Last updated on February 28th, 2023 at 01:12 pm
The benefits, recommendations, safety, and potential side effects of eating strawberries during pregnancy.
Yes, you can eat strawberries while pregnant. Strawberries are healthy and nutritious fruits that provide essential vitamins and minerals for you and your developing baby!
However, as with any fruit, it’s important to practice proper food safety measures, such as washing strawberries thoroughly and avoiding moldy or rotten ones.
Recommendations for Eating Strawberries During Pregnancy
Below are general information about the amount of strawberries you can eat while pregnant and other safety recommendations regarding their consumption during pregnancy.
These are general guidelines and may vary depending on your personal health history and needs. If you have any concerns about eating strawberries during pregnancy, it’s best to consult your healthcare provider to determine the best approach for you and your baby.
Recommended daily amount of strawberries for pregnant women:
Eating a moderate amount of strawberries as part of a balanced diet for pregnant women without dietary limitations is considered safe.
Strawberries are a nutritious and healthy food for pregnant women. However, ensure they are not the sole source of essential vitamins and minerals. Your diet should include various fruits and vegetables!
If you have no dietary limitations regarding eating strawberries, you can easily include about 1 cup (150g) of strawberries daily as part of your balanced diet.
General recommendations for eating strawberries during pregnancy:
- Wash them thoroughly: To reduce the risk of bacterial contamination, wash strawberries thoroughly before eating.
- Choose organic strawberries: To minimize pesticide exposure, choose organic strawberries when possible.
- Moderate intake: Eating a moderate amount of strawberries as part of a balanced diet is considered safe for most pregnant women.
- Avoid moldy or spoiled strawberries: Don’t eat moldy or rotten strawberries, as they may contain harmful bacteria.
- Consider salicylate levels: Some women may be advised to limit their intake of foods high in salicylates, including strawberries. If you are salicylate sensitive, you should avoid strawberries during pregnancy.
- Monitor for allergic reactions: If you have a history of strawberry allergy, be cautious when consuming strawberries during pregnancy. Or better, avoid them entirely, even if you crave them. If you experience any symptoms of an allergic reaction, seek medical attention immediately.
Potential Benefits of Eating Strawberries During Pregnancy
Strawberries contain a high amount of antioxidants, vitamin C, and folate, which can provide several potential benefits when consumed during pregnancy:
- Antioxidants: Antioxidants in strawberries can help protect the body against oxidative stress and reduce the risk of chronic diseases.
- Vitamin C: Vitamin C helps boost the immune system and maintain healthy skin, bones, and teeth. It can also aid in iron absorption.
- Folate: Adequate folate intake during pregnancy is crucial for proper fetal development and can reduce the risk of congenital disabilities.
While strawberries are nutritious, they do not provide all the essential nutrients needed during pregnancy. This means you should not rely on strawberries alone but include them in a healthy pregnancy diet full of other fruits and vegetables.
Potential Risks of Eating Strawberries During Pregnancy
While strawberries are generally considered safe to eat during pregnancy, there are a few potential risks to be aware of:
1. Pesticide exposure
Some strawberries may contain residue from pesticides used during their cultivation. To minimize pesticide exposure, choose organic strawberries when possible and wash them thoroughly before eating.
2. Bacterial contamination
Strawberries can become contaminated with harmful bacteria such as E. coli and Salmonella, which can cause food poisoning. To reduce the risk of contamination, make sure you wash them thoroughly before eating! Also, avoid eating any that are moldy or rotten!
3. Natural compounds in strawberries
Some women may be advised to limit their intake of strawberries and other foods that contain high levels of natural compounds called salicylates.
Salicylates are natural compounds found in many foods, including strawberries. They are similar to the active ingredient in aspirin and are sometimes called “aspirin-like compounds”.
If you are or think you are salicylate sensitive or have any concerns regarding salicylate, it’s best to consult your doctor before eating strawberries while pregnant.
4. Strawberry allergy
First, if you have a history of strawberry allergy, do not eat them during pregnancy. And second, if you suspect you may be allergic, talk to your doctor before eating strawberries during pregnancy.
Allergy to strawberries manifests with itching, rashes, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, and breathing problems. If you experience any of the listed symptoms after eating strawberries, it’s essential to seek medical attention immediately.
Eating a moderate amount of strawberries as part of a balanced diet is generally considered safe for most pregnant women.
However, it’s best to consult your doctor if you have concerns or have experienced any symptoms or discomfort after eating strawberries while pregnant.
Frequently asked questions about strawberries in pregnancy
Can I eat strawberries in all trimesters?
Yes, most pregnant women can safely consume strawberries during all trimesters of pregnancy.
Can I drink a strawberry milkshake or smoothie during pregnancy?
Drinking strawberry smoothies and milkshakes can be a convenient way to incorporate strawberries into your diet and is safe during pregnancy. But only if you follow some safety precautions!
Safety precautions include ensuring they are made with pasteurized ingredients, as consuming raw or undercooked ingredients can increase the risk of foodborne illness.
Pasteurized ingredients commonly used in strawberry smoothies include:
- Milk or dairy-based products such as yogurt or kefir
- Fruit juices, like orange or apple juice
- Frozen fruit, such as strawberries or bananas
- Sweeteners like honey or maple syrup
- Ice and ice cream
In addition, smoothies and milkshakes can be high in sugar if not prepared properly, so avoid adding added sugars!
Is strawberry tea safe during pregnancy?
You can drink strawberry tea during pregnancy. But ensure it is made with dried, pasteurized strawberries and doesn’t contain any other ingredients that may be unsafe during pregnancy.
Can I drink strawberry juice while pregnant?
Yes, you can drink strawberry juice during pregnancy. However, drink it in moderation and choose only pasteurized products to reduce the risk of foodborne illness.
Some store-bought juices may also contain added sugars, so choosing a product with no added sugars is best.
Is strawberry jam safe during pregnancy?
Yes, strawberry jam is safe during pregnancy, but remember that consuming large amounts can contribute to weight gain. Some store-bought jams may contain added sugars, so choosing a product with no added sugars is best.
Also, choose only pasteurized products to reduce the risk of foodborne illness.