FOODS

Pregnant women should not only follow a nutritious diet based on natural foods, but should avoid certain foods that pose a risk to their health and that of the child.

The vast majority of foods that pregnant women should exclude from their diet are of animal origin , so if you are an omnivore, you may be very interested in knowing what these foods and vegetarian alternatives are.

vegan diet based on whole natural foods, supplemented with vitamin B12 and the protocol supplements of folic acid and iodine that are prescribed to all pregnant women, is perfectly adequate.

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1. Moldy cheeses

The blue cheeses , such as Danish blue, Gorgonzola and roquefor , and white mold cheeses showing, such as brie cheese , the camembert or chèvre .

These types of cheeses are less acidic and moist than hard aged cheeses, which makes them an ideal culture medium for harmful bacteria such as listeria.  Listeriosis is rare, but pregnant women are 20 times more vulnerable than other people.

It is very important to avoid the risk of contracting it because listeria crosses the placenta , reaches the fetus and can cause a spontaneous abortion, fetal death or serious diseases in the newborn.

Women who follow a vegan diet can continue to consume cashew-based cheese alternatives that have not been fermented or that have been pasteurized.

2. Eggs

pregnant woman cannot eat raw or lightly cooked eggs because they  may be contaminated with salmonella . Although a salmonella infection is very unlikely to harm your baby,  it can leave you very weak and dehydrated  from diarrhea and vomiting that can last for days.

As in the case of cheeses, vegans do not have that risk. However, they can still enjoy omelets and other preparations with vegetable alternatives to eggs.

3. Undercooked meat

The raw meat or undercooked is dangerous in pregnancy because of the potential risk of toxoplasmosis contracting an infection caused by a parasite found in meat and can cause mental retardation, blindness and epilepsy in children.

It can also be found in unpasteurized goat’s milk , cat feces, or untreated water .

All meat should be well cooked so that it does not bleed or show pink areas. And after cooking, all surfaces with which the meat has been in contact should be thoroughly cleaned.

Once again,  vegan women are safe  and can get the proteins they need from plant sources: legumes, soy derivatives like tofu, seitan, seeds, nuts, and grains.

4. Liver pate

The liverwurst and other foods containing this body are too rich in retinol  (vitamin A) for a pregnant. Too much vitamin A can harm the baby .

The problem does not exist if you get vitamin A from vegetables rich in beta-carotene. This pigment that gives heat to carrots, apricots or squash is transformed by the liver into vitamin A as the body needs it.

Plant-based patés like chickpea hummus or lentil hummus are nutritious and safe.

5. Big blue fish

The bluefin tuna , the swordfish (Emperor), the dogfish , the pike and king mackerel are fatty fish species q ue may contain a hazardous dose of mercury , a heavy metal toxic to neurons. It may also contain carcinogenic dioxins and polychlorinated biphenyls, which are endocrine disruptors.

Health authorities in Spain and in many other countries around the world recommend pregnant women to eat other species of fish: small species such as sardines and white fish.

Oily fish are rich in healthy omega-3 fatty acids , but pregnant women can get the amount they need from plant sources such as oil and crushed flax seeds , walnuts, and chia seeds .

6. Raw seafood

The other and other species of shellfish eaten raw  can poison you with harmful bacteria and viruses .

If you want to enjoy the taste of the sea,  try seaweed ( a very small amount is enough).

7. Caffeine

The caffeine is rapidly absorbed and reaches the placenta and fetus , which does not have the enzymes needed to metabolize it . Too much increases the risk of the baby being born underweight , increasing the chances of future health problems, including diabetes and heart  disease . Too much caffeine can also cause a miscarriage.

Besides coffee, caffeine is naturally found in other foods, such as tea (including green tea) and chocolate , and is added to some sodas and energy drinks.

Be aware that some over-the-counter medications  to treat cold and flu symptoms may contain high doses of caffeine.

If you are used to drinking coffee, you can replace it with chamomile or peppermint infusions . The taste is very different, but the ritual and the heat can comfort you as much or more than a coffee.

8. Sprouts

There is a possibility that salmonella may develop in soybean , alfalfa and other sprouts . Washing is not enough to guarantee their elimination, so pregnant women should not consume them raw.

In general, during pregnancy you should take special care when washing fruits and vegetables.

9. Alcohol

Of course, pregnant women should not consume a drop of alcohol , which increases the risk of miscarriage and stillbirth . A very small dose can already negatively affect brain development and the health of the baby.

Alcohol can lead to fetal alcohol syndrome , which leads to facial deformities, heart defects, and mental retardation.

10. Processed foods

The prepared dishes found in supermarkets can be very comfortable, but often provide few micronutrients and too many calories , salt, fat and sugars.

As pregnant women have increased micronutrient requirements, it is especially important that they avoid high-calorie processed foods and prefer natural whole foods that are very rich in micronutrients, such as vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes, and fruits.

The sugars added to ready meals, industrial pastries or soft drinks multiply the risk of obesity and gestational diabetes , which can lead to complications in childbirth and increase the risk of the child being overweight.

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