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1. Raw Meats: Raw meats such as sushi, seafood (especially shellfish), rare or uncooked beef or poultry foods should be avoided during pregnancy due to the risk of coliform bacteria, toxoplasmosis and salmonella.

2. Deli meats including hot dogs: These deli meats might be contaminated with listeria bacteria which may result in miscarriage. It's safe to eat deli meats if you reheat them until steaming hot or avoid altogether.

3. Raw eggs: Raw eggs may contain salmonella. Some Caesar salad dressings, mayonnaise, homemade ice cream and custards as well as Hollandaise sauces may be made with raw eggs. In addition, unpasteurized eggnog should be avoided during pregnancy. Definitely one of the top foods to avoid during pregnancy.

4. Fish high in mercury: Another important food you can't eat when pregnant. In many places in the U.S. there are high levels of Mercury or polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in the fish. When you consume large amounts of mercury, your baby may suffer brain damage resulting in developmental delays (for example, delays in learning to walk or talk). Consumption of fish containing high levels of PCBs in their fatty tissues is linked to decreased attention, memory, and IQ in babies. Check with your local Health Department to determine which fish in your area are safe to eat

5. Soft cheeses: Soft cheeses such as blue cheese, feta (goat cheese), brie, cambert, Latin-American soft white cheeses (such as queso blanco and queso fresco) and blue-veined cheeses (such as roquefort) may become contaminated with the Listeria bacteria. Listeria could cause sickness or death in you or in your child.

6. Over the counter food: Avoid canned, tinned or prepackaged foods. Many of them can have Salmonella or other bacteria. Even hotdogs and burgers bought from vendors can cause diseases.

7. Liver: Minimize the amount of liver you eat. Animal liver contains very high levels of vitamin A. While vitamin A is good for you, women who consume too much may risk a higher incidence of birth defects in their babies. Since you're probably already taking prenatal vitamins and eating other vitamin A-containing foods, it's better to be safe and not consume liver on a regular basis.

8. Artificial sweeteners: No-no food you can't eat when pregnant.The

consumption of artificial sweeteners, such as can be found in diet soda, is safe for the general public. No studies show conclusively that it's harmful for humans to consume artificial sweeteners during pregnancy. The risk seems to be lowest with aspartame, while Saccharin has been shown to cause birth defects and

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cancer in rodent studies. you might choose to limit your consumption of artificial sweeteners during pregnancy. Instead, substitute fruit juice, milk or water.

Avoid papayas during pregnancy

9. Unpasteurized milk and milk products: Most of our milk products are made from pasteurized milk. Pasteurized milk has gone through a special cleaning process to rid it of any bacteria, especially listeria. Milk boiled at high

temperature (pasteurized) kills the deadly bacteria.

10. Alcohol: During your pregnancy, it is important that you try to avoid alcoholic beverages. Though you may be used to having a glass of wine with dinner,

alcohol can severely damage your baby and hinder her development. Alcohol can pass through your placenta and prevent your baby from getting much-needed oxygen and nutrients. Heavy drinking during pregnancy can also increase your child's risk of developing Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, an illness that causes severe mental and physical side effects.

11. Other foods: Pineapple, papaya and sesame seeds should be avoided during pregnancy.

12. Go organic: Very important for a healthy baby. You do not want to feed your baby the hazardous pesticides and chemicals that come for free with groceries. Check out the informative hub on Top organic foods you should eat for more information.

.Limit caffeine to no more than 300 mg per day. The caffeine content in various drinks depends on the beans or leaves used and how it was prepared. An 8-ounce cup of coffee has about 150 mg of

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caffeine on average while black tea has typically about 80 mg. A 12-ounce glass of caffeinated soda contains anywhere from 30-60 mg of caffeine. Remember, chocolate contains caffeine -- the amount of caffeine in a chocolate bar is equal to 1/4 cup of coffee.

There’s no need to avoid hard cheese, processed cheese, cream cheese, cottage cheese, or yogurt.

What to Eat When Pregnant and Don't Feel Well

During pregnancy you may have morning sickness, diarrhea, or constipation. You may find it hard to keep foods down, or you may feel too sick to even eat at all. Here are some suggestions:

Morning Sickness: Eat crackers, cereal, or pretzels before getting out of bed; eat small, frequent meals throughout the day; avoid fatty, fried, and greasy foods.

