Nutrition During Pregnancy – Foods To Avoid
Food hygienic is extremely important during one’s pregnancy. This is because of possible bacteria and certain harmful chemicals such as alcohol and methylmercury can pass from mother to baby and cause damage to unborn fetus.
A list of foods to be avoided during pregnancy :
Unpasteurized milk; soft cheeses, e.g. Brie, Feta, Camembert and Roquefort; liver pates; and uncooked meat such as hot dogs, ham and luncheon meats. -> These food are prone to a bacteria called Listeria monocytogenese that causes listeriosis, which may result in miscarriages and stillbirth.
Symptoms of listeriosis include fever, muscle aches, and sometimes nausea or diarrhea. In some cases, headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, or convulsions can occur. Pregnant women who are infected may experience only a mild, flu-like illness. If you are pregnant and get listeriosis, taking antibiotics can often prevent infection of the fetus or newborn. Babies who have listeriosis receive the same antibiotics as adults, although a combination of antibiotics is often used until doctors are certain of the diagnosis.
Raw or undercooked meat, poultry, seafood, e.g. raw oyster, cockles, sashimi and sushi, and raw and half-boiled eggs. In raw or uncooked meat, it contain a lot of food borne bacteria and viruses. Changes in your metabolism and circulation during pregnancy, you be be more prone to the risk of bacteria food poisoning.
Avoid large fish as they contain a lot of mercury. Avoid swordfish, shark, tilefish and king mackerel. Limit canned albacore tuna.
Do not consume herbal supplements. Please consult your doctor if you are planning to take these herbs.
Mothers who drink alcohol have a higher risk of miscarriages and still birth. Excessive alcohol consumption may result in fetal alcohol syndrome, including facial deformities, low birth weight and mental retardation.
Unwashed salad and raw vegetables sprouts, including alfalfa, clover, radish, and mung bean.
Unwashed salad may be contaminated with bacteria from the soil, while raw vegetables sprouts contain high levels of germs.
For a healthy pregnancy, you need more than 40 different types of nutrients to sustain good health and promote your unborn child’s growth.
- Folate (Folic acid) – Folate is vitamin B, which helps to prevent neural tube defects (malformations of the brain and spinal cord) in your developing baby and anemia in pregnant women. You can get your rich dose of folate in dark green vegetables (spinach, broccoli, asparagus, citrus fruits and juices, yeast extracts, liver, dried beans and fortified breakfast cereals. However, avoid cooking for a long time as overcooking (heat) destroys folate.
2. Iron is needed for formation of red blood cells. Which your newborn need it to store adequate iron for the first six months of his/her life before starting solid foods. To enhance the absorption of non-heme iron, consume Vitamin C rich foods at the same meal.
3. Vitamin B12 is required for blood formation. It is found in mainly meat, poultry, fish, milk and eggs.
4. Omega-3 Fatty Acids DHA is one of the omega-3 fatty acids found in coldwater deepsea fish, is important for brain and eye development. Studies have shown that pregnant women who eat cold-water fish have babies with higher IQ and better vision than pregnant women who do not. Unfortunately, large deep sea fishes may contain a heavy metal (methylmercury) that is toxic to developing fetus’s neurolocial system. Avoid shark, swordfish, king mackerel (known as “batang fish”) and tilefish (white snapper). Although tuna is good source of DHA, albacore tuna (found mainly in canned white tuna) is higher in methylmecury than other types of tuna (e.g. skipjack, bigeye and yellowfin, common used for canned light tuna) Safe DHA-rich sources include salmon, sardines, herring, halibut, canned light tuna and omega-3 fortified eggs.
We highly recommend 100% wild caught salmon from The Alaska Guys Pte Ltd (Singapore) It’s packed and sealed tightly for freshness.
5. Vitamin A, C, D – Get your sources from Eggs, milk, deep-red and yellow fruits and vegetables (for example, papaya, mango, pumpkin, carrots) and dark leafy vegetables (for example spinach and broccoli)
6. Calcium for strong bones and teeth. Excellent sources of calcium are milk and yogurt. Ikan bilis, sardines, calcium fortified soymilk and fruit juice.
Remember, you should not go on a diet to lose weight when you are pregnant. Instead, focus on healthy eating habits to control the rate of weight gain so that both you and baby will have optimal nutrition.