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Foods to Avoid During the First Trimester of Pregnancy

Sep 23, 2022

Avoid Seafood High in Mercury

Seafood is high in omega-3 fatty acids, and these foods help to promote the proper development of the baby's brain. But some fishes have a mercury content at a high level that is extremely dangerous. Consuming more mercury-containing foods may harm the growth of the nervous system of your baby. You may avoid shellfish and raw fish foods like sushi, sashimi, and raw oysters. 

During early pregnancy, avoid these fishes are recommended:

  • Tuna
  • King mackerel
  • Marlin
  • Swordfish
  • Shark
  • Orange roughy‌
  • Tilefish

Avoid Undercooked Foods

You must be cautious with the food you eat during pregnancy because the risk of bacterial food poisoning is high. Whatever you ingest affects your baby too.

Ensure to eat well-cooked food because undercooked foods may be sources of dangerous infections called listeria infections. Limit consuming refrigerated or canned drinks. Avoid eating raw eggs during the first trimester, as they can easily contaminate with bacteria that may harm your health.

Avoid Unpasteurized Dairy Products

Ensure using pasteurized dairy products because sterilizing may keep the food germ free and increase its shelf life. Low-fat dairy products may be a healthy diet, though the products from unpasteurized milk like skim milk and cheese may cause foodborne illness. Also, avoid unpasteurized drinking juices. Consuming unpasteurized dairy products affect your baby and may even lead to a miscarriage.

You may avoid having unpasteurized cheeses like:‌

  1. Blue cheese
  2. Brie
  3. Feta
  4. Camembert 

Avoid Excess Caffeine

Sometimes, sipping a moderate amount of coffee is allowed while pregnant. Having more caffeine may affect the baby's development and increases the risk of miscarriage during the first trimester. Ensure to check the labels of sodas, energy drinks, or chocolate, as they may contain caffeine. 

Avoid Alcohol

Stay away from alcohol throughout your pregnancy and breastfeeding. Alcohol consumption may impact the growth of your baby. It leads to the risk of miscarriage and results in fetal alcohol syndrome causing facial deformities and intellectual disability.

Avoid Excess Vitamin A

During the first trimester, skip the intake of vitamin A supplements and liver products as they may contain high levels of vitamin A. If having an excessive dose of vitamin A may turn toxic to the baby and cause a congenital disorder. The reason is the baby's liver has still not developed by this stage of pregnancy and so may not process vitamin A more. 

Ensure to limit drinking herbal teas and avoid eating nuts if you are particularly allergic to any too.

Avoid Eating Fruits

Fruits can provide plenty of vitamins and minerals that are healthy and highly beneficial for the baby in the womb. However, some fruits may cause harm when you take them in the early weeks.

Here is the list of fruits not to eat in the first trimester of pregnancy-


Pineapples rank top among the fruits to avoid during the first trimester as it leads to sharp uterine contractions that cause miscarriage. Pineapple contains bromelain, a proteolytic enzyme that softens the cervix and may result in early labor. 


Papaya has loads of vitamins that are essential for your body. But this fruit is not advisable for pregnant women in the first trimester as it may raise body temperature. This fruit contains latex which may cause uterine contractions that affect the fetus's development and leads to miscarriage. 


Usually, grapes are healthy fruit for a pregnant woman. But still, it has some unwanted effects because grapes contain a toxic element called resveratrol that cause poisoning to you and your fetus. 

Make sure to wash cleanly before eating the fruits. Every fruit may contain pesticide residue on its skin that are unhealthy during pregnancy. In addition, most fruits contain more sugar levels that increase the risk of pregnancy and diabetes. Hence avoid fruit juices and eat a small amount of fruit daily.

These things are to avoid during pregnancy that may cause miscarriage or other complications in the first trimester. If you have any questions, consult your doctor for the best advice to stay healthy and help your baby's growth. 


Related: What Happens in the First Trimester of Pregnancy?

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