Eating fish several times per week has long been advocated to be part of a healthy diet. Not all fish, however, are healthy when you’re pregnant. Some varieties of fish contain high levels of mercury which can be especially harmful to a growing fetus. The FDA guidelines for pregnant women are: No more than 12 ounces of low mercury fish should be consumed each week, and high mercury fish should be limited to three 6-ounce servings per month. Fish highest in mercury, and that should be avoided completely, include: marlin, orange roughy, tilefish, swordfish, bigeye and Ahi tuna, Mackerel and shark.
Unwashed Fruit & Produce
Washing fruit and produce before eating is always a good idea, but it is especially important while pregnant. Unwashed fruits and produce can contain bacteria which can cause listerosis. Salad bars, which use pre-washed and packaged spinach and lettuce should be avoided. Raw sprouts can also carry this bacteria. If you can’t wash it and you can’t cook it, then you shouldn’t eat it.
Eating a healthy and well-balanced diet is important while pregnant. If in doubt, ask your doctor to guide you on what you should and shouldn’t eat while pregnant.
One last tip: If pregnant, you should only consume about 300 more calories per day compared to before pregnancy. You don’t suddenly have a free pass to eat whatever and as much as you want. That is just a misconception.