Foods to Avoid During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is the most beautiful time for any woman. During this time, whatever you eat, you share it with the baby as well. That is why there are certain foods that might be fit for you but not recommended for your little one inside the womb. It is thus essential to know the foods to avoid during pregnancy to avoid any negative repercussions.

A pregnant woman needs to ensure that her body is healthy enough to accommodate the baby. In addition to that, the diet has to be nourishing for the baby as well. The calorie and nutritional requirements of a pregnant woman are more. With certain restrictions on foods to avoid when pregnant, the choices need to be wise. All this can get overwhelming without the right kind of information. Hence, given below are the foods to avoid while pregnant list that every pregnant woman should know.

List of foods to avoid during pregnancy

Raw Meat

Raw or undercooked meat causes potential infections and spread harmful bugs. These bugs can cause food poisoning and can harm your baby as well. Although the chances of getting a bacterial infection are rare, you definitely have to avoid all risks. It is advisable to have well-cooked meat that’s hot and does not have any sign of blood.

Moreover, washing your hands properly after handling the raw meat is a must. Furthermore, clean the utensils used in making the meat, properly washing away all signs of it. The idea is to not keep the baby in any contact with raw or undercooked meat.

Types of Cheese

Cheese variants that are soft and mold-ripened should not be a part of the diet. Blue veined cheese like gorgonzola and goat cheese can have a type of bacteria, making it the food to avoid while pregnant. It is harmful to the baby in the womb, and rare cases can lead to miscarriage. This bacterium is called listeria, and although chances of its occurrence are rare, prevention is always advisable.

However, the stiff cheese types like cheddar and cottage are safe to it. They have less water content. Thus, the bacteria are less likely to grow in them. So be careful about the cheese type you consume.

Undercooked food

Undercooked foods, no matter how properly they get washed, have high chances of parasite building. Especially seafood and some vegetables are potential sources of infections that can harm the baby. So, undercooked foods are something that you can’t eat when pregnant. You should prefer cooking the food properly, and consuming it hot; especially, if it is poultry or seafood.
The same thing applies to the ready-to-eat, packaged food that you get in the market. These are also foods to avoid when pregnant. If you have to eat them, read the ingredient list, wash properly, and cook as per instructions before eating.

Certain Fish types

Fish is a good source of essential nutrients. If you are a meat-eater, consuming fish is good to meet your nutritional requirements. Studies show that oily fish help builds the nervous system of the unborn baby and provides proper nutrition. However, the intake has to be calculative. Doctors suggest having only two servings of fish in a week.

While salmon and trout are good options and can have a place in the diet, tuna is included in the food to avoid while pregnant list. Tuna contains mercury which is harmful to the baby. Although it does no harm if taken in a smaller portion, the best way is to consider it as food to avoid during pregnancy.


It is something that one should stop consuming right from the time of planning pregnancy till breastfeeding. For those planning to get pregnant, it can come in the way of reducing ovulation efficiency. On the other hand, breastfeeding mothers can prove harmful to the baby.

There is no safe duration during the entire pregnancy when you can have alcohol. Furthermore, there is no safe limit as well. Hence, alcohol is a big no in all cases.


It is the biggest concern amongst pregnant women. The majority of women have a habit of consuming tea or coffee every day. But the higher levels of caffeine can lead to difficulty in childbirth, and in the worst case, can cause miscarriages. Not just tea or coffee, the majority of energy drinks and chocolates also contains caffeine which in higher quantity is a food to avoid during pregnancy.

The good news is that you don’t have to cut down on caffeine completely. There is a safe limit for everyday consumption. You should talk to your doctor about your daily caffeine intake and consume wisely.

Also Read: Why folic acid is crucial during pregnancy?


Papaya is one such fruit that almost everyone knows. Due to the rich latex content, papaya is a no-no for pregnant women. It can cause premature contractions and can harm the baby as well. Thus, this one tops the list of what can’t you eat when pregnant. Especially the papaya in raw and unripe form can prove extremely dangerous and should be avoided.

Another fruit that pregnant women should say no to is pineapple. The reason is that it can cause diarrhea leading to a lot of discomfort. Furthermore, it also contains latex which is not recommended for a healthy pregnancy.

If you are in the third and final trimester of your pregnancy, grapes are also the fruit you shouldn’t eat. Grapes increase body heat which is not a favorable condition for both mother and the baby. You can consult your doctor and limit the intake to be on the safer side.

Apart from the foods mentioned above, make sure you do not take any supplements without consulting your doctor. Moreover, every pregnancy is different, so you should also ask your doctor what can’t you eat when pregnant and get a proper diet chart made. What to eat and which foods to avoid while pregnant is a major part of pregnancy planning. Rather than believing in diets influenced by beliefs and traditions, follow what is best for your baby. Have a healthy pregnancy!

Written by Bhargavi J