Thanksgiving is the perfect holiday of family, self-reflection and indulgence. Whether you are getting ready to tuck into your Thanksgiving dinner up North in Canada, or gearing up for the holidays down south, it’s important to keep making the best choices when filling your plate. Here are some typical Thanksgiving foods to avoid if you’re pregnant this year.
Undercooked Turkey. Ensure that the internal temperature reaches at least 180 degrees Fahrenheit to avoid risk of salmonella or toxoplasmosis. To get an accurate reading, insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh muscle without touching the bone.
Stuffing cooked inside the turkey runs the risk of being contaminated by undercooked meat and will not reach a high enough temperature to kill bacteria. Have stuffing cooked outside in a pot or pan if you can instead.
Soft & Unpasteurized cheeses are off limits during pregnancy due to risk of listeria. That’s a no to that plate of brie, camembert, goat, gorgonzola and havarti cheeses starting or ending the meal.
Homemade sauces, creams & eggnog may be made with unpasteurized eggs – this increases the risk of salmonella. So ask or avoid the homemade hollandaise, ice cream, creams and the eggnog on the table. If you’re cooking, try pasteurised egg products like Egg Beaters instead.
Unpasteurized ciders should also be avoided, hot or cold, if they are home made or made from unpasteurized products.
Unwashed fruit & veg. Make sure those fresh, raw veggies from the garden are well washed to avoid any traces of toxoplasmosis.
Raw batter. Wait until the baking is done before sneaking in a sweet treat – the raw eggs are just not worth the risk. Full up on water and fruits and veg to snack on while cooking or waiting for dinner – you’ll have more room for the good stuff this way anyway.