Moms ask, “Can I eat Mexican food while pregnant?”
The answer is not a straight yes or no.
Sure, there are certain Mexican dishes that are not exactly very healthy or nutritious. However, there are those that can actually be good for you.
So, if you are on the fence about whether you should eat this type of cuisine during pregnancy, listen up. We will give you the low-down on what’s good or bad about this dish. You will also learn healthy dishes to choose from that are tasty, too!
The Basics of Mexican Food
Mexican food is flavorful, spicy, and fun. What’s not to love about it?
But at the same time, there are Mexican dishes that contain a ton of chili and spices. And if you are trying to stay healthy, it will not help to keep consuming this type of food on a regular basis.
When made fresh, many Mexican dishes are safe to consume during pregnancy. But there are those that may not be quite safe or ideal to eat by pregnant women. For instance, queso that is not cooked very well may cause more harm than good to your body.
The same holds true with meat or cold cuts added into this type of dish.
For the most part, Mexican food is quite interesting. Some staples in Mexican food include salsa and guacamole.
Guacamole is a tasty and nutritious dip made from avocados. This is a rich source of healthy fat, B12, vitamin K, C, and several minerals. When made fresh, it is not just tasty but absolutely nutritious, too.
As for salsa, it is basically tomatoes with some spices. There is very hot salsa, mild, and one that’s in-between. Just like guacamole, it is a tasty dip for your nachos, or something to flavor tacos, and other dishes.
Then you have your queso. If you enjoy a cheesy dip, then this is a great choice for you. However, it is essential to determine the source of your queso cheese. In some Hispanic cultures, queso comes from raw, unpasteurized milk.
Thus, it may be a bit tricky for pregnant women to eat this considering potential health issues linked with this type of milk – especially for expecting moms.
The same goes for sour cream. It is another fun dip or topping in many tacos, nachos, and burritos. It adds a tangy taste to your dishes but it is not quite safe if the source is not pasteurized. So, you have to inquire from the restaurant about the safety of the source.
And of course, Mexican food will never be complete without tortillas and nachos. There are nachos made of simple ingredients such as corn, oil, and salt. However, others may include artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives. Read the labels to be sure you are not getting a chemical-laden bag of nachos.
How to Stay Safe When Eating Mexican Food
As we have previously mentioned, Mexican food comes in a variety of types.
The ones indicated above are typical for snacks, dips, and sauces.
But since Mexican food is so diverse, it is important to take note of the other options you’ve got and how to make sure that you are choosing the right kind.
For instance, you have your tacos. This dish consists of the filling, which may be meat, shredded cabbage or other greens, some beans, and salsa. It is a little bit similar to burritos except for the shell. Taco shells are harder and crispier while burritos are soft.
And as for the flavor, burritos often have guacamole and sour cream while tacos tend to have a different thing. Yet, they both taste absolutely wonderful!
Now, there are your other Mexican dishes such as the Carne Asada or a type of steak. There are also other meat-based dishes such as the Ceviche, which is mainly cured fish. When cooked thoroughly, these types of food should be safe to eat by pregnant women.
Of course, Mexican food will never be complete without decadent desserts.
There are a few things you need to take note of when eating these tasty treats. Keep in mind that these are mostly sugary, sweet stuff. So, if you are trying to keep your blood sugar levels balanced (and you should!), then it helps to regulate your intake of these desserts.
First, we’ve got the flan. It is mainly made of egg with sugar, and it has a creamy, tasty flavor to it. There should not be anything wrong about this treat, as long as the source of the egg is reputable. The sugar content should also be kept on a minimum to not overload your body with it.
Churros is another well-loved Mexican food. It is the Mexican version of a doughnut, and it is made of flour and fried to perfection. This may be okay for pregnant women to eat. But since it is often dipped in chocolate, the caffeine levels should be kept within the minimum.
Lastly, there’s your ice cream. Who doesn’t love eating something cool and sweet on a hot day?
But then again, it is best to determine the ice cream’s sugar content and source of milk. You need to be sure that it is from a reputable source to avoid health risks. It is also important to limit your sugar intake, otherwise, it puts you at risk of high blood sugar levels. This is definitely not something you would want during your pregnancy.
Eating Mexican food during pregnancy should be safe.
As long as you check the sources of ingredients, steer clear from high-sugar and high-cholesterol food, you should be okay.
And most importantly, always eat in moderation to prevent causing health concerns to your baby and to your body. This way, you can have a healthy and happy pregnancy while at the same time nurturing your baby’s development.
Want to learn more about the right diet during pregnancy? Here is a video that may help: