Dietary Restrictions

There are very few things that you should not eat or drink during pregnancy. Caffeine, lunch meats, cheese, fish, and sushi are all safe in moderation.

There is currently no evidence that caffeine consumption in pregnancy is dangerous. The recent studies that claimed to link caffeine to complications during pregnancy did not account for several variables and when re-examined do not have sufficient evidence to link caffeine to pregnancy complications. Having a cup or two of coffee in the morning and some soda during the day is safe while pregnant. If you drank caffeine prior to becoming pregnant and you stop it suddenly you will likely get bad headaches. There is no reason to do this.

I do not recommend eating non-pasteurized cheese weather you are pregnant or not. Pasteurized cheese (what we typically find in the grocery store) is safe in pregnancy.

Some people worry about a connection to deli meats and a condition called chorioamnionitis. Chorioamnionitis is an infection in the uterus and it can cause you to lose your baby. Fortunately this is extremely rare. It is thought to occur from bacteria in the vagina traveling into the uterus. Deli meats may contain this same bacteria but it would be highly unlikely to get an infection in the uterus from oral ingestion of deli meats. I tell my patients that deli meats are safe to eat.

Fish can contain mercury that some people believe can effect the baby’s brain development. Even if this is true, three servings of fish is considered to be completely safe for your baby. It doesn’t matter if this fish is cooked or raw so sushi is safe. Fish also contains fats that promote brain development, some people even recommend taking fish oil supplements during pregnancy to help the baby’s brain develop.

You should not drink any alcohol, smoke, or use drugs during pregnancy. Apart from that, you can pretty much live your normal life and you and the baby should be fine.