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Carrying an embryo inside and nurturing it until it turns to a fully developed baby is indeed an arduous task. They have to stick on to a perfect diet plan and should very well understand the specific food items that are to be avoided during the period of pregnancy.
Both the deficiency of and excess of certain types of food can affect the female body and the foetus during pregnancy. However, did you know that eating certain food items, especially in the first trimester of pregnancy, may cause a threat to your baby?
Miscarriage during an early stage of pregnancy (first trimester) is very common. Certain miscarriage-inducing food items can trigger it. Eating foods such as papaya or drinking pineapple juice can cause internal contractions and cervix dilation leading to a miscarriage .
The nutrition and diet habits of the mother play an important role during pregnancy because whatever the mother consumes reaches the baby in her womb. So, the healthier the mother eats during her pregnancy, the lesser chances of health complications.
Here is a list of foods that should be avoided by women during pregnancy, especially the first trimester.
Eating pineapple or drinking pineapple juice during the first trimester of your pregnancy can result in a stillbirth. Pineapple consists of bromelain, which can cause contractions in pregnant women, resulting in a miscarriage .
2. Animal Liver
Usually considered nutritious, consuming animal liver is not safe for pregnant women . Eating animal liver every day during your pregnancy can lead to a high build-up of retinol that can be harmful to your unborn baby . However, it is not unsafe to eat it once or twice in a month.
3. Aloe Vera
Aloe vera is excellent for the hair, skin and digestion. But, pregnant women should avoid consuming aloe vera juice, as it can lead to pelvic haemorrhage, causing a miscarriage . It is advisable to avoid using aloe vera products during the first trimester of pregnancy.
Papaya is one of the common miscarriage-inducing foods . Green or unripe papaya contains enzymes that can lead to uterine contractions, leading to a miscarriage. Therefore, pregnant women should avoid consuming green papaya, especially during early pregnancy.
Studies point out that green papaya or unripe papaya contains a myriad of enzymes and pus. As a result, the uterus will tend to develop a spasm. In this manner, abortion or miscarriage can take place.
Drumsticks, which are commonly used in sambhar, are full of vitamins, iron and potassium. But, this vegetable contains alpha-sitosterol, which is harmful to pregnant women. This oestrogen-like compound can lead to a miscarriage .
Besides its delicious taste, crab is also packed with high levels of calcium and nutrients. But, you should avoid eating them too much during the early stages of pregnancy, as they can cause the uterus to shrink, causing internal bleeding or even stillbirth . Besides, it also contains a high level of cholesterol, which is not good for a pregnant woman's overall health .
7. Unpasteurised Dairy Products
Unpasteurised dairy products such as milk, feta cheese, gorgonzola, brie, etc., contain bacteria named Listeria, which can be very harmful to women during the different stages of their pregnancy . This bacterium is also found in uncooked poultry and seafood. So, pregnant women should be extra cautious and avoid these food items during pregnancy .
8. Sprouted Potato
While eating regular potato during pregnancy is considered safe, sprouted potato can negatively affect the health of the mother and the foetus . Sprouted potato contains various toxins such as solanine that can be harmful to foetal growth. Sprouted potatoes are not only harmful for pregnant women but everyone.
9. Raw Eggs
Pregnant women should avoid raw eggs or foods with raw eggs, such as mayonnaise because these can increase the risk of food poisoning and salmonella. Make sure that the egg white and egg yolk are perfectly solid after cooking. Basically, pregnant women should avoid consuming any under-cooked food .
10. Sesame Seeds
Pregnant women should not overeat of sesame seeds during pregnancy. Sesame seeds, when mixed with honey, can lead to a miscarriage . However, black sesame seeds can be consumed during the last stages of pregnancy, as they help in a more natural delivery.
Although studies assert that consuming caffeine in moderation is safe during pregnancy, it is still advisable for pregnant women to limit the consumption, as increased levels of caffeine during pregnancy can lead to a miscarriage or an underweight baby .
12. Fish Rich In Mercury
Pregnant women in their first trimester should be careful while consuming fish. Avoid varieties with high mercury content like king mackerel, marlin, shark, swordfish, and tuna because high levels of mercury can adversely affect the baby's developing brain and nervous system . Some of the other foods pregnant women should avoid are as follows:
- Sprouts like alfalfa, mung beans radish etc. (may carry salmonella)
- Certain spices can adversely affect the baby's developing brain and nervous system (stimulates the uterus and may cause contraction)
- Unwashed and unpeeled vegetables
- Peaches (if consumed in large quantities, can produce excessive heat in the body and lead to internal bleeding)
- Certain herbs such as Centella and Dong Quai (may initiate a miscarriage or premature delivery)
On A Final Note…
While a lot depends on the health of a woman, age, food habits and health during pregnancy, these food items can be potentially harmful to a woman and her foetus during the first trimester. Always discuss your diet and food habits with your doctor during pregnancy.