(Closed) Pregnancy rules – law abiding citizen or rebel without a cause?

posted 7 years ago in Babies
Post # 3
435 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2010

I’m not pregnant, nor have I ever been but from the people around me who have been pregant this is what I’ve noticed…..

First child- follow all the rules and eat very carefully, Second child- relax on all the diet restrictions and enjoy your food…

Post # 4
166 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

I’m currently 26 weeks pregnant. For the most part, I avoid everything I can. Personally, I feel too guilty afterwards that it isn’t worth it. I have had some chicken that wasn’t heated to steaming though and felt completely fine afterwards. I did give up caffeine but i’m pretty sure you are allowed to have some, you don’t have to give it all up completely. When I have cravings for ham or deli meats or things i’m not supposed to eat, I just put it on pizza and it gets heated enough to kill any bacteria.

I did get gastro once earlier in my pregnancy when I was being super careful about food and felt terrible for a few days but the only risk it would have to my baby is if I became dehydrated.

When my mum was pregnant there wasn’t anything she wasn’t supposed to do/eat except of course for smoking/drinking alcohol.

Post # 5
801 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2008

I’m 19 weeks along and so far I’ve taken the view of food as in moderation, pretty much anything is okay.  This is partly because I’ve been dealing with morning sickness since week 5 and my stomach has been super senstive.  Because of that, whatever I can get down I consider a bit of a win.  This past week I’ve finally started to settle down and been able to eat more regular meals but still not as healthy as I would like if I could stomach anything. 

In regard to drinks, if I can stomach it, I’ll allow myself one cup of coffee a few times a week as well as iced tea, but no other caffeine.  The coffee has only be reintroduced to my life this past week and boy did I miss it!

Post # 6
14498 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

My obgyn is a high risk specialist that was friends with our gp.  When I was pregnant he told me not to change a thing about my lifestyle nor my eating habits.  I am a huge coffee drinker (hate soda or sugar drinks) and he told me not to quit drinking my coffee as the withdrawls were really hard on the baby.   Eat normally, drink your normal things (except alcohol he told me a glass of wine/beer now and then after the first tri-mester was fine) and live your life normally.  One of my best friends just had a healthy baby girl and another is three months along and both of their doctors told them the exact same things.

Sorry, I am not of the thinking (thanks to pragmatic doctors around me) that you have to live in some kind of perfect living/eating/drinking cacoon to have a healthy child. 

Post # 7
2538 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

I did everything and I’d ask two of my friends (phd grad students for nutrition and parasites) and my doctor to find out if I really needed to follow them. Honestly, I had one coffee every morning because it was fine according to my doctor, but I found out about some other things that can harm the baby like soft serve ice cream. I can’t remember what it has in it, but it can be bad. Also, water, even bottled water can have some bacteria in it which can harm a baby if consumed at the wrong time during the pregnancy. Basically, you can only do what you can, but better be safe than sorry. I know. I followed everything and still became an Angel Mom.

Post # 8
2821 posts
Sugar bee

I’m still in the first trimester so I cut things a lot of things out.  I probably will not refuse half a glass of wine on occasion later on, but right now the thought of alcohol isn’t really appealing and the baby is developing quicklly so I feel like it’s for the best to not have any now.  Not to say if my husband tries a new beer I won’t have a few sips but I’ve pretty much have cut it out completely. 

Caffeine I’ve also pretty much cut out, still eat chocolate and once in awhile caffeinated tea, but coffee has always made me really jittery and it just doesn’t seem pleasant right now.  I know a lot of pregnant women who limit themselves to one coffee a day, but for me I said I’ll have one maybe on occasion but I haven’t had one yet, my stomach doesn’t like the idea too which is also part of it. 

The food restrictions I’m a bit more lax on, though I probably won’t go out and have sushi anytime soon.  For deli meats, I prefer my sandwiches toasted, so that’s not a problem.  I’m working on a stupid, stupid paper now so have not been able to sleep much so I’ll probably be a lot more careful this week than I have in other weeks about food since when you’re sleep deprived your immune system is weaker and in pregnancy your immune system is weaker, so double whammy.  However, other than this week I’ve been feeling pretty healthy so haven’t really felt the need to go overboard on being sterile. 

Post # 9
11325 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: February 2011

it is so interesting to me how all the rules seem to have changed! I don’t have a baby but I feel like growing up I always heard ABSOLUTELY NO ALCOHOL and no tuna and other than that eat whatever. Now there seems to be lots of food restrictions and they’re saying a little alcohol later on isn’t so bad. 

I don’t anticipate having much issue because as far as I know, I don’t eat a lot of the trouble foods anyways. I don’t like any seafood, I don’t eat lunch meat, I don’t eat soft serve (I like it, but it never occurs to me to go get it), and I only ever have 1 cup of coffee in the morning. I will probably skip the alcohol just because I’m a worrier and I don’t hardly drink anyways. 

Post # 10
553 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2009

I was definitely in the more relaxed category…as was my doctor. I ate sub sandwiches all the time. If I wanted sushi I just ate rolls with cooked meat instead of raw sashimi. I normally drink a lot of coffee but I did switch to half decaf on anything I made or got at starbucks. I had a glass or two of wine but the heartburn that resulted wasn’t really worth it. I got my steaks med rare instead of rare but couldn’t go any more than that. 

I think you really just do what feels right for you. I know listeria can be really serious during pregnancy but the chances of getting it are extremely small. 

