Yes, you can have some bacon during your pregnancy, to put it succinctly.
With a few exceptions, eating well-cooked bacon is OK.
Here’s how to safely incorporate some smokin’ bacon into your diet while expecting.
Read on to find out more.
✅ Bacon is safe to eat when expecting. Just be careful to properly fry it until it is sizzling hot. In restaurants, stay away from ordering bacon because you never know how it will be prepared.
✅ There are alternatives to bacon made from meat, such as soy or mushroom bacon if you want to entirely eliminate all dangers.
✅ The key to eating anything is moderation.
✅ No one should consume too much bacon. However, there’s no reason you can’t occasionally savor a dish of perfectly cooked bacon while you’re pregnant.
The dangers of eating bacon when pregnant
There are various risk-free methods to consume bacon in moderation when expecting. But before doing anything, it’s wise to weigh the hazards.
Bacteria and other dangerous pathogens are frequently present in raw meat. As with any meat, contamination issues can arise through incorrect handling or cooking. Food poisoning and other illnesses may result from this.
Because of your weakened immune system and the possibility of some bacteria entering the womb, the risk of infection is significantly greater when you’re pregnant.
Pork and processed foods may include a variety of diseases, including:
- Streptococcus aureus
- Toxoplasma gondii
- The enterocolitic Yersinia
- Listeriosis monocytogenes
During pregnancy, infections can lead to:
- An early delivery
- the infant’s infection
Fortunately, all of these germs are eliminated by proper cooking, even if some of them can continue to grow in the refrigerator. Whether you are pregnant or not, it is crucial to make sure the bacon is properly cooked!
Nitrites and Nitrates
Processed meat is bacon. In order to prepare or preserve this type of meat, nitrates, and nitrites are added. The combination of ingredients gives bacon its vivid crimson hue.
It would naturally turn a shade of brown without them.
The accumulation of nitrates and nitrates in your body during pregnancy as a result of dietary nitrates and nitrosatable medications is connected to a higher risk of having your baby too soon, according to medical studies.
Infants may occasionally experience health issues as a result of premature birth.
When you’re pregnant or not, cut back on the amount of bacon and other processed and sandwich meats in your diet, such as sausages, ham, and smoked salmon.
Similar to lamb and beef, bacon is a type of red meat. Saturated and unsaturated fats are abundant in all red meat. Recent research shows that a moderate quantity of saturated fat is part of a healthy diet, despite the fact that fat, particularly saturated fat, has a poor reputation these days.
Whether or not you are pregnant, fat is a necessary vitamin. It aids in the use of vitamins and other nutrients. Your body requires various types of dietary fat in order to grow and nourish your child.
In fact, a 2016 study found that consuming enough saturated fat is associated with higher baby birth weight, which lowers the likelihood of having kids that are tiny for gestational age.
It’s also important to note that a 2018 study discovered that too much linoleic acid, an unsaturated fat found in plant oils like canola and soybean oil and high in omega-6 fatty acid, is hazardous during pregnancy.
Additionally, it might make kids more likely to develop behavioral issues in the future.
Even if plant foods have a lot of saturated fat, red meat still has more saturated fat than unsaturated fat (like nuts or seeds).
Bacon and other types of red meat vary in that they include higher amounts of both types of fat without the plentiful plant elements.
As with all foods, bacon and other red meat should be consumed in moderation as part of a healthy diet.
The addition of items high in saturated fat to your diet should be done with greater caution if you have high cholesterol or heart disease.
How to appropriately handle bacon while pregnant?
To avoid contamination, use these safety measures while buying, handling, and cooking bacon.
Where to store that bacon?
When purchasing bacon, seek pieces with pink, lean meat, and little to no fat. Verify that the validity period has not already passed.
How to preserve that bacon?
Bring the bacon home, and as soon as you can, store it in the refrigerator at or below 40°F (4.4°C). Bacon can be kept in its packaging in the fridge for up to seven days. It can be kept for up to a month in the freezer. Keep it separate from other prepared foods, such as fruits and vegetables.
How to handle that bacon?
Bacon that has been frozen needs to defrost in the fridge. Bacon should not be defrosted at room temperature on the kitchen surface. If the bacon was frozen, it is also okay to fry it immediately away.
Wash your hands both before and after handling bacon. Additionally, make careful to clean everything that comes into contact with raw meat, such as:
- Cutting surfaces
Hands and any surfaces that come into touch with the bacon should be washed in hot, soapy water.
How to cook bacon while you’re expecting?
The most crucial safety factor when eating bacon is how thoroughly you cook it. Raw pork bacon is the norm. Cooking is required before eating.
Bacon can be prepared in a microwave, an oven, an indoor grill, or a skillet or pan on the stove. Serve bacon that has been cooked to a temperature of 165°F (73.8°C). Because it is challenging to gauge the temperature of a thin piece of bacon, suppose the crispier is better.
Bacterial toxins should have been destroyed by the time the bacon was crispy. The thickness of the bacon and the heat utilized will affect how long it takes to cook to a crispy state. Wait until the meat is thoroughly cooked and crisp before sampling it.
Alternatives to bacon while you’re expecting
It could be a good idea to look for a replacement if all you want is the smoky flavor.
Turkey bacon is a well-liked alternative to regular bacon because it has fewer calories and fat than the latter. Turkey bacon is still regarded as processed meat, though.
By substituting soy-based bacon for raw meat, you may eliminate the concerns associated with handling it. By marinating strips of tempeh or tofu in spices, followed by frying or baking, you may make soy-based bacon at home.
There is also, as bizarre as it seems, mushroom bacon. To make mushrooms look like and taste like bacon without the dangers, they are marinated, roasted, and wood-smoked. What’s best? You can create it on your own.
When to be concerned about a pregnancy-related foodborne illness
It’s unlikely that you will contract Listeria or another foodborne infection while pregnant or at any other time if you exercise caution. However, it’s still a good idea to be aware of what to watch out for just in case.
Watch out for these signs if you’ve eaten raw or undercooked bacon or any other meat:
- Stomach ache
- Muscle pain
It is best to consult your doctor to make sure because these symptoms might frequently feel like pregnancy symptoms. Toxoplasma gondii infection typically goes undetected and without any signs in its victims.
Inform your doctor as soon as possible if you believe you unintentionally consumed undercooked or raw meat when you were pregnant.