Food to avoid while pregnant
Pregnancy is one of the most challenging and sensitive periods in a woman’s life. Needless to say, nutrition is a crucial part of growing a human being and thus expecting mothers need to pay attention to what they eat, but even more importantly recognize which foods to avoid.
As many would expect, we will start with mercury-rich fish. Now is the time to learn to love the vegetarian sushi rolls – as in farewell sashimi and hello avocado California roll. Jokes aside, mercury in higher amounts can be toxic to a nervous system, immune system and kidneys. The list of mercury-rich fish is topped by tuna and mackerel, but it is important not to exclude fish altogether. Consuming low-mercury fish during pregnancy is considered healthy, and these fish can be eaten up to 2 times per week. Having said that, undercooked fish is a no-no so back to the sushi ban for the foreseeable future mummies-to-be.
Seeing as we are culinary buzz killers over here, undercooked meat is also off the proverbial table. This means no carpaccio or steak tartare, and ‘’well done please’’ will have to be your default answer to ‘’how would you like your steak done Ma’am”.
The limitations extend to other meals than just dinners. To avoid the pesky salmonella, your breakfast while pregnant should not include lightly scrambled or poached eggs. Homemade ice cream and homemade mayo are also risky, seeing as they have not been pasteurized.
Moving on to coffee – a beverage sacred to many mums – pregnant women are generally advised to cut down their caffeine intake to about 2–3 cups of coffee a day. Caffeine is absorbed very quickly and passes easily into both the placenta and fetus. Because unborn babies don’t yet have the primary enzyme needed to metabolize caffeine, while not toxic as such, in high levels, caffeine can lead to diminished growth in babies. Once your baby is born, however, you are welcome to love your Nespresso machine again.
Lastly: proper food hygiene and preparation is always recommended, especially during pregnancy. Make sure to rinse all your raw fruit and veggies, eat organically and limit your intake of processed food. Those habits will serve you and your family even after your pregnancy, and as for the raw food, we guarantee that you’ll genuinely enjoy that first take out sushi once it’s back on the menu.