Your unborn baby’s overall wellbeing depends on your diet, so everything you put into your mouth should be healthy. Processed foods, aspartame, and industrially raised meat and poultry are some of worst foods to eat while pregnant as they put your baby at risk for a host of health problems.
Don’t Eat Processed Foods When You’re Pregnant
Foods are always healthiest when you eat them in their natural form. Processed foods are not good for you because they are filled with unhealthy additives like trans fat, sugar, and excessive amounts of salt.
Some examples of processed foods include:
• fish sticks
• chicken nuggets
• canned goods
• lunch meats
• pasteurized milk
• cookies and cakes
• spam and other canned meats
• white flour
• frozen foods
• hot dogs
During pregnancy, sugar is absorbed into the bloodstream at a rapid pace. In order to regulate this sugar, your pancreas releases insulin. The more sugar you eat the harder your pancreas has to work to produce insulin. If your pancreas can’t keep pace with your body needs you can develop a condition known as gestational diabetes.
When you develop gestational diabetes, your baby may grow too large. This can cause serious complications during birth. Eating sugar during pregnancy can also cause you to gain an excessive amount of weight. This increases your risk of obesity-related illnesses like heart attacks and stroke.
The excessive amount of salt used to preserve processed foods can contribute to high blood pressure during pregnancy. This condition can narrow the vessels that provide essential nutrients and oxygen to the fetus.
Suffering from hypertension while you’re pregnant can lead to placental abruption, preeclampsia, low birth weight, preterm delivery and slow fetal growth.
Trans fat is a man-made fat that is created by mixing hydrogen atoms with liquid vegetable oil. This type of fat is commonly found in processed baked goods, margarine and fried foods like French fries and chicken.
Trans fat raises bad cholesterol and reduces good cholesterol. This food additive also increases the risk of infertility and promotes immune dysfunction, diabetes, heart disease, obesity and cancer.
Industrially Raised Meat and Poultry
Industrially raised cattle, pigs and chickens are filled with growth hormones and antibiotics. The growth hormones are used to make the livestock grow larger. The antibiotics are used to control the diseases and infections that can result from the animals being kept in unsanitary conditions.
Industrial farmers add dead animal parts to the animal feed because it is an inexpensive way to provide their livestock with protein. The chemicals farmers pump into the livestock gets into the food you eat and can make your unborn baby vulnerable to health problems.
Consuming aspartame during pregnancy can carry a number of health risks for you and your unborn baby. This artificial sweetener has been linked to a several neuropsychiatric disorders. Some of them include:
• mood swings
• panic attacks
• hearing loss
• vision problems
• manic episodes
• anxiety attacks
• heart palpitations
• visual hallucinations
Aspartame has been shown to trigger or exacerbate chronic fatigue syndrome, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s, lymphoma and mental retardation. The more aspartame you eat, the more you crave. This can increase the demand on your pancreas to produce more insulin, and result in unwanted weight gain and diabetes.
Your baby relies on you to make smart food choices on his behalf. By eliminating processed foods, aspartame and industrially raise meats and poultry, you can easily avoid some of the unsavory additives that can adversely affect your baby’s health.