While pregnant, there are certain foods you’ll have to reduce the intake and others you may have to stop eating completely. Pregnancy is a delicate journey, and you’ll need to be careful with what you feed yourself, keeping in mind your unborn baby responds to whatever you eat.

Diets play an important role in the lifestyle of a pregnant woman. It largely affects your health, and the wellness of the mini-you inside your belly. The first step after knowing you’re pregnant is getting to know what you should avoid. Afterwards you’ll be required to change your lifestyle, especially your eating habits. So, what should you avoid eating during pregnancy?

Which food should you not eat during pregnancy?

Raw eggs

Proteins are usually ideal meals for pregnant women. Even so, foods containing raw eggs should be avoided. They’re contaminated with a bacteria; salmonella, which may interrupt the uterus and cause premature or stillbirth. Such foods include eggs that is not well scrambled, poached eggs, homemade mayonnaise, some ice cream, cake icings, salad dressings, and hollandaise sauce.To be safe, always read the labels of commercial products and avoid those prepared with raw eggs. Opt for pasteurized eggs, or make yours at home,and ensure it is well cooked.

Not well cooked meat
Consuming undercooked meat exposes you to lots of bacteria and parasites which maybe a threat to your little person. It can result to stillbirth, neurological diseases, intellectual issues, blindness or even epilepsy. Would you risk making your child suffer from all these conditions because of undercooked meat?Ofcourse one can’t risk.

Undercooked or raw seafood

Sushi lovers will get depressed after knowing undercooked oysters, mussels, and clams are must-to-avoid foodsif you’re an expectant. They contain bacteria that may harm your unborn child.

Processed junk foods

Expectant mothers like using the ‘eating for two’ excuse to make a poor diet decision. It’s understandable that pregnancy comes with cravings of junk food. Even so, don’t always listen to your unborn baby’s demands at all times. It’s better to make the baby sad by eating nutritious food, and maintain its good health rather than providing what it wants and have regrets later. Junk foods are loaded with many calories, sugars, and fats which will damage the health of your baby. So, avoid them and opt for better foods like fresh fruits, or healthy snacks.

Soft cheese

Some cheese is safe to eat while soft versions like feta, brie, camembert, andgorgonzola should be avoided. Avoid Mexican cheese, unless they’re manufactured from pasteurized milk.

Foods with high levels of mercury

Fish like shark, tilefish, swordfish, king mackerel, and others with high amounts of mercury should be avoided. If you’re obsessed with fish, you may opt for options with lower content of mercury such as tuna. However, you’ll still have to consume them moderately.

Which drinks should you avoid while pregnant?

Other than foods, there are certain drinks that you should be watchful for if you want a healthy baby. Avoid the following;


If you’re a coffee, soft drinks, tea, or cocoa addict, it’s time to make a sacrifice for the sake of your baby. Caffeine needs an active metabolism to remain stable in the body. Unfortunately,it is quickly absorbed in the placenta, where the needed enzyme to maintain the amounts of caffeine is absent. As a result, fetal growth will be limited, and may cause low weight of birth. It also increases the risks of chronic diseases in the child’s adulthood life. Be keen with the amount of sodas, and other caffeine drinks you consume.

Unpasteurized milk andjuice

Unpasteurized juice and milk contain bacteria that are harmful for the fetus. Consuming such drinks will result inconsequences that are life threatening to the baby. To avoid the risks,resolve to drink pasteurized fruit juice, and milk.


Alcohol is associated with cases of miscarriage and stillbirth. Don’t be tempted tocompromise with little amount because even small intake will have negative effects on the development of the baby’s brain. More to that, it may lead to facial misshaping, heart illnesses, and intellectual problems.

Which foods should you eat more when you’re pregnant?

While pregnant, you’ll need a snack that will make your baby happy. An expectant woman will need high amounts of proteins, fiber and fluids, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals, and complex carbohydrates. The recommended nutritious foods that will maintain a healthy pregnancy include;

  • Legumes like peas, beans, chickpeas, peanuts, soybeans. They provide enough fiber, protein, calcium, folate, and iron which are important for the pregnancy; the first trimester in particular.
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Dairy products
  • Salmon
  • Dark leafy greens and broccoli
  • Proteins and lean meat
  • Berries
  • Whole grain
  • Fish olive oil
  • Avocados

How do you know you’ve eaten the wrong food?

For new mothers, it may be not an easy path to identify the right foods that will have no harmful effects to you or the pregnancy. Therefore, it’s upon you to be keen with how your body reacts with different foods. The doctors can only generalize the foods to avoid, but keep in mind pregnancy responds differently. What may have not affected you in the previous pregnancy can badly affect you at the second one. So, be careful to look for symptoms like itchy skin, eyes, or mouth, runny nose, headache, extreme sneezing,and congestion. Once you notice an allergic reaction, stop eating that food as soon as possible.

What should you do if youeat foods or drinks that you should avoid?

It’s expected that an expectant mother will be scared to find out she haseaten something that may threaten the baby’s life. Even so, don’t panic. If you realize you have consumed something unhealthy for the pregnancy, seek medical help immediately. The doctors will know how to handle the situation and save your baby from danger. You may be surprised the situation may not be as bad as you think.


Being pregnant is a journey like no other. It has no formula, and you have to learn it through experience. When pregnant, what you eat plays a critical role. Ensure your diet provides the baby with essential nutrients like fiber, iron, and folate.Besides diet, ensure you stay physically active, mentally strong, and remain calm regardless of the anxieties. All the best mother-to-be!

Nataly Komova

Nutritionist. Bluffton University, MS In today's world, people's eating and exercise patterns have changed, and it is often lifestyle that is the cause of many diet-related illnesses. I believe that each of us is unique – what works for one does not help another. What is more, it can even be harmful. I am interested in food psychology, which studies a person's relationship with their body and food, explains our choices and desires for specific products, the difficulty of maintaining optimal body weight, as well as the influence of various internal and external factors on appetite. I'm also an avid vintage car collector, and currently, I'm working on my 1993 W124 Mercedes. You may have stumbled upon articles I have been featured in, for example, in Cosmopolitan, Elle, Grazia, Women's Health, The Guardian, and others.