During pregnancy, there are certain rules regarding what you eat.
Your body is now working to support another life, which means your dietary needs change.
Many expectant mothers wonder whether they can eat fermented foods or foods that contain natural pickles, such as sauerkraut and kimchi, during pregnancy.
Before you stop eating these healthy foods, read on to learn more about the safety of eating sauerkraut during pregnancy.
What is Sauerkraut?
Sauerkraut is a dish made from fermented cabbage and can be eaten raw or cooked.
It is often used in dishes such as Reuben sandwiches and kielbasa.
The cabbage used to make sauerkraut is typically pickled with saltwater brine.
Creating sauerkraut converts sugars in the cabbage into lactic acid, which preserves the food and gives it its sour taste.
Is Sauerkraut Safe During Pregnancy? Can Pregnant Women Eat Sauerkraut?
Sauerkraut is a wonderful addition to your pregnancy diet.
Like with anything you eat or drink throughout pregnancy, it’s vital to get your doctor’s okay.
Each gestation is different, and the health of your baby and yourself will influence whether or not you can have sauerkraut during pregnancy.
The sour taste of sauerkraut results from fermentation, which produces lactic acid.
There have been reports that eating too much sour food can lead to tooth decay and cavities, but there doesn’t appear to be any evidence linking fermented foods with dental problems or preterm birth.
There has also been no research indicating that eating sauerkraut in pregnancy will harm your baby or yourself.
If you love sauerkraut and can’t go without it, feel free to enjoy it in moderation during your pregnancy.
However, if you’re concerned about the safety of eating sauerkraut when pregnant, talk with your physician about your diet.
Your doctor is the best person to give you breastfeeding advice since they were there during your pregnancy.
Your doctor can help you determine if eating sauerkraut is safe for both you and your baby.
Health Benefits Of Eating Sauerkraut During Pregnancy
There are many reasons to add sauerkraut to your pregnancy diet.
Here are just a few of the health benefits of eating sauerkraut during pregnancy:
- Sauerkraut is a wonderful source of fiber, which can help prevent and relieve constipation when you’re pregnant. Fiber also helps keep your digestive tract healthy, which is especially important when you’re pregnant.
- Because sauerkraut is fermented, it contains probiotics and prebiotics, which are helpful to you and your baby. Both of these can help with digestion and immunity while also promoting healthy bacteria in your digestive tract.
- Sauerkraut is a great source of vitamin C, and vitamin K. Vitamin K helps promote blood clotting and can reduce bruising, even when you’re pregnant. Vitamin C also supports your immune system during pregnancy, which will help you stay healthy.
You can read a full-detailed post on the health benefits of eating sauerkraut during pregnancy here.
Of course, you should eat sauerkraut in moderation while pregnant.
If you love this dish and plan on having it often, remember to continue counseling with your health care provider beforehand.
What is the Risk of Eating Sauerkraut During Pregnancy?
According to the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), pregnant women should eat no more than one cup of sauerkraut or other fermented vegetables per day.
Raw sauerkraut consumption while expecting might lead to foodborne illness, specifically listeriosis.
Listeriosis is a serious bacterial infection that can lead to miscarriage and stillbirth.
To avoid the risk of contracting listeriosis while pregnant – or any other type of bacterial infection – it’s best not to eat raw sauerkraut.
All sauerkraut sold in supermarkets has been heated, eliminating the risk of contracting listeriosis from eating it.
Talk to your physician or midwife if you’re concerned about your sauerkraut consumption during pregnancy.
They can advise how much is safe for you and your baby.