Posts Tagged ‘eggnog’

Holiday foods and pregnancy don’t always mix

Friday, December 16th, 2016

Holiday mealThis time of year is often filled with family dinners, holiday parties and gatherings full of delicious food and lots of drinks. If you’re pregnant or thinking about pregnancy, you may need to reconsider indulging in some of your usual favorites.

Here’s a list of “no’s” and “maybes” to help you through your holiday celebration.

The no’s – foods to definitely avoid

  • Holiday spirits & cocktails: Drinking alcohol at any time during pregnancy can cause serious health problems for your baby. But, this doesn’t mean you need to miss the party – read our tips and substitutions to keep your holiday celebration going.
  • Soft cheeses: Unpasteurized soft cheeses, such as brie, feta, Camembert, Roquefort, queso blanco, queso fresco and Panela can cause listeriosis, a kind of food poisoning caused by listeria bacteria.
  • Raw or lightly cooked eggs or foods made with them, including cake batter, raw cookie dough and soft-scrambled eggs: These foods can contain salmonella bacteria, which can cause another type of food poisoning that can be dangerous during pregnancy.
  • Unpasteurized juice, milk or any foods made with unpasteurized ingredients are also a listeriosis and salmonella risk.

The maybes

  • Eggnog: Store-bought is usually ok, but you must check the label before drinking it. Read how to safely buy eggnog from a store. Homemade eggnog can contain raw or undercooked eggs. Our safe homemade recipe will help you create your own version that you can enjoy worry-free this year.
  • Coffee and hot chocolate: We don’t know a lot about the effects of caffeine during pregnancy so limit the caffeine you get each day to 200 milligrams. This is about the amount in 1½ 8-ounce cups or one 12-ounce cup of coffee. An 8 ounce cup of hot cocoa has 3-13 mg.
  • Holiday ham & meats: Be sure all meat is cooked thoroughly and never eat raw or undercooked meat, which can contain salmonella.
  • Too much sugar: During the holidays, you will find many desserts have added sugar or chocolate, which can put a dent in your healthy balanced diet. If you are eyeing that chocolate pie, try substituting another item with less sugar, to keep your overall sugar intake within reason. For example, switch out your juice for sparkling water with lemon.

With these ideas and a little extra attention to labels and how much you eat, you will be able to enjoy all your holiday festivities.

Have questions? Text or email us at AskUs@marchofdimes.org.

You’re pregnant, can you drink eggnog?

Monday, December 14th, 2015

eggnogThe answer is yes and no. It depends. Here’s the scoop:

Store-bought eggnog

Traditionally, eggnog was made with raw eggs, which is not good for pregnant women due to the health concerns of salmonella. Salmonella causes salmonellosis, a kind of food poisoning that can be dangerous during pregnancy . However, currently, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) restricts the use of raw eggs to less than 1% in products.

  • If you’re buying eggnog at the store, be sure to check the ingredient label to ensure it is egg-free or contains less than 1% egg product.
  • Also it is important that your eggnog be pasteurized. Pasteurization is a heat process that destroys salmonella that might be in eggs.

Homemade eggnog

Many families make a batch of home-made (and alcohol-free!) eggnog as part of their holiday traditions, but homemade eggnog causes many cases of salmonella each year due to raw or undercooked eggs. If you’re going to make your own eggnog, here are some tips:

  • Use egg substitute products or pasteurized eggs.
  • If you are using pasteurized eggs, the FDA recommends starting with a cooked egg base to ensure your safety.
    • To make a cooked egg base, combine eggs and half the milk as indicated in the recipe. (Other ingredients, such as sugar may be added at this step.) Cook the mixture gently to a temperature of 160°F, stirring constantly. The cooking will destroy Salmonella, if present. At this temperature, the mixture will firmly coat a metal spoon. After cooking, chill the mixture before adding the rest of the milk and other ingredients.

You can keep your eggnog holiday traditions, but remember to read all the labels on eggnog containers or carefully prepare your homemade eggnog.

Celebratory drinks… yum

Thursday, December 27th, 2012

mulled-ciderThe weather outside was frightful yesterday and the adults in the house decided to sip hot toddies, mulled cider or spiked eggnog while listening to holiday music. It was low-key and lovely, until the grandchildren came running in and asked for sips of our party drinks.

My daughter’s glass of eggnog looked amazingly like a milkshake to her daughter who made a beeline for it. Oops! While she doesn’t usually spike her eggnog, last night she had added a little of “the good stuff” and it would not have made a healthy drink for little small fry. We got her a cup of cocoa and she was happy. But it made me think to remind you that certain drinks can look like juice or milk and can be mighty tempting to little folks, so keep them out of reach.

And, of course, if you’re pregnant you know the drill, skip the cocktails and go for the mocktails. You can read more about bodacious beverages and alcohol-free cocktails at these links.

Eggnog anyone?

Monday, December 26th, 2011

eggnogEggnog is a favorite holiday drink and if you’re pregnant you can still have it. You just have to make sure it is pasteurized!  Most eggnog sold in stores is made from pasteurized egg product (check the label just to be sure).  But it is best to avoid homemade eggnog.  Homemade eggnog is often made with raw eggs and alcohol—two things you definitely want to avoid this holiday season.

Eggs can be contaminated with Salmonella and cause salmonellosis.  Salmonellosis is a food-borne infection caused by the bacteria Salmonella. Symptoms include diarrhea, nausea, fever, and abdominal cramps that last for several days. Occasionally a pregnant woman passes the infection to her baby. After birth, the infant may develop diarrhea, fever and, less often, meningitis.

If you are at a party with homemade eggnog and are looking for a fun and yummy substitution, you can revisit some of our older blog posts to see some “mocktail” and “bodacious beverage” recipes.  Some of these are so good you may start drinking them year-round!

For more food safety tips that may be helpful this holiday season, check out our website.

Hot toddies or eggnog?

Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

holiday-drinksI’m getting over bronchitis and am moving more slowly this holiday. I find I’m occasionally sipping hot toddies, mulled cider or spiked eggnog while I listen to holiday music and decorate. Everything is in slower motion this year and it’s really quite nice.

But yesterday, when my neighbor stopped by with her little one in tow, I discovered that my glass of eggnog looked amazingly like a milkshake to her daughter who made a beeline for it.  Oops!  While I don’t usually spike my eggnog, last night I had added a little of “the good stuff” and it would not have made a healthy drink for little Katelyn. I got her a cup of milk and she was happy.  But it made me think to remind you that certain drinks can look like juice or milk and can be mighty tempting to little folks, so keep them out of reach.

And, of course, if you’re pregnant, skip the cocktails and go for the mocktails.  You can read more about bodacious beverages here.