Post # 11
4355 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

My sister in law was absolutely paranoid about everything throughout her pregnancy. Even a light chemical smell and she would vacate like there was a fire or something. I almost feel like her pregnancy wasn’t fun for her because of that.

After seeing her go through that I know when the time comes for me to have children I will not let it get to the point that I am hating every minute of being pregnant. Now that doesn’t mean I would go crazy, in all honesty I wouldn’t drink alcohol at all, and I would likely try to avoid caffeine and stuff too but if I want a coffee or a coke – so be it. At some point one way or another nature is going to take it’s course and being overly neurotic while carrying a baby isn’t healthy for them either.

Post # 12
636 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2009

I’m not pregnant yet but when I am I plan to ‘follow the rules’ haha. I am a vegetarian so deli meat isn’t a concern but I plan to avoid alcohol, caffeine, frozen yogurt out of the machines, honey, certain cheeses, and whatever else I’m told to avoid.  I am a pretty big rule follower in general so it goes along with that, and I just feel like we have all of this information to give our babies the best chance at having no issues and complications, why not use it?  I do have a pal who is in her first pregnancy and she drinks coffee pretty regularly and has wine at times and deli meat and everything is going perfectly fine.  I am more of a nervous nellie so I think following the ‘rules’ helps me feel more in control.

Post # 13
2090 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

Not pregnant yet, but I do plan to give up alcohol when I’m pregnant. I’ll probably avoid eating sashimi and other raw meats (I love me some carpaccio and tartar!!!), though I’ll still eat sushi and more medium-rare meats. I drink a lot of tea right now, which is my only source of caffeine, and will probably switch to more caffeine-free tea once pregnant. The rest of the rules though I will have to take on a case by case basis.

The fact that women have been birthing babies for centuries while eating crap diets, not taking vitamins, drinking, smoking, doing manual/hard labor and otherwise “living dangerously” makes me take these new rules with a grain of salt (which I’m sure is something else I should avoid when pregnant)! 😉

Post # 14
5921 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: December 2010

I am not pregnant, and don’t plan to be for a year or two.  I watched a special on Discovery Health about pregnancy, namely the first trimester.  It was very interesting to me, as I know little about pregnancy. 

I will probably abide by most all “rules” especially during the first trimester.  I’m not worried about fish or alcohol, since I don’t enjoy either all that much.

My concern is caffeine – I drink a latte from Starbucks nearly every day, and soda throughout the dayl  I always get my 8-10 glasses of water, but I love soda too.  I wish I didn’t.  At home I drink caffeine free Pepsi. 


Post # 15
1645 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

The most important time to be following the “rules” is during the first trimester. That’s when the majority of development occurs, and so it’s also when you have the highest chance of abnormalities occuring.

I cut out almost all diet soda, my biggest weakness, only having 2-3 12oz cans a week during the first trimester. I’m now 16 weeks, and for the last 2-3 weeks have been drinking more diet. I’ve cut it back down again and have been drinking half-caffeine coffee. I cut alcohol before we started TTC. I don’t each lunch meat, except one subway run where I had chicken that they microwaved then toasted so it was very hot. I never really ate soft cheese or sushi. I had plain tuna (the albacore is worse than the chunk light) once, and feel comfortable eating it about 1-2 times a month, but haven’t wanted it again. I haven’t taken any medications, except one tylenol for a headache that just wasn’t going away. I have had hamburgers, and get them done med-well instead of rare like usual, but I’ve eaten a med-rare steak without a problem. I’ve also had a few frosties from Wendy’s and a milkshake from McD’s without and issue.

I did some research into the diet soda/caffeine and found that most dr’s recommend no more than 1-2 12 oz servings of a regular caffeine drink per day. Darling Husband was really on me about diet soda consumption, since he read diet soda is the worst thing you can drink. However, it’s the caffeine in it that can cause fetal respiratory issues if you drink it in excess. My guess is that’s more an issue for people who are downing multiple liters of mt dew or jolt every day, and not for those drinking a few cans of soda or cups of coffee, but reading that did get me to cut back down a bit.

I wouldn’t feel comfortable taking more than a single sip of alcohol (mimosa for SIL’s wedding morning) while pregnant or TTC. I have worked with kids who have fetal alcohol syndrome, and it’s just not worth it. Especially because, as far as I know, there is no proof that you have to consume a significant amount of alcohol to cause FAS in your child. I was taught in grad school (just over 2 yrs ago) that any amount could cause FAS. My priority is my child, not having a drink, though it’s not that I haven’t wanted a drink now and then.

I think it’s about being educated and making the decisions that fit for you. I think I remember Mrs Avocado writing about consuming deli meat while pregnant because she felt comfortable with the risk. I don’t think everyone necessarily needs to change everything so drastically. For me, I try to think about holding my child and the devastation I would feel if anything was wrong. That’s enough to quell my urge for most things that are on the “no no” list while pregnant.

Post # 16
447 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2009

I followed the rules for the most part until my third trimester. At that point, everything was looking great, so I felt okay about eating whatever I wanted. Probably the only thing I didn’t touch was fish, but that’s partially because I hate fish (except tuna), and don’t really know anywhere around here for sushi. I had my soda everyday, had the occasional deli meat that I didn’t heat up, and soft serve ice cream I only had here and there. I had chocolate even before my third trimester, but it was a craving of mine, and I didn’t fault myself for one Hershey’s kiss every day (though it eventually turned into more)

Also, I don’t drink so that wasn’t an issue for me.

It was so much easier when I didn’t allow myself to worry about food. I’m a natural worrier, so just adding more worry wasn’t helping me.

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