Finding out that you are pregnant is a very exciting time. You’ve got so much to think about (like car seats and bassinets) that you don’t want to forget about proper nutrition. That includes staying away from potentially dangerous foods. What you eat while you’re pregnant can affect your baby and the FDA has very specific recommendations. Staying away from the foods below will help keep you and your unborn baby healthy.
Uncooked seafood and shellfish
You need to make sure you cook seafood to 145 degrees to kill bacteria and parasites. Smoked seafood is also a big source of listeria if it has been refrigerated.
This is the most common source for toxoplasma. This is the parasite that you are avoiding by not changing cat litter. It is more likely to get this parasite from undercooked meat than cats though. The FDA has a full list of safe cooking temperatures.
Hot dogs, lunch meat, and processed meats
These are a source of Listeria which is a bacteria that crosses the placenta. It causes issues with the fetus including hydrops. You should ensure that these foods are heated above 160 degrees to kill this bacteria if you choose to eat them.
Raw or undercooked eggs
Eggs especially if not fully cooked are sources of salmonella. So they should be cooked to 160 degrees.
Raw milk or unpasteurized milk/cheeses
Pasteurization is the process of heating milk to kill bacteria. If you eat raw (unpasteurized) milk or cheese, you are at risk for bacterial infections. These bacteria include listeria and E. coli.
Unpasteurized juice and unwashed fruits/vegetables
It is very important to get vitamins and nutrients from fruits and veggies. You need to make sure they are washed well before eating. If you are getting unpasteurized juice from a farmer’s market, a friend, or making it at home you need to boil it. This prevents bacterial growth in the juice.
View the FDA’s resource: Food Safety for your Baby & Me