Constipation: Eat more fresh fruit and vegetables. Also drink 6 to 8 glasses of water a day. Diarrhea: Eat more foods that contain pectin and gums (two types of dietary fiber) to help absorb excess water. Examples of these foods are applesauce, bananas, white rice, oatmeal, and refined wheat bread.

Heartburn: Eat small, frequent meals throughout the day; try drinking milk before eating; and limit caffeinated foods and beverages.

Why Do I Need More Calcium When Pregnant?

Calcium is a nutrient needed in the body to build strong teeth and bones. Calcium also allows blood to clot normally, muscles and nerves to function properly, and the heart to beat normally. Most of the calcium in your body is found inside your bones.

Your growing baby needs a considerable amount of calcium to develop. If you do not consume enough calcium to sustain the needs of your developing baby, your body will take calcium from your bones, decreasing your bone mass and putting you at risk for osteoporosis. Osteoporosis causes dramatic thinning of the bone, resulting in weak, brittle bones that can easily be broken.

Pregnancy is a critical time for a woman to consume more calcium. Even if no problems develop during pregnancy, an inadequate supply of calcium at this time can diminish bone strength and increase your risk for osteoporosis later in life.

The following guidelines will help ensure that you are consuming enough calcium throughout your pregnancy:

Eating and drinking at least four servings of dairy products and calcium-rich foods a day will help ensure that you are getting the appropriate amount of calcium in your daily diet.

The best sources of calcium are dairy products including milk, cheese, yogurt, cream soups, and pudding. Calcium is also found in foods including green vegetables (broccoli, spinach, and greens), seafood, dried peas, and beans.

Vitamin D will help your body use calcium. Adequate amounts of vitamin D can be obtained through exposure to the sun and in fortified milk, eggs, and fish.

Food Cravings During Pregnancy

Food cravings during pregnancy are normal. Although there is no widely accepted explanation for food cravings, almost two-thirds of all pregnant women have them. If you develop a sudden urge for a certain food, go ahead and indulge your craving if it provides energy or an essential nutrient. But, if your craving persists and prevents you from getting other essential nutrients in your diet, try to create more of a balance in your daily diet during pregnancy.

During pregnancy, your taste for certain foods may change. You may suddenly dislike foods you were fond of before you became pregnant. In addition, during pregnancy, some women feel strong urges to eat non-food items such as ice, laundry starch, dirt, clay, chalk, ashes, or paint chips. This is called pica, and it may be associated with an iron deficiency such as anemia. Do not give in to these non-food cravings -- they can be harmful to both you and your baby. Tell your health care provider if you have these non-food cravings.

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What Are Good Sources of Iron?

Meat and Seafood: Lean beef, chicken, clams, crab, egg yolk, fish, lamb, liver, oysters, pork, sardines, shrimp, turkey, and veal.

Vegetables: Black-eyed peas, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, collard and turnip greens, lima beans, sweet potatoes, and spinach.

Legumes: Dry beans and peas, lentils, and soybeans.

Fruits: All berries, apricots, dried fruits, including prunes, raisins and apricots, grapes, grapefruit, oranges, plums, prune juice, and watermelon.

Breads and Cereals: Enriched rice and pasta, soft pretzel, and whole grain and enriched or fortified breads and cereals.

Goals for Healthy Eating When Pregnant

Eat a variety of foods to get all the nutrients you need. Recommended daily servings include 6-11 servings of breads and grains, two to four servings of fruit, four or more servings of vegetables, four servings of dairy products, and three servings of protein sources (meat, poultry, fish, eggs or nuts). Use fats and sweets sparingly.

Choose foods high in fiber that are enriched such as whole-grain breads, cereals, pasta, rice, fruits, and vegetables.

Make sure you are getting enough vitamins and minerals in your daily diet while pregnant. You should take a prenatal vitamin supplement to make sure you are consistently getting enough vitamins and minerals every day. Your doctor can recommend an over-the-counter brand or prescribe a prenatal vitamin for you.

Eat and drink at least four servings of dairy products and calcium-rich foods a day to help ensure that you are getting 1000-1300 mg of calcium in your daily diet during pregnancy.

Choose at least one source of vitamin A every other day. Sources of vitamin A include carrots, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, spinach, water squash, turnip greens, beet greens, apricots, and cantaloupe. Know that excessive vitamin A intake (>10,000 IU/day) may be associated with fetal malformations.

