Pregnant Ladies Guide To Eating Festive Foods At Christmas

There are so many festive foods you can enjoy when pregnant – but there are a few that it’s best to avoid.

As a mummy-to-be, you’re more vulnerable to food poisoning due to changes in your immune system, and the consequences can be long-term. So, when you’re at a party and aren’t sure how food has been prepared, there’s no harm in asking. Alternatively, just play it safe and avoid it.
Do be aware that the risk is small, so you don’t need to panic if you eat something accidentally.

Eating healthily at Christmas can be a real chore but remember baby needs you to have lots of fruit and vegetables and try to eat well.
BUT – when it comes to New Year, forget any diets or detoxes if you’re pregnant. Be sensible but make sure you enjoy the festive treats and chocolate on offer!

Seafood, Cold Meats & Cheese…

  • You can eat: Sushi; As long as the fish was frozen first (the raw variety may contain tiny worms that are killed by freezing). Ready-made sushi should be fine as regulations mean that the fish must be frozen first. A restaurant making sushi may use fresh fish, so ask before you order. Smoked salmon is safe too. However, if it’s been on a buffet table for a while, the risk of listeria increases. You should avoid Shellfish, including oysters, prawns and mussels – as they can cause food poisoning, unless served piping hot.

  • You can eat: Leftover turkey, as long as it’s been stored well in the fridge. Make sure you use it within 2 days of cooking it. You should avoid : Parma ham and salami. These are cured but not cooked and can cause toxoplasmosis, which can adversely affect your baby’s development.

  • You can eat : Hard cheeses, such as Cheddar and pasteurised soft cheeses like Boursin. You should avoid: Soft mould-ripened cheeses, such as Brie or Camembert, and blue cheeses like Stilton. These can contain listeria unless they’re cooked thoroughly and eaten hot.

Salads & Puddings…

  • You can eat: Christmas cake – although if it’s homemade, check that the icing doesn’t contain raw egg. You can also have mince pies, cake, trifle and most shop-bought ice-cream – as long as it’s been made using pasteurised eggs. You should avoid:- Puddings containing raw or partly cooked eggs, such as homemade mousse, cheesecake and meringues, as these can contain salmonella.

  • You can eat: Leafy green salads, but only if you make sure they’re thoroughly washed first. You should avoid: Coleslaw as it can contain listeria. Also, keep clear of salads made with homemade mayonnaise, as the raw eggs may contain salmonella. Mayonnaise from a jar is a good, safe alternative.