Pregnancy Food Donts

H e a lt H y P r e g n a n c y
Food
Don'ts
Print-and-Go Guide
There are 3 main dangers lurking in the
food pregnant women eat. They are:
Listeria a dangerous bacterium that can
grow even in cold refrigerators.
Mercury a harmful metal found in high
levels in some fish.
Toxoplasma a risky parasite found in
undercooked meat and unwashed fruits
and vegetables.
These things can cause serious illness or
even death to you or your unborn baby.
Follow these food facts to help keep you and
your baby healthy:
DON’T eat raw or undercooked
meat, poultry, fish or shellfish (sushi
or sashimi).
DON’T eat swordfish, tilefish, king
mackerel, and shark.
DON’T eat refrigerated smoked
seafood like whitefish, salmon, and
mackerel. These are usually labeled nova-
style, lox, kippered, smoked, or jerky.
DON’T eat refrigerated pâtés or meat
spreads.
DON’T eat hot dogs and luncheon
meats unless they’re reheated until
steaming hot.
DON’T eat soft cheeses like feta, brie,
camembert, “blue-veined cheeses,”
“queso blanco,” “queso fresco,” and
Panela unless the label says they are
pasteurized or made from pasteurized
milk.
DON’T drink raw or unpasteurized
milk or juice or eat foods that contain
unpasteurized milk.
DON’T eat unwashed fruits and
vegetables.
DON’T eat raw sprouts of any kind
(including alfalfa, clover, radish, and
mung bean).
Source: U.S. Food and Drug Administration; Center
for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition
Content last updated March 5, 2009.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Womens Health
w o m e n s h e a l t h . g o v
womenshealth.gov
1-800-994-9662
TDD: 1-888-220-5446
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