Being pregnant is an unforgettable experience. It’s an exciting time in a woman’s life. Changes occur each day. Hormone levels increase. Your body and attitude change. It’s a time filled with new things. In fact, given all these changes, the topic of what’s permissible to eat and what’s not becomes a significant question that most pregnant women find themselves grappling with. In this article, we shall be looking at 13 bad foods for pregnant women.
Food, both during and after pregnancy, is a big issue. What one does eat affects the child inside, after all. The information about food and pregnancy can be pretty fuzzy. The good news is, however, generally what you can and cannot eat stays the same, except for some notable exceptions.
Most nutritionists suggest that pregnant women beware of certain foods, while completely steering clear of others. A lot of this is general knowledge, but when you delve into the exact details, the fine print as it were, it can get rather confusing. It becomes difficult to decipher what’s actually bad for you.
The matter gets more convoluted when family and friends are so keen on offering their own tips and advice. Even strangers like to get in on the game and tell you what you should and shouldn’t eat, often without your solicitation. This extra information can become quite disconcerting. The facts are confounded with urban myths and folklore.
Indeed, matters aren’t helped by the fact that it seems like every time you turn around there’s a new article published in some obscure scientific journal that purports such and such food is actually bad for you or vice versa, it’s actually really good for you. Reports often contradict each other. This mishmash of information only ends up making more women even more confused.
In many ways when you think of this wealth of extraneous and incomplete knowledge leaves you more confused than you started off.
The question of what one can eat and what one shouldn’t eat when pregnant can be boiled down to a few basic guidelines. The thing to remember is that you should be smart. Eat in moderation and put your common sense to work. Don’t over indulge.
You certainly don’t need to be reminded that this is one of the most important times of your life. I am pretty sure you have heard that plenty of times before. But everything that you do and (more specifically) everything that you eat will have an effect, one way or another, on your health and your baby’s development.
To enjoy the many benefits of good health just cultivate the habit of eating the right foods, including confidence in knowing that you’re providing the absolute best for your baby. Eat the wrong foods and you could spend your pregnancy feeling sluggish, bloated, achy, and constantly tired. Even worse, you could come in contact with one of several dangerous bacteria. It is needless to say, it is vitally important to learn about food to avoid for pregnant women.
Below are 13 bad foods for pregnant women:
1. Junk Food – It really has no redeeming qualities. Aside from large doses of salt and/or sugar, some junk foods contain synthetic vitamin A, which can be toxic.
2. Trans Fats are found in many snack foods and packaged prepared foods. They’re horrible for your health and horrible for your baby. They increase the risk of heart attack and some cancers, and raise levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol. (Side note: it’s also prevalent in many baby foods, such as cereals and cookies). Watch for Trans Fats and avoid them!
3. MSG (Mono Sodium Glutamate) is an additive that’s increasingly used by manufacturers to alter the taste of various foods. This has the ability to cause headaches, dizziness, nausea and vomiting.
4. Caffeine has been associated with low birth weight and should be avoided, if possible. If you must have it, at least keep it to a minimum.
5. Alcohol – Needless to say, it can have detrimental effects on the fetus, so please avoid it.
6. Soy – Often thought of as a health food, can actually block absorption of vital nutrients.
7. Certain seafood – Stay away from seafood with high amounts of mercury. That list includes swordfish, mackerel, and shark, to name a few. High doses of mercury could damage your baby’s nervous system. On the other hand, some types of fish (with much lower mercury levels) can be very beneficial.
8. Raw and undercooked meat – Watch out for raw and undercooked meat and seafood. It could be contaminated with salmonella, coliform bacteria or toxoplasmosis.
9. Raw eggs can be contaminated with salmonella. This also includes foods containing raw eggs, such as mayonnaise, and Hollandaise sauce.
10. Raw sprouts have even been found to contain salmonella in some cases.
11. Soft cheeses (blue, Brie, feta) can also contain dangerous hidden bacteria.
12. Unpasteurized milk – Stay away from anything containing unpasteurized milk, which, once again, can contain bacteria.
13. Liver (including pate) can contain high levels of vitamin A. Too much of it can increase the risk of birth defects.
As you can see, the list of food to avoid for pregnant women is quite extensive, and this is just a sampling. The negative effects of these foods can range from minor annoyances to severe illness. So it’s very important for you and your developing baby that you choose your foods carefully.