Foods to Avoid During Pregnancy


During pregnancy, the mother and the child are even more susceptible to certain bacteria that are housed in certain foods. These bacteria, parasites, and viruses have the potential of causing foodborne illnesses. The baby or fetus may also be susceptible to toxins that are present in the foods you eat, for example, mercury in fish. Here is a list of foods you must avoid during pregnancy to ensure the health of the baby and the mother alike.

Unpasteurized Milk

Unpasteurized milk and milk products are to be avoided during pregnancy. Unpasteurized milk is consistent with the bacteria ‘listeria’ which must be avoided during pregnancy as it carries the unmentionable threat of miscarriage. Make sure whatever milk products you consume are made of pasteurized milk.

Soft Cheese Made From Unpasteurized Milk

Soft cheese that is made from unpasteurized milk is a food that should be avoided during pregnancy as it contains the bacteria ‘E Coli’ and ‘Listeria’. These bacteria can cause foodborne illnesses to the mother and the baby - and thus, should be avoided in totality when pregnant.

Certain Fish Kinds

Certain kinds of fish, especially those categorized as big fish such as mackerel, swordfish, and shark, etc. come under foods to avoid during pregnancy. The reason being, these big fish harbor quite a large amount of mercury as compared to smaller fish. Mercury consumed during pregnancy has been associated with delays in brain development and damage pertaining to the nervous system of the baby.

Raw Or Uncooked Sprouts

Certain vegetables when consumed raw, especially sprouts, may harbor the bacteria ‘E Coli’ and ‘salmonella’. These two bacteria are associated with detrimental effects on the fetus. Consuming vegetables is highly essential while pregnant as they garner a ton of minerals deemed necessary for the healthy nutrition required by the mother and the fetus alike. In order to prevent the attack of these bacteria, make sure all the vegetables consumed are thoroughly washed and preferably cooked.


Foods such as hotdogs should be avoided during pregnancy as they may contain the bacteria ‘listeria’. Listeria has the potential of causing stillbirth, miscarriage and other serious health problems.

Undercooked Or Raw Eggs

Undercooked eggs and raw eggs may contain the bacteria ‘salmonella’, which is known to have dangerous implications on the health of the child. When consuming egg, make sure it is cooked to a 160F in order to eliminate the unwanted bacteria packaged with it.


Meat, especially deli meat is a pregnancy food you must avoid. When consuming meat during pregnancy, make sure it is properly steamed at least to discard the bacteria it may garner. Meat is known to consist of the bacteria ‘listeria’ which has been associated with serious problems for the child such as blood poisoning and may even be life-threatening.

Smoked Seafood

Refrigerated and smoked seafood should be avoided during pregnancy, in particular, those carrying the labels ‘lox, nova style, kippered, or jerky’ as they may consist of listeria. Canned seafood and unrefrigerated shelf staffed seafood are usually safe to consume.


Studies conducted on the safety of consuming caffeine during pregnancy carry conflicting results. While some claim it is safe to consume coffee in moderation, others conclude for it to be associated with the possibility of miscarriages, premature birth, and under-weight babies. In order to take the safer route, avoid caffeine during the first trimester of pregnancy to prevent miscarriages. Furthermore, because caffeine is a diuretic, it may result in loss of essential fluids within the body coupled with the loss of calcium. Hence, it is safer to consume a lot of water, juices and pasteurized milk rather than caffeine during pregnancy. 


Alcohol is one of the topmost important ingredients to avoid during pregnancy. Alcohol takes away the oxygen and other important nutrient required by developing cells, preventing optimal fetal development. Consumption of alcohol has a permanent effect on the baby’s intellectual and growth abilities and no level or amount of alcohol is safe at any point during pregnancy.

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