The outcome of a pregnancy depends significantly on the kind of lifestyle a would-be mommy follows. Eating a healthy, balanced diet is particularly important in this context. An expectant woman requires a nutrient-dense diet to sustain a healthy pregnancy. Fresh fruits, vegetables, whole cereals, lean meats and dairy products supply all that her body requires during these nine months. At the same time, she needs to be aware that certain foods can be detrimental to her own health as well as that of the baby.
Most women would be surprised to know that eating such foods could cause something as drastic as a miscarriage. Such foods have been scientifically linked with an elevated risk of pregnancy loss. It is really important to know all about these foods and make sure that these are not included in the pregnant woman’s diet. She can seek advice from her specialist to know all about them.
Here are some foods that should be avoided during pregnancy as these can induce miscarriage:
Surprisingly, eggs which are regarded as an excellent protein-source can harm a pregnancy if consumed in raw form. Even foods containing raw eggs, such as mayonnaise, soufflés and mousses should be avoided. The culprit is a bacterium called salmonella which lurks in uncooked eggs and can cause abdominal pain, fever, diarrhea, food poisoning, and even miscarriage. Conversely, cooked eggs are safe for consumption during pregnancy.
Another miscarriage-inducing food is milk in its unpasteurized form. Direct consumption of milk in its raw form exposes the expectant woman to potentially dangerous bacteria called listeria. Besides causing severe food poisoning, the bacteria are capable of crossing the placenta and causing damage to the fetus. Therefore, it is important to consume only pasteurized milk during pregnancy.
Canned seafood is also likely to be contaminated with listeria, the same bacteria which are found in unpasteurized milk. The risk of miscarriage can be reduced by avoiding the food item. Additionally, seafood high in mercury is absolutely prohibited for pregnant women. Such foods can cause an array of complications including fetal brain damage and developmental delays. These include crab, swordfish, shark, tilefish, and king mackerel.
Gynaecologists recommend avoiding papaya, particularly raw papaya, during pregnancy as it is associated with increased risk of miscarriage. The fruit contains an enzyme, which can lead to uterine contractions and result in miscarriage.
Pineapple is another fruit to be ditched by mommies-to-be during the first trimester of pregnancy. Pineapple juice should be avoided too. The fruit is high in bromelain, which soften the uterine muscles and induce early labor. Having the fruit or its juice during early pregnancy is therefore, regarded dangerous. On the other hand, pineapple juice is used to ease up labor and have faster contractions at the time of delivery.
Sprouted potato is a toxic food which is dangerous for everyone, let alone pregnant women. The green sprout is high in solanin, a toxin which is detrimental for fetal growth. It can subsequently cause miscarriage too. A pregnant woman should be careful about eating potatoes and discard the sprouted one.
Animal liver is regarded as a high-nutrient food source but may be contaminated with toxins if it comes from an infected animal. Another reason to avoid liver during pregnancy is that it is high in cholesterol and vitamin A. Excess of vitamin A can influence fetal development and cause complications such a spina bifida, urinary tract malformations, and hydrocephalus. It can also be responsible for inducing miscarriage.
Drumstick leaves are high in calcium, vitamin C, potassium and iron. Yet, they are regarded as a dangerous food for pregnant women as the tree contains a substance called alpha-sitosterol. It has an action similar to the female hormone estrogen and can cause smoothening of the uterine muscles. As a result, it puts a woman at the risk of miscarriage.
Though aloe vera has been revered for its medicinal value, it is to be avoided during pregnancy. Aloe Vera as well as its products (such as gel and juice) should not be taken during the first three months of pregnancy. The reason is that it can cause pelvic hemorrhage and miscarriage.
Another food that may cause miscarriage is peach as it heightens the risk of bleeding. The shell hair of this sweet fruit is particularly dangerous. It generally causes a burning and itching sensation in the throat but can also have dangerous consequences such as miscarriage.
Though these food items may not have the same effect on all pregnant women, yet it is better to avoid them to reduce the risk of miscarriage. Pregnancy is the time when extra care and precaution can make all the difference. Therefore, a pregnant woman should look for constant guidance from her doctor to know all she can do to have a safe pregnancy.
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