Traditional St. Paddy’s Day Fare and Pregnancy

Traditional St. Paddy’s Day Fare and Pregnancy

Another holiday and more worries that you might not be able to partake in some of the food that will be around during the celebrations. On St. Patrick’s Day, you might be surprised to learn, the only thing you have to avoid is the drinking.

Corned Beef and Cabbage

This is the staple meal of the Irish American St. Paddy’s celebration. Thousands of crockpots across the nation will be slow cooking this meal to perfection come March 17th. The problem is that many pregnant women may be confused as to whether corned beef is safe. We know we are supposed to avoid deli meats during pregnancy because of the risk of listeriosis. This illness can cause miscarriages, premature deliveries, and still births so its nothing to mess with.

Listeria is a common bacteria found in water and soil. Foods can become contaminated with this bacteria from the soil, and some animals can be carriers as well. While deli meats are pasteurized, which does kill the bacteria, there is a risk that they could become recontaminated during the packaging process. This is the reason we are told to avoid deli meats.

So why would corned beef be the exception?

The answer is because it is being cooked. To avoid listeriosis you can actually eat any deli meat you want so long as you reheat the meat to a steaming 160º -170º F. This kills the listeria. On St. Paddy’s make sure you got the temperature right by getting out your handy dandy meat thermometer and take a measurement before enjoying.

Is there any other reason to avoid Corned Beef?

Corned beef is very high in sodium and in fat. I doubt your doctor would recommend corned beef as a staple to your diet during your pregnancy, however as a treat for the holiday they probably won’t have a problem with it. Unless you have some health risks such as hypertension. For this reason you may want to contact your doctor to see if they feel you are in the clear to enjoy it on this one occasion.

What about the Cabbage?

The good news is that cabbage is actually very good for you and baby. This no fat low calorie vegetable has a multitude of vitamins and minerals that benefit your pregnancy diet. It is rich in Folic acid which helps to prevent certain neurological birth defects. It is also a good source for Fiber, Vitamin C and Calcium.  The only drawback is that because of the fiber you may experience gas and bloating. Probably not the most comfortable side effect while also carrying a baby.

Mar 09, 2013
By: gemma

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