Is it safe to eat chicken couscous during pregnancy?
Pregnancy is certainly a life-changing event. How wonderful it is the idea of giving birth! It’s natural for mothers to feel a little lost when it comes to getting used to new food habits and restrictions. What is good and what is bad for the baby? Is it safe to eat chicken couscous while pregnant? We have answered some of the questions about eating meat during pregnancy in a different article. In this post, we are going to focus on the potential risks of eating meat-based dishes .
Is it possible to eat chicken couscous when you’re pregnant?
Most kinds of meat are safe to be eaten during pregnancy. Whether it is beef, mutton, pork, chicken, turkey… pretty much all of them. It won’t be a problem for you to eat chicken couscous during your pregnancy under one condition; it is important that the meat is well cooked. A little reminder of the kinds of meat you can eat and the ones you should avoid during pregnancy.
It’s safe to eat:
- All beef, chicken, turkey, cooked pork;
You should avoid:
- Rillettes and pâtés;
What precautions should you take when eating chicken couscous during pregnancy?
Your meat must be either already cooked (like ham, for example), or cooked to a minimum of 70°C/158°F, regardless of if it’s cooked in a pan, in the oven or barbecue. This is the same thing as saying that in order to eat chicken couscous safely during your pregnancy you have to be sure that it is well cooked.
If you warm up a meal, remember that it has to be well cooked in the first place. In the refrigerator, keep the cooked and the raw food on different shelves to avoid contamination from the bacteria that the raw food might contain.
Risks associated with eating chicken couscous during pregnancy
The risks associated with meat consumption are related with the contamination with listeriosis and toxoplasmosis – a bacterium and a parasite, respectively. To avoid being infected by these two germs, it is important to be sure that the meat you eat has been cooked at high temperatures. The heat from cooking the meat at a certain temperature will kill both listeriosis and toxoplasmosis.
Can you eat chicken couscous during pregnancy when it is served with other ingredients?
Certain meat recipes might include alcohol like wine or rum as an ingredient. It is advisable to verify if that is the case with chicken couscous before eating. If it is the case, you should make sure that it only contains a small amount that has been cooked for very long enough. The minimum time for alcohol to evaporate is after boiling for 1h30.
Eating chicken couscous and vegetables during pregnancy
chicken couscous might quite often be served with raw vegetables. To avoid being infected by toxoplasmosis (this applies to pregnant women without antibodies against toxoplasmosis), it is very important to wash the vegetables before eating them.
If the vegetables are cooked, than you have nothing to worry about. Toxoplasmosis cannot withstand the heat, and so it won’t survive the cooking temperatures.
Same thing goes for listeriosis, which can be present in some types of cheese. Again, if the cheese is cooked, it will not be a risk for your pregnancy. For this reason, it is safe to eat chicken couscous while pregnant even if it contains cheese.
Cream or milk
If the dish happens to be made with cream or milk, it is preferable to be sure they’re pasteurized.
It is advisable to moderate the use of salt during pregnancy. Large quantities of salt might promote an increase in your blood pressure.
It is okay to eat chicken couscous during pregnancy, as long as you be sure the ingredients are either safe or well cooked.