Current DateSeptember 17, 2021

Can pregnant women eat eggs?

Are you pregnant and wondering if it is safe for you and your baby to eat an omelet or eggs?

When we are pregnant, we are not allowed to eat many foods, which prompts expectant mothers to ask themselves many questions about their diet: what can we eat, what we cannot and why? Can we eat fish or raw meat? Is it better to cook all the vegetables? As for eggs, are they allowed?

Can we eat eggs when expecting a baby?

As we know, eggs are a good source of protein and vitamins. But above all, they contain folic acid, a vitamin essential for the proper development of a baby since it contributes to the formation of the nervous system and reduces the risk of malformation. So, we can say that in addition to being good and easy to make, they are full of benefits for pregnant women.

But while eggs are important foods for the nutritional balance of expectant mothers and their babies, they are only so if you follow a few safety rules, especially when it comes to cooking them.

Be careful of the risk of salmonella

While eggs can therefore be an ally for all pregnant women, they can also be potentially dangerous for them and their fetuses. Indeed, raw eggs can carry the salmonella bacteria. This bacterium, which is also found in cold meats or raw milk cheese and which is dangerous for anyone, is even more so for children, pregnant women, and their unborn child.

As a result of the high fevers and the severe diarrhea it causes, the mother-to-be may experience contractions causing premature labor. To be safe for you and your baby, there are a few rules to follow:

  • Eat cooked eggs: it is forbidden for pregnant women to eat raw or soft eggs. You should therefore avoid soft-boiled or poached eggs and favor well-cooked omelets and hard-cooked eggs.
  • Avoid all raw egg-based preparations: mayonnaise, chocolate mousse or other pastries containing raw eggs are therefore preparations to be avoided in your diet, especially if they are homemade. On the other hand, the jar of mayonnaise or the tray of chocolate mousse from your supermarket does not involve any risk, because they are thermally sealed and comply with strict hygiene rules. That being said, we still recommend that you make sure they do not contain raw eggs before eating them.
  • Make sure that the white and the yolk are very solid: for this, the egg must be cooked to 70 °C or 158 °F, for about 10 minutes. The egg is then solid and perfectly cooked, and no longer contains any risk for you and your baby.

What are the symptoms of salmonella?

Salmonella usually causes a high fever, followed by vomiting and severe diarrhea lasting 3 to 5 days, as well as abdominal pain which can be severe. Such symptoms can lead to dehydration of the mother-to-be, which is just as dangerous for the baby as the fever.

While symptoms usually go away after this time, they can also get worse in people with weakened immunity (which is the case in many pregnant women). In the most severe cases, salmonella can lead to typhoid fever, a rare but extremely dangerous complication since it can cause sepsis.

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