Is Chinese Food Safe During Pregnancy

By Kieth | September 12, 2012
Is Chinese Food Safe During Pregnancy

Pregnant women are often advised not to eat out during their pregnancies but this need not necessarily be true. Women can eat most types of food and cuisines when pregnant. What they need to keep in mind is the word 'moderation.'

Chinese food features high on the list of cravings most pregnant women experience. Mothers-to-be are usually encouraged to give up Chinese cuisine but books, doctors and parenting websites say otherwise. Chinese food can be great from a place that practices hygiene while cooking and uses fresh ingredients. When you buy your Chinese food, make sure it is from a place where the quality of ingredients is not suspect.  As long as you know where you are getting authentic Chinese food, it cannot be bad.

For instance, food like spring rolls or chicken balls cannot be considered authentic Chinese food and are best avoided. Avoid fried food or food that can go stale quickly. Avoid foods that contain fish or seafood. Seafood and fish are usually a no-no for pregnant women due to the high content of mercury in sea water. Pick the steamed and stir fried vegetables with fresh rice or noodles. As tempting as it might be, avoid fried rice.

Chinese food also gets a bad reputation because it can contain monosodium glutamate or MSG. MSG has been on the receiving end of a lot of bad publicity but it does not harm you or your baby. If you were sensitive to MSG before you got pregnant, then you should avoid it during your pregnancy too. Allergies and food intolerance are generally highlighted during pregnancies.

Pregnant women are also advised not to eat out too often. Fast food usually contains high degrees of sodium and fat. You cannot ignore that fact which is why moderation is also very important.  Excess sodium can increase water retention in pregnant women and in really high doses, sodium can also cause preeclampsia.

All said, you have to be able to gauge what your body wants and how much to satisfy that urge. Each woman's body is different and will react differently to the same food. Your body might display different traits even with different pregnancies so being intuitive helps. While books and forums are a good guide, it is not the gospel truth. Rely on your instincts and practice everything in moderation.

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