6 Dangerous Foods When Eating Out During Pregnancy

There are a number of dangerous foods when eating out during pregnancy. We'll tell you what you should avoid in order to minimize the risks.
6 Dangerous Foods When Eating Out During Pregnancy

Last update: 08 February, 2022

During pregnancy, a series of dietary precautions must be taken in order to preserve the development of the fetus. Otherwise, you could experience alterations capable of culminating in miscarriage. To avoid this, we’re going to tell you which foods to avoid if you’re eating out during pregnancy.

Always keep in mind that going to a restaurant takes away your control over the methods of food selection and preparation. It’s normal for certain standards to be met and for regular quality controls to be carried out. However, sometimes all this may fail, so a good choice of menu will help to minimize risks.

Dangerous foods to avoid when eating out during pregnancy

Here are the most dangerous foods to eat outside the home during pregnancy. It’s best to avoid them at all costs, as they could lead to unpleasant consequences.

1. Fresh cheese

Some of the cheese you should avoid during pregnancy.

Dairy-type foodstuffs made from unpasteurized milk pose a high risk during pregnancy. They can contain the bacterium listeria monocytogenes, which causes a disease that’s really dangerous for the fetus. This is evidenced by research published in the journal Archives of Gynecology and Obstetrics.

However, this germ disappears when an appropriate sterilization method, such as pasteurization, is applied.

2. Raw sausages

Both chorizo and ham or salami can cause problems during pregnancy. This is due to the risk of transmitting the parasite that causes toxoplasmosis, a potentially severe infection for babies.

Some women have suffered from this disease at some point in their lives, so they’ve generated antibodies against the microorganism. However, when in doubt, it’s best to avoid consuming this type of food, unless your doctor tells you otherwise.

3. Raw fish

Raw fish is a prized food, but also quite dangerous. It’s become quite trendy in the Western world due to the influence of Asian culture. But the bad news is that it shouldn’t be consumed during pregnancy, as it carries a higher risk of food poisoning in pregnant women.

For this reason, if you want to incorporate seafood into your diet, you have to cook it very well before eating it.

4. Salads

Normally, fruits and vegetables don’t pose a risk to the health of pregnant women or the fetus. However, if vegetables aren’t washed properly, a number of microorganisms that can cause food poisoning may remain on the surface.

Although this is rare, it can pose significant risks during pregnancy. Therefore, they should be minimized with proper hygiene measures.

5. Mayonnaise

Sauces are also not recommended for consumption outside the home during pregnancy, at least those made with raw eggs as the main ingredient. For example, mayonnaise. This preparation can contain salmonella bacteria inside, which quickly infects the digestive tract.

To prevent this type of intoxication, it’s best to prepare mayonnaise with pasteurized egg. In any case, and as a precaution, it’s best to avoid consuming this preparation outside the home.

Homemade mayonnaise.

6. Large fish

Fish consumption is recommended during pregnancy, but large fish could become dangerous foods. This is because they accumulate mercury in their flesh, which is a heavy metal and very harmful for the fetus and for the mother.

Beware of dangerous foods when eating out during pregnancy

As you’ve seen, there are a number of foods that are dangerous during pregnancy, especially when dining away from home.

Although restaurants take a number of measures to minimize poisoning, it’s best to avoid eating those foods that are potentially harmful. Especially in the stages of life where health is more delicate.

Finally, take into account that there are several products that are restricted during the months of gestation. If you have any doubts about this, ask your specialist. This way, you’ll be able to optimize your diet and ensure the proper development of your unborn baby.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Madjunkov M, Chaudhry S, Ito S. Listeriosis during pregnancy. Arch Gynecol Obstet. 2017 Aug;296(2):143-152. doi: 10.1007/s00404-017-4401-1. Epub 2017 May 23. PMID: 28536811.
  • Paquet C, Yudin MH. No. 285-Toxoplasmosis in Pregnancy: Prevention, Screening, and Treatment. J Obstet Gynaecol Can. 2018 Aug;40(8):e687-e693. doi: 10.1016/j.jogc.2018.05.036. PMID: 30103893.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.