We've looked at the facts and we're about to bust some myths about food and pregnancy
- You do not eat for two. In fact you don't actually require any extra calories until the second trimester. The extra calories are only in or around three hundred extra calories per day. We're talking an extra slice of bread here, not an extra couple of meals. No fair!
- “It is impossible to get enough Iron through diet during pregnancy if you do not eat meat.” Incorrect! This is a myth. It is a little bit more difficult to get the required Iron levels when not eating meat, but absolutely possible. Certain cereals and cooked Spinach are ways that Iron can be included in the diet of a pregnant woman who is not eating meat.
- Caffeine is not to be avoided completely. It is correct to say that caffeine intake should be monitored so as not to consume more than the recommended amount (200mg per day) but having a cup of coffee or two-three cups of tea per day is more than OK.
- Pregnant women can have soft cheese. It is true that certain soft cheese pose the risk of Listeria but that is only when the cheeses are unpasteurised. Most soft cheeses in UK and Ireland are pasteurised and therefore safe to eat in moderation during pregnancy.
- The foods you crave during pregnancy are likely to be foods that your child will enjoy? True Or False! This one is mostly false. There is a small possibility that the food you eat may affect your child's taste due to the way in which food changes the consistency and make-up of the amniotic fluid but food preferences and tastes are likely to be established and formed after the baby is born.
- You CAN eat sushi. Many forms of sushi are perfectly safe to eat during pregnancy. Tuna, for example, is a fish that comes with a warning to not over-consume.
- It is possible to crave foods during pregnancy that you dislike at all other times. Scientists are unsure as to why but thousands of women crave foods that they would have otherwise avoided. It may be due to the way pregnancy hormones affect our sense of taste and smell and therefore we experience food differently.
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