Foods to Avoid during Pregnancy

          Written By Gloria Tsang, RD on Apr 01, 2011


                    pregnant woman

A healthy, well-balanced diet is important during
pregnancy. Most fresh foods are wholesome and safe to eat, however some
foods should be avoided during pregnancy.

What not to eat when you are pregnant:

  • Raw Meats and Seafood including sushi – all
    uncooked and rare meats and seafood should be avoided due to high risk
    of listeria and salmonella poisoning.
  • Deli meats including hot dogs – these deli meats
    might be contaminated with listeria bacteria which may result in
    miscarriage or even a stillbirth. It’s safe to eat deli meats if you
    reheat them until steaming hot.
  • Refrigerated smoked seafood – for the same reason
    of listeria contamination. It is safe if they are contained in cooked
    dishes. Canned and shelf-stable versions are safe to eat.
  • Raw eggs – raw eggs may contain salmonella. Some
    Caesar salad dressings, mayonnaise, homemade ice cream and custards as
    well as Hollandaise sauces may be made with raw eggs. It is best to
    check with your server in a restaurant; if in doubt, it is best to avoid
    it. In addition, unpasteurized eggnog should be avoided.
  • Fish high in mercury – avoid high-mercury fish such
    as Shark, Swordfish, King Mackerel and Tilefish. Also limit fish intake
    to no more than 2 servings per week. For more info – read Is it Safe to
    eat Fish during Pregnancy?
  • Soft cheese – avoid the following soft cheeses:
    Feta, Brie, and Camembert cheeses, blue-veined cheeses, queso blanco,
    queso fresco and Panela. They are safe to eat if they are labelled
  • Refrigerated pâtes or meat spreads – for the same
    reason of listeria contamination. It is safe to eat the canned or
    shelf-stable versions.
  • Liver – liver is a rich source of iron. However it
    contains a high level of Vitamin A. Large amounts of Vitamin A can be
    harmful to the baby.
  • Unpasteurized milk and juices. In other words, raw
    milk and untreated juices.
  • Alcohol – many documented fetal abnormalities and
    birth defects have been associated with alcohol use during pregnancy.

Enjoy a healthy pregnancy!