Undercooked Meat, Eggs and Poultry

These types of foods, when not cooked properly, can be riddled with dangerous bacteria such

as salmonella, listeriosis and E. Coli. These bacteria are dangerous for the unborn baby, and

can lead to the baby getting quite sick. Foods in this category to avoid include:

Deli meats,Sushi,raw sea food especially shelfish,undercooked poultry or meat

It is important to fully cook all meats and poultry before eating them. Avoid raw poultry that

has been pre-stuffed. The raw juices that mix with the stuffing can foster harmful bacterial

growth. Frozen poultry that's been pre-stuffed is safer when cooked from frozen.

Eggs should be cooked until the egg yolks and whites are solid. Foods that are made with raw

or partially cooked eggs, such as eggnog or Hollandaise sauce, should be avoided during

pregnancy.

Recommended Foods with serving amounts Milk Servings

1 oz. cheese, 1 cup yogurt, 2 cups ice cream, 1 cup cottage cheese, 1 cup buttermilk, 1 cup custard

Vitamin A Foods

Carrots; dark, leafy greens; sweet potatoes, cantaloupe, pumpkin, apricots, broccoli, squash, tomato, watermelon

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4 oz. fish, poultry, or lean meat, 2 pieces chicken, ½ cup peanuts, 6 Tbsp. Peanut butter, 1-1/8 cup chili and beans, 2 eggs, 3/8 cheese pizza

Broccoli, citrus fruit, tomatoes, greens, strawberries, cantaloupe

Bread Servings

¾ cup cold cereal, 6 round crackers, 5 saltine crackers, 2 graham crackers, 1 cup popcorn, ½ hamburger or hot dog bun, 1 small muffin, 1 bagel, 1 corn tortilla, ½ cup macaroni, noodles, rice or spaghetti.

Iron

Lean red meat, spinach, whole-grain breads and cereals

Folic Acid

Green, leafy vegetables; dark yellow fruits and vegetables, legumes and nuts

Vitamin B6

Beef liver, pork, ham, whole-grain cereals; bananas

Calcium

Milk, cheese yogurt, sardines, spinach Vitamin B12Liver, meat, fish, poultry (vegetarians should take a supplement)

Fat

Meat, dairy products, nuts, peanut butter, margarine, dressings, vegetable oils

Whatever a woman eats, does, experiences during her nine months of pregnancy, has a direct bearing on her unborn child. That is why it is very important for a pregnant woman to eat a well-balanced and healthy diet during her pregnancy which has the right amount of vitamins, nutrients, proteins and carbohydrates to maintain the mother and the child's health. During this period, a woman should engage in pregnancy exercises so that various pregnancy symptoms, such as morning sickness, nausea, back pain can be minimized, and also, to remain in the best of health throughout pregnancy. During pregnancy, it is not only important that a woman undertakes a particular kind of diet and exercise program, but it is also equally important that she follows certain precautions as well as restrictions to avoid any risk and complications to her and her child's health. Here is a list of things to avoid during pregnancy.

Things to Avoid During Pregnancy: Foods

There are certain foods that a woman should completely forgo when she is pregnant. One of the things to avoid when pregnant is caffeine. Intake of excess caffeine during pregnancy by the mother is said to reduce the weight of the unborn child, since caffeine is a food that can enter into the placenta and also, cause a change in the heart rate of the baby.

Foods that are raw or are not cooked properly, especially undercooked eggs and meat, contain salmonella and bacteria, which too like caffeine, can enter the placenta, harming the fetal growth in the process. Another thing to avoid during pregnancy is eating refrigerated food directly, before heating it. Refrigerated food might contain some bacteria, which is harmful for the baby. During pregnancy, the blood circulation as well as the metabolic processes, inside a woman's body, go through a lot of changes, making the pregnant woman much more likely to have food poisoning and infection.

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Cheeses such as Mexican cheese and blue cheese, which are derived from unpasteurized milk, should be avoided during pregnancy. Clover, alfalfa, radish and other raw sprouts are a big no during pregnancy. Things to avoid list would be incomplete without the mention of excess intake of vitamin A or supplements of the same, as it can be harmful during pregnancy too.

Excess intake of mercury when a woman is pregnant, can cause damage to the nervous system of the baby. Certain variety of fish such as, tilefish, tuna, swordfish, king mackerel and shark, have high mercury content, so they should be avoided. Raw fish, smoked sea food, clams shrimps and oysters should not be eaten during pregnancy too.

