We all hear about the laundry list of items you should avoid during pregnancy- Don’t eat this, drink more of this, don’t take this medication…the list goes on. But what we don’t hear about as much is what foods you should avoid when you are trying to get pregnant, which are just as important because let’s face it, that big laundry list is a moot point if certain things are preventing your from getting pregnant in the first place. While some of these are no-brainers, other items on this list might be more surprising. But some good news- once you get pregnant, you will need to continue avoiding most of these foods, so you will get a jump start on that laundry list!
1. Caffeine- We aren’t telling you to give this up quiet yet but that’s definitely coming once you are pregnant. When trying to conceive, it’s recommended to keep the daily caffeine intake to less than 200 mg, which is about the same as a 12-ounce cup of coffee. It’s also been suggested that soda intake can increase your chances of ovulation disorders.
2. Low-Fat Dairy- Those low-fat yogurts, cheeses and milks might not be the best idea when trying to conceive. Low-Fat dairy products contain higher levels of androgen hormones, which can interfere with your menstrual cycle.
3. High Mercury Fish – This is only when pregnant you argue, right? The problem with mercury is that it causes damage to the nervous system and that includes the nervous system of a developing fetus, which is usually being developed before you even realize you are pregnant. So, it’s won’t necessarily interfere with you chances of getting pregnant, but if you are actively trying to get pregnant it’s best to avoid just in case.
4. Trans Fats- If we are being truly honest with ourselves, trans fats should generally be avoided by everyone but if you are trying to get pregnant, it’s definitely a great time to be more diligent about keeping them out of your diet. Trans fat causes insulin resistance and inflammation, which in turn can lower fertility and disrupt the flow of nutrients to your reproductive system.
5. Soft Cheese and Deli Meats- As delicious as these foods are, they can cause some major issues in the early stages of pregnancy. Similar to high mercury fish, these might not necessarily prevent you from getting pregnant but could cause a miscarriage and/or serious health problem in newborns before you even realize you are carrying. The other problem with listeria is that due to its long incubation period (up to 70 days) you can have it before you even conceive and not realize it.
6. High Glycemic Index Foods – Similar to trans fats, foods with a high glycemic index can cause system disruption with high levels of insulin during the conception process. Blood sugar spikes due to these types of foods can affect hormones, which in turn can impede ovulation. Try and keep your blood sugar balanced by incorporating foods with low glycemic index in your diet.
7. Alcohol- Similar reaction to caffeine, right? Well, similar to caffeine, we aren’t telling you to give it up yet, just try and keep it to under about seven drinks in a week. Alcohol can contribute to infertility and deplete vitamins that are crucial to a developing fetus. The greatest risk, according to doctors, to the fetus from alcohol exposure is during the 1st trimester so it’s best to avoid completely after ovulation.
Did you try to avoid any certain foods while trying to conceive? We would love to hear about it in the comments below!