Long holiday weekends are prime time for cookouts and family gatherings. And there’s one activity that can always bring people together – eating! Whether you’re hosting or preparing a side dish, be sure you take precautions in your preparations and in how your dish is served. These tips are especially important for pregnant women.
Before you begin your prep, here’s some tips to ensure your meal is a success:
- Wash your hands. And then wash all of your fruits and vegetables and cut away any damaged sections.
- Keep your raw meats and the tools you used to prepare them and keep them separate from the rest of your foods and supplies.
- Make sure your meats such as hamburgers and grilled chicken are cooked thoroughly.
- Be sure any salads and dishes with mayonnaise are kept cold and out of the sun.
- Be sure to put leftovers away quickly – within 2 hours after eating.
Why the extra precaution?
Bacteria from foods can cause Salmonella and Listeriosis, both of which can be harmful to pregnant women.
Listeriosis is a kind of food poisoning caused by Listeria bacteria. This type of bacteria can come from hot dogs, unwashed fruits and vegetables and cold salads.
Salmonella is another kind of food poisoning caused by Salmonella bacteria. You can find this kind of bacteria in undercooked poultry, meat, fish or eggs.
If you’re pregnant, one of these types of food poisoning can cause serious problems for you and your baby, including premature birth, miscarriage and stillbirth. This is why it’s important to prepare your foods properly and serve foods that are safe. Your guests will be sure to thank you for a wonderful cookout and great company.
Have questions about a certain dish you are planning to make? Text or email us at AskUs@marchofdimes.org