10 Things to Avoid During Pregnancy

The Gainesville maternity team at All About Women suggest staying away from these foods and bad habits throughout your term

The excitement of becoming a mom for the first time can be an amazing experience. During these nine months of anxious anticipation while your precious bundle is developing, it is vital you take care of yourself. This may mean changing some bad habits or avoiding certain pleasures due to the health of your little one.

Keep reading below to see what things maternity care providers recommend pregnant women stay away from for the wellbeing of themselves and their baby.

  • Extreme heat– Drink plenty of water in warm conditions to keep you and your baby hydrated. This is not the time to frequent saunas or hot tubs that can raise your body temperature too high and harm the baby.

  • Stress– Stress is a part of everyday life, but the more anxiety you can avoid the better you and your baby will be.

  • Don't skip prenatal visits– Make doctors' visits a priority during this time. Avoiding them may mean that you miss something very important regarding the health of your developing baby.

  • Don't forget to take your prenatal vitamin– These vitamins help reduce your baby's risk for spina bifida. They also contain nutrients that help make up for any diet deficiencies.

  • Eating unhealthy– Remember that each morsel and drop you put in your body also goes to your little one. As WebMD states, "Good nutrition during pregnancy, and enough of it, is very important for your baby to grow and develop. You should consume about 300 more calories per day than you did before you became pregnant." This does not mean 300 calories extra of pure junk food though! For other nutritional tips on what to eat (and not to eat) while pregnant, read this article.

  • Over exercising– Maintaining a regular workout program during your pregnancy is excellent for you and the baby. Regular exercise can help with your posture as well as fatigue. However, certain types of high impact physical activity may not be recommended. Speak to your physician first to make certain that the exercise plan you choose is appropriate.
  • Drugs, alcohol and cigarettes– All three of these bad habits have proven to cause birth defects, developmental impairment and health issues for baby and mom. Even partaking in alcohol just once can have dire consequences.

  • Raw meat and unpasteurized cheeses– Certain uncooked meat and cheeses can be detrimental to your immune system as well as contain harmful chemicals. If you consume deli meat, heat it to 145 degrees before you eat it.

  • Exposure to toxins– Secondhand smoke is toxic to you and your baby. Avoid being around it if at all possible. Other toxins to avoid include paint fumes, pesticides, herbicides, fungicides and harmful household cleaners.

  • X-Rays– There is a small risk that x-rays may harm the health of your baby, so if it must be done consult your doctor or dentist about using low radiation exposure. Waiting to have the x-ray done after the baby is born is best.

  • Electric blankets– Electric blankets give off a low level electromagnetic field that could possibly harm a developing baby. It is best to use extra blankets instead of an electric one during these nine months.

  • Fish high in mercury– Avoid eating shark, king mackerel, tilefish, and swordfish. All raw fish should be avoided during pregnancy. You can eat 2-3 servings per week of fish that is higher in DHA, such as salmon, trout, herring, sardines, and Atlantic mackerel. Eat only 6 oz. servings of albacore tuna.

Sacrificing some things for a short period of time can mean a great deal to the long-term health of you and your baby. If you live in the Gainesville, Lake City or elsewhere in North Florida, contact All About Women to talk to our knowledgeable and compassionate maternity team or schedule a prenatal checkup.

To learn more about pregnancy and your health, browse our knowledge center and blog.