15 Foods and Beverages to Avoid During Pregnancy 

High mercury fish 

Mercury is highly toxic element and can occur in polluted waters. 

Undercooked or raw fish 

Raw fish, especially shellfish, can include norovirus, Vibrio, Salmonella, and Listeria. 

Undercooked or raw meat 

Undercooked or uncooked meat can potentially spread Toxoplasma, E. coli, Listeria, and Salmonella. 

Processed and deli meat 

During preparation or storage, hot dogs, lunch meat, pepperoni, and deli meat can also get germs. Not-cooked cured meats may include bacteria or parasites. 

Raw eggs 

Raw eggs can contain Salmonella bacteria. 

Organ meat 

Organ meats provide iron, vitamin B12, vitamin A, zinc, selenium, and copper, which are excellent for you and baby. 

Raw sprouts 

Raw sprouts, including alfalfa, clover, radish, and mung bean sprouts, are popular in salads. 

Unwashed fruits and vegetables 

Unwashed or unpeeled produce may contain Toxoplasma, E. coli, Salmonella, and Listeria. They can arise from soil or handling. 

Unpasteurized dairy products 

Raw milk and other unpasteurized dairy products can include Listeria, Salmonella, E. coli, and Campylobacter. Many food poisoning infections can result from these germs. 

Soft cheeses 

Some soft cheeses contain listeria, a type of bacteria that can cause severe illness and pregnancy loss.

Processed foods 

Highly processed foods tend to be low in nutrients and high in calories, sugar, and added fats, and they may increase the risk of weight gain. 

Some fruit juices and smoothies 

Fruit juices can be beneficial during pregnancy, but opt for juices that are pasteurized and have no added sugar. 


Alcohol during pregnancy increases the chance of stillbirth, fetal alcohol syndrome, and loss. FAS can impact heart and brain development. 


Coffee, tea, soft drinks, and cocoa all contain caffeine. 

Contaminated drinking water 

It’s essential to drink plenty of water during pregnancy to avoid dehydration. 

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