Ingredients to Avoid During Pregnancy
Experts spanning pregnancy, nutrition, and environmental health have set important standards for what food to avoid during pregnancy to support you and your growing baby.
Reading food labels is really important during pregnancy. Some ingredients and foods can lead to consumption of high levels of mercury, for example. The following recommendations can help you steer clear. (3)
• More than 6oz of white albacore tuna a week.
• More than 200mg of caffeine in a day.
• Hot dogs and deli meats.
• Raw fish.
• Fish with high levels of mercury, like bigeye tuna, king mackerel, swordfish, marlin, orange roughy, or tilefish (cooked or shelf-stable are okay).
• Raw or undercooked eggs or foods made with raw or undercooked eggs (e.g., soft-scrambled eggs, cake batter, raw cookie dough, non-shelf-stable Caesar salad dressings, eggnog, hollandaise).
• Unpasteurized juice, milk, soft cheese, or foods made with unpasteurized juice, milk, or soft cheese.
• Raw sprouts.
• Unwashed fruits and vegetables.
• Store-bought salads (e.g., chicken salad, egg salad, tuna salad).
• Most herbal pills and teas.
Cooking and Storing Food
Even the items we use to cook or store our food are important to keep an eye on. The items many of us touch on a near-daily basis can contain toxins for pregnant people and growing babies.
Although these toxins are pretty impossible to avoid, here are some ways to reduce your exposure (7):
• Avoid using plastic water bottles or food storage containers (bisphenols like BPA).
• Avoid using nonstick cookware, frozen and delivery food packaging, and unfiltered water (PFAS aka “forever chemicals”).
• Avoid using spot removers, degreasing products, and dry cleaning (PERC and TCE).
• Don’t put unwashed hands in your mouth (lead and flame retardants).
Cleaning, Beauty, and Skincare Products
Label reading while trying to conceive and during pregnancy is about a lot more than just food—it’s also about what we’re touching and putting on our bodies. These are the main cleaning, beauty, and skincare ingredients to avoid during pregnancy (8):
• Anything labeled “fragrance-free”
Lucky for all of us, the Environmental Working Group has pulled together two great resources for finding skincare, beauty, and cleaning products so we can make smart decisions on what we bring into our homes. (9, 10)
Ritual’s Made Traceable® Prenatal
The beauty of Ritual’s Essential Prenatal Multivitamin is that, with every capsule, you know what you’re putting into your body. Whether you’re thinking about trying, you’re in the midst of trying, or you’re already pregnant, a prenatal multivitamin will help bridge the nutrient gap between what you’re eating and the levels recommended before and during pregnancy.*
Our OB/GYN-approved formula† includes 12 clinically-studied key nutrients, including omega-3s sourced from microalgae, nature-identical choline, vegan-certified vitamin D3, gentle chelated iron, and methylated folate—an active form of folic acid. Because sometimes less really is more.*
†Based on the Ritual formulation reviewed by 150 OB/GYNs.