It's only for nine months!
Just when you think you can ease back a bit on the calorie counting, latest fad diets and pudding refusals, there comes a whole new list of food rules for pregnancy.
At a glance
- Raw shellfish should be avoided because of the risk of food-poisoning
- Pâté may contain listeria and must be avoided
- Eggs with solid yolks and whites are fine to enjoy
Obviously the main mantra for eating during pregnancy is healthy and wholesome – but there are some food stuffs that could pose a health risk and should be avoided while you've got baby on board (but just imagine how great they'll taste when you can have them again nine months down the line!).
Soft cheeses can carry a bacteria which could cause listeria, so avoid mould-ripened cheese like Camembert and Brie, including those made from goats' milk. Soft blue-veined cheeses like Roquefort, Gorgonzola and Danish blue should also be off the menu while you're expecting
Eggs are nutritious and protein rich and can be used for some fabulous dishes. The Food Standards Agency has confirmed that pregnant women can return to eating runny eggs – as long as they have the British Lion stamp on. The new advice, confirmed in October 2017, replaces the previous warning that vulnerable groups should eat eggs only when fully cooked. The British Lion Code of Practice has effectively eliminated salmonella from British Lion eggs.
Your milk needs to be pasteurised, so avoid 'raw' unpasteurised milk (cows', goats' or sheep's) in your cuppa, or any products made from it (so don't cook with it). If you have no choice but to use unpasteurised milk, boil it first.
Pâté – including vegetable varieties – can contain listeria and should be totally off the menu for mums-to-be.
Make sure all your meat is well cooked and never pink or rare, and do not eat anything that is raw or undercooked. Liver should be avoided as it can contain a lot of Vitamin A, too much of which can be harmful for your growing baby.
Raw shellfish should be avoided because of the risk of food-poisoning, and oily fish and tuna should only be eaten in limited amounts. And should you come across shark on your restaurant menu, just say no!
If you have any doubts or worries about what you can or cannot eat, have a chat with your midwife or GP to put your mind at rest.