• Yes, there are a number of foods that should be avoided or eaten in moderation during pregnancy. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends pregnant women avoid hot dogs or luncheon meats unless they are reheated until steaming hot; soft cheeses such as feta, brie, Camembert, Roquefort, blue-veined, or Mexican-style; refrigerated pat├ęs or meat spreads; and refrigerated smoked seafood unless it has been cooked. These foods carry the risk of listeriosis, an illness linked to fetal damage and miscarriage. Pregnant women should also be careful eating raw vegetables, unpasteurized juices, liver, undercooked meat, poultry, or eggs, and should shun eggnog, hollandaise sauce, shark, swordfish, king mackerel, and tilefish. Also, they should not drink alcohol, smoke, or consume excess amounts of caffeine. Raw vegetables, unpasteurized juices, and undercooked meat all have the potential to transmit pathogens that cause diseases such as listeriosis and toxoplasmosis, which can harm the fetus. As always, if you have concerns about the safety of any food product during pregnancy, contact