
Junk food is devoid of nutrition. Below are harmful effects of eating junk food during pregnancy:
- Mother’s diet can influence her baby’s food preferences. You don’t want your baby to develops liking for junk foods or fatty foods right? [Ref]
- Increased risk of allergies, high sugar content food in diet can cause allergies and asthma [Ref]
- High probability to cause genetic abnormalities [Ref]
- Causes high intake of acrylamide (chemical that naturally forms in starchy food products during high-temperature cooking). Studies shown that high level of acrylamide can lead to smaller head circumference and low birth weight in babies [Ref]
- Eating junk food put on excess weight that may risk to various complications (including preeclampsia, birthing a large baby, preterm labor, gestational diabetes, sleep apnea, increased risk of birth defects, miscarriage, and stillbirths) [Ref]
- Junk food have no nutritional value. Its full of sugar, salt, fats, and cholesterol. Excess sugar or salt is obviously no good for your body, especially during pregnancy.
- Can cause digestive problems. It causes gas, bloat, and indigestion. Plus, junk food lack of fiber which is important for smooth bowel movements
- Gestational diabetes, junk food contains high sugar and calories. Studies shown that eating junk food may increase the risk of gestational diabetes. [Ref]