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Things to Avoid During Pregnancy: Medical and Alternate Treatments

A pregnant woman should avoid taking drugs and medicines during the early part of her pregnancy as during this time, the major organs, such as heart and brain, are still in a developmental stage, and taking any chemicals can have a negative effect on them. Even medicines such as aspirin, which people normally take without consulting a doctor, should not be taken unless and until it is

recommended by a doctor. X rays are another thing that a pregnant woman should avoid, throughout the pregnancy.

Certain herbs can cause premature birth, uterine contractions, injury in the fetus and miscarriage, in a pregnant woman. Herbs to be avoided during pregnancy are black cohosh, passion flower,

pennyroyal, ephedra, saw palmetto, goldenseal, blue cohosh and yohimbe. Things to Avoid During Pregnancy: Activities

A pregnant woman should completely give up smoking and drinking alcohol. Both can cause prenatal defects such as damaged brain, retarded growth, dysfunctional organs, etc. in the baby. Over

exercising, indulging in yoga poses which are strenuous such as "Navasana", "Bikram Yoga" and "Pranayama", should be avoided, when one is pregnant. Read more on what to avoid when pregnant. These are some of the things to avoid during pregnancy. Besides these, it is very important that a pregnant woman avoids any kind of mental stress and anxiety, when she is pregnant. As, along with physical well-being, mental calm and balance is equally important during pregnancy.

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Performing Garbh Sanskar during Pregnancy

Do you know what garbh sanskar is? It is an astonishing way of teaching good things to the unborn baby in womb during pregnancy. Though it sounds

surprising, it is a scientifically proven fact. The literal meaning of word garbh is womb and sanskar is teaching good or right things. Garbh sanskars should be performed by mother during pregnancy. Read on to know more about garbh sanskar.

The literal meaning of garbh sanskar is educating the fetus in the womb. Many

parents found this interesting and felt quite satisfied too. In Indian culture it is

believed that education of real and traditional values and parenting starts right from

the time the fetus is confirmed in the womb. This is why when anyone gets pregnant

in home, the elder people advice to have positive thoughts and emotions to the

pregnant

woman

In the Hindu epic, Mahabharata, there was a warrior named Abhimanyu who is said

to have learnt a war skill when he was in the womb of her mother. He could only

learn to decode and enter the trap because by that time her mother felt asleep. This

was one of the reasons why he was killed because he did not know how to come out

of the trap.

The popularity of garbh sanskar is also because researchers have proved its

relevance and importance in the

development of the child

. There are scientific

evidences that prove that a baby inside the mother’s womb responds to the outside

stimulus and has the ability to listen. Doctors and experts also believe that there is a

significant effect of the hormonal secretions that are activated by the thoughts of a

mother on the unborn baby

Although it may sound strange and weird, your bond with your child starts right from

the time you conceive. It is not that when the child is born you know him. The

baby

listens to you and feels your feelings even when it is developing in your womb. You

can shape up your baby’s first impressions by listening to good music, visualizing,

massaging gently meditating and of course, with the help of positive thinking

The advantages of garbh sanskar are not only that you educate your child and there

is development of a bond between the mother and the child. In fact, this has a great

impact on the health of the mother also. The positive thinking and attitude promotes

physical well being of the mother

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Read Books

Read books that give positive feelings and thoughts and avoid books that are filled

with horror or thrilling feelings.

Positive Thinking

Think positive always. Try to retain a happy atmosphere around you. Bring only

positive thoughts to your mind and think about your good times in the past or

beautiful scenery or landscape or anything that makes you smile and feel happy.

Talk to Your Child

You can literally talk to your child when he or she is in your womb.

Listening Music

When you will listen to

music

, it will not only sooth you, your baby will feel good and

it will calm down your nerves too.

Practice Yoga

Prenatal

yoga

will be of great help here. Take help from an expert and do yoga

asanas under his supervision only.

Meditation

Breathing techniques and meditation also helps in developing positive thoughts and

will make you feel good from within.

If you want to get the best out of garbh sanskar, you must be very careful with your

lifestyle during pregnancy. Avoid watching horror movies and also avoid very spicy

or fermented food items during this period for better physical, emotional and spiritual

health of the baby.

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