Foods to Avoid During Pregnancy

While most foods are safe for you and your growing baby, you’ve likely heard about some foods and beverages that are off limits during your pregnancy – certain kinds of fish, alcohol and drinks loaded with caffeine, for example. These are just some of the foods that you should be careful to avoid.

According to the U.S Department of Health and Human Services’ Office on Women’s Health, you should avoid the following foods during pregnancy:

  • Fish that have high levels of mercury: Swordfish, shark, king mackerel and tilefish (also known as golden or white snapper)
  • Refrigerated smoked seafood, including salmon, whitefish and mackerel
  • Undercooked, raw or contaminated seafood
  • Refrigerated meat spreads
  • Undercooked meat, eggs and poultry
  • Deli meats and hot dogs, unless they’re “steaming hot”
  • Grocery store-made salads, including egg, chicken and tuna salad
  • Unpasteurized soft cheeses, including unpasteurized Brie, feta, blue cheeses, queso blanco and queso fresco
  • Any kind of raw sprouts, including alfalfa, radish, clover and mung bean
  • Unpasteurized juices or milk
  • Alcohol
  • Excessive caffeine
  • More than six ounces per week of albacore (white) tuna
  • Plants and herbs used as medicines – unless approved by your doctor

Talk with your doctor for more information about foods you should avoid during your pregnancy and what foods are safe for you and your baby.