What Foods and Drinks are Safe During Pregnancy?
What you're trying to avoid is bacteria and mercury, both of which can be harmful to a fetus. Germs that are harmless to a healthy adult can be life-threatening to a fetus. For instance, exposure to food-borne germs like listeria, salmonella, E. coli and toxoplasmosis could lead to spontaneous miscarriage, premature birth or even birth defects.
You can lessen your risk of contracting one of these illnesses by avoiding foods that tend to carry the bacteria, namely uncooked seafood, rare and undercooked beef or poultry, unpasteurized milk and soft cheeses. You should also wash thoroughly after handling raw meat and unwashed vegetables.
Another potential risk to pregnancy health: certain types of fish. Due to the risk of mercury exposure, the FDA recommends that pregnant woman limit their fish intake to one 12 ounce serving per week. Is it safe during pregnancy to eat shrimp, canned or wild salmon, trout and catfish? Yes, but avoid fish that are large and eat other fish, such as shark, swordfish, king mackerel and tilefish.
If you're heading out to the sushi bar, it's best to stick to the California rolls (or cooked rolls). And at the steakhouse, don't go pinker than medium. Uncooked seafood and meat can cause listeria and salmonella, which are especially harmful during pregnancy.
Is it safe during pregnancy to eat fish found in contaminated lakes and rivers that may have been exposed to high levels of industrial pollutants? The answer is definitely NO. It's better to be safe than sorry, right?