10 Foods to Avoid During Pregnancy


Pregnancy is a wonderful experience, and as an expecting mom, you want to be able to provide the right nutrients for your baby. As yummy as food might be, there are some things that are not safe for your unborn child and should be eliminated from your everyday diet. Here are 10 foods that you need to be cautious about eating during pregnancy:


Say goodbye to your daily Venti Espresso Macchiato from Starbucks because caffeine is a diuretic and unfortunately, it eliminates fluids from the body. Research shows that large amounts of caffeine are associated with miscarriage, premature birth, low birth weight, and withdrawal symptoms in infants. It is important that you are drinking plenty of water, juice, and milk and limiting the consumption of caffeinated beverages.


Ramen is a dish that is very high in calories and sodium. The average ramen bowl has about 1,190 grams of sodium and is not a pregnant woman’s friend. Pregnancy already makes the body prone to swelling and water retention, and too much sodium only makes those conditions worse. In addition to avoiding processed and fast food, look out for these sodium culprits and keep sodium to 2,300 mg per day.


Liver contains dangerously high amounts of Vitamin A. Too much Vitamin A, especially during the first few months of pregnancy, has been linked to birth defects in babies. Monitor your intake of Vitamin A and avoid high-dose multivitamin supplements, fish liver oil supplements and any supplement containing Vitamin A.


A study from Finland shows too much licorice during pregnancy could affect a baby’s brain since it contains a chemical called glycyrrhizin. Glycyrrhizin blocks the activity of an enzyme that helps protect the fetus from high levels of cortisol, which is sometimes referred to as the stress hormone. This can cause in average a lower IQ in children and greater risk of developing ADHD.


While most raw vegetables can be safe and healthy for you and your baby, certain ones should be eliminated from your diet altogether. Avoid raw sprouts including alfalfa, radish, clover, and mung bean varieties avoided while pregnant. Unclean raw vegetables may contain a parasite known as toxoplasmosis, which can severely harm the baby. It is essential that all veggie are washed to avoid potential exposure to toxoplasmosis from the soil.


A delicious seafood entree for dinner is not the right idea because fish contains high traces of mercury and listeria that can cause issues with brain development of the fetus. However, not all hope is lost! There are some fish products with lower traces of mercury such as:

  • Cat fish
  • Flounder
  • Salmon
  • Mackerel
  • Sardine
  • Canned  Tuna



Deli meats such as hot dogs and salami, some soft cheeses, and raw milk all have the possibility of containing listeria, which causes miscarriages. Listeria is a bacterium that bypasses the placenta targeting the baby. In order to avoid this, heat all deli meats to extremely high temperatures and avoid all unpasteurized dairy.


Some herbs are stimulants that can increase a pregnant women’s heart race and induce early labor. Rosemary, passionflower, and ephedra can have negative effects including uterine and menstrual stimulation, but there is not sufficient evidence to suggest it is harmful to the baby. As a precaution, heed caution when adding certain herbs to food.


Ingesting raw eggs during pregnancy can result in exposure to salmonella. Precautions: resort to purchasing store-bought ice creams, condiments like mayonnaise and dressing because they are less likely to contain raw eggs.


The latex surface of an unripe papaya is said to induce contractions leading to early labor. This is due to the oxytocin and pepsins contained within the latex. Precautions: wait for papaya to ripen or just avoid them during pregnancy.

Even though all hope may seem lost and you would have to avoid many of your favorite dishes, there are plenty of alternative healthy and fun options that one can consider during the 9-month journey to parenthood. Remember, just to stay hopeful and happy; your body and little one will thank you for it. Also, here is our list of the Top 10 Foods to Eat During Pregnancy.

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