Forbidden foods during pregnancy


Taking care of food is essential to enjoy good health throughout life, but there is a specific stage that becomes essential. This stage is about pregnancy, since it requires making modifications and new adjustments in the lifestyle so that the pregnancy is carried out without setbacks for the child and for the mother herself. One of these changes is diet. There are certain foods that acquire the category of “prohibited” during pregnancy due to the high probability of containing harmful microorganisms, crossing the placental barrier and potentially seriously affecting the health of the baby.

Forbidden foods during pregnancy

If you are wondering what a pregnant woman cannot eat, this post is for you. 

Unpasteurized dairy

Unpasteurized dairy can contain the Listeria bacteria, which is commonly found in raw protein foods that are not heated. This bacteria can cause miscarriage, infection or death of the baby or premature delivery. Unpasteurized dairy products include those derived from milk, such as: creams, yogurts, soft or ice cream cheeses and frozen yogurts .

Raw milk

Raw milk could provide very dangerous bacteria for the newborn such as Listeria, salmonella, Campylobacter and E.coli . This type of milk corresponds to that obtained from goats, cows and sheep (among other animals) without having been pasteurized. It is not enough to boil raw milk: to ensure its safe consumption, the only way is to buy pasteurized milk .

Blue cheese or Roquefort

Blue cheese or Roquefort presents a high risk of being contaminated by some bacteria. It is within the group of white cheeses with stretch marks , being unsafe to consume during pregnancy. Therefore, they fall within the group of foods prohibited for pregnant women.

Unpasteurized soft cheeses

As with unpasteurized dairy, you should be very careful during pregnancy with some types of cheese. Soft cheeses, such as: feta, brie, fresh cheese, white cheese or panela have a higher risk of listeriosis . If you want to eat soft cheeses, they must bear the seal of manufacture with pasteurized milk.

Smoked or raw fish

Smoked salmon in pregnancy, as well as other foods made with smoked or raw shellfish and fish, are prohibited because they are more likely to contain bacteria or parasites than cooked fish. In addition to smoked salmon, some preparations with smoked or raw fish to avoid are: ceviche, tartar, carpaccio and sushi .

Red tuna

Eating fish during the months of pregnancy is positive because of its high content of nutrients and proteins such as omega-3 and 6. Even so, some types of fish should be avoided because they contain high levels of mercury. Among them are bluefin tuna, swordfish, shark, pike and mackerel.

Raw seafood

The risk of anisakis forces pregnant women to avoid eating undercooked or raw shellfish at all costs, such as: prawns, shrimp, clams, oysters, mussels and oysters . Similarly, they should not eat shrimp heads because of their high cadmium content, that is, a metal that can cause kidney dysfunction.

Uncured ham

Pregnant women can consume ham as long as it is cured for more than 18 months to avoid toxoplasmosis. In the case of Iberian ham, it must be cured for 24 months . Therefore, as you can see, you must follow a diet during pregnancy to eat the right foods.

Undercooked or raw meats

Wondering what else a pregnant woman can't eat? Well, meat that is not well cooked can contain toxoplasmosis , that is, a parasite that is found in the raw meat of some animals and in the excrement of infected cats. Toxoplasmosis can cause serious damage in pregnancy, such as: low birth weight of the baby, premature birth, jaundice, fever, delayed mental development, retinal irregularities, abnormal skull size, seizures and calcifications in the formation of the brain. brain. Therefore, undercooked or raw meats fall within the group of foods prohibited in pregnancy.

Raw eggs

The risk of salmonellosis is reason enough to avoid eating raw eggs during pregnancy, as it can cause bacteremia, dehydration, meningitis, Reiter's syndrome, and reactive arthritis. Both the raw egg and those foods that contain it in its preparation and are not cooked afterwards, are prohibited during pregnancy.


Sausages can be contaminated by listeria during their preparation , so they require maximum precaution for consumption during pregnancy. They include salami, chorizo, mortadella, salami and fuet, among others. To eat them safely, they must be verified as having gone through a reheating process .

Unwashed vegetables

Vegetables are a fundamental part of a healthy diet for pregnant women, but as long as they are handled correctly. This implies a good washing to avoid contamination of toxoplasmosis , since it could be present in the soils of the vegetable crops. These are some of the forbidden foods during pregnancy.

Foie gras and pâté

Consumption of chilled meat spreads and pâtés during pregnancy is not recommended because they present a high risk of listeriosis . Before eating them, their pasteurization should be verified. Also, you should avoid home-made pâtés and foie gras because the risk of listeriosis is even higher. Pâtés are included in the list of prohibited foods during the first trimester of pregnancy, it also applies to all the remaining months.

Packaged sandwiches

The AECOSAN (1) recommends that pregnant women avoid the consumption of packaged sandwiches and other prepared foods that contain eggs, vegetables, cold cuts, meat, fish and derivatives.

Germinated raw sprouts

The raw germinated sprouts are beneficial for health, but their consumption should be avoided during pregnancy because they are prone to being contaminated by bacteria , such as Salmonella or E. Colli. Within the group of raw germinated sprouts are radish, alfalfa, clover or soybeans . We point out that soy sauce during pregnancy should not be consumed.


Excessive coffee consumption is also prohibited during pregnancy, as excess caffeine is associated with a higher risk of miscarriage . The recommended daily amount of caffeine for pregnant women is less than 200 milligrams (two small cups or one large).


Although it is not considered a food, it should be noted that alcohol is completely prohibited during pregnancy, since the drink ingested by the mother reaches the baby. In the case of alcohol, it is one of the frequent non-genetic causes of mental retardation in the newborn .

Brown algae

Brown algae such as kombu, laminaria or Macrocystis should not be consumed during pregnancy due to their potential action on thyroid function in the pregnant woman herself. For its part, green algae can only be consumed in small quantities despite its high nutritional benefits.

What do you think of this list of prohibited foods during pregnancy? Leave us your opinion in the comments. And, on the contrary, if you want to know what are the best foods for pregnancy , do not miss this article that we offer you below. You can also check this article on How to take care of yourself during pregnancy. Taking care of your health is essential!


Leave a Reply