What foods are prohibited during pregnancy?

Foods prohibited during pregnancy

You are pregnant or planning to become pregnant and already, injunctions under the guise of “good advice” are flooding your brain. Foods to avoid, forbidden, calories, know that pregnancy often rhymes with preconceived ideas.

Our health coach Laila Bel helps you sort out fact from fiction. Spoiler: yes, you are entitled to coffee, no, you don't need to "eat for two".

Pregnancy and diet

I need to increase my protein intake: TRUE

At the end of pregnancy, protein needs increase by 20 to 30%. You can increase your animal-based proteins. Choose them of good quality (labeled organic, from small producers, free-range farms, etc.). There are also many plant proteins: lentils, beans, chickpeas, etc.

I must no longer eat fish or seafood: TRUE AND FALSE

Shellfish, mussels and oysters should be avoided if you are not sure of their freshness. Avoid consuming large fish contaminated with heavy metals (swordfish, merlin, tuna, sea bream, monkfish, sea bass and lamprey).

Favor small fish rich in omega-3 (sardines, herring, anchovies, trout, mackerel) as well as wild salmon by diversifying the places of supply.

I need to stop drinking tea or coffee: FALSE

You can have a cup of coffee per day or 2 cups of tea, but it is advisable not to exceed 200mg of caffeine per day. If you can, opt for organic coffee and tea.

I should avoid unpasteurized foods: TRUE AND FALSE

We know the risks of certain dairy products made from raw (unpasteurized) milk, such as raw milk cheeses or raw crème fraîche. But unpasteurized juices and vinegars can also contain unwanted parasites or bacteria. On the other hand, unpasteurized lacto-fermented vegetables can be consumed safely during pregnancy. Indeed, the good bacteria that develop during fermentation produce lactic acid which will acidify the environment to a pH level so low that pathogenic bacteria cannot develop.

I should avoid spicy foods: TRUE AND FALSE

Spicy foods are safe to eat during pregnancy and do not cause labor to be induced. However, if you suffer from heartburn after eating spicy foods or are prone to hemorrhoids, it is best to refrain from it during your pregnancy.

The special case of meat for vegetarians

I need to adapt my vegetarian diet: TRUE

Be sure to combine plant proteins (legumes and oilseeds) with whole grains (examples: rice and lentils, almond puree and whole grain bread, etc.) and to limit soy-based products (tofu, tempeh, soy milk ...) once a day.

If you do not consume any products of animal origin, check with your doctor that you are not deficient in vitamins B12, calcium, iron, zinc, choline, DHA and vitamin D in particular .

Pregnancy and calories

I have to eat for two: FALSE

You only need about 200 to 300 extra calories per day starting in the second trimester and a little more in the last trimester. This is equivalent to a handful of almonds with fruit or yogurt with 4 tablespoons of granola.

Laila Bel is a health coach for mothers. Find his good advice on his website .

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