banned-foodsBefore you’re pregnant, you might have had a vague idea that pregnant women shouldn’t eat cheese and drink alcohol. But, once you find out you’re pregnant, you suddenly discover the seemingly endless list of very bad, no good foods.

And you probably freak out because you ate that bad food just this week.

Uh oh.

If you’re feeling fine, there’s probably no harm done. Most of these foods are on the no no list because of the risk of food-borne bacteria that cause illness. If you’re worried though, see your doctor.

The main risky bacteria are listeria, salmonella, and toxoplasmosis. These bacteria can cause serious side effects during pregnancy including miscarriage, low birth weight, or illness. Avoiding them is the best way to go, however, cooking at a high temperature will usually make them safe enough to eat.

  1. Processed Meat – ham, chicken, salami – don’t eat, unless cooked.
  2. Raw Meat – including sushi and make sure you cook your meat til it’s no longer rare.
  3. Cold Cooked Meat – eg. Chicken meat from a salad bar
  4. Pate
  5. Raw Seafood, Ready to Eat Prawns
  6. Sushi
  7. Soft and Semi-soft cheeses – brie, camembert, ricotta, fetta, blue
  8. Soft serve icecream
  9. Fried Icecream
  10. Raw milk
  11. Raw eggs – must cook until the yolk is firm. No cake batter, cookie dough, or mayonnaise.
  12. Prepackaged Salads/Salad Bar Salads
  13. Any kind of sprouts
  14. Stuffing from Chicken or turkey
  15. Any processed food item more than 1-2 days old.
  16. Leftovers more than 1 day old.
  17. Liver
  18. Anything very high in salt
  19. Fish high in mercury
  20. Too much Caffeine
  21. Alcohol

I know it might seem like everything is suddenly on the naughty list. So, what’s a pregnant momma to do? You don’t want to have to carry around a list of foods and check before each meal whether you can eat it.

Here’s my rule of thumb:

If it’s not freshly cooked to well-done and hot, don’t eat it.

Over to you – were you surprised by any of the foods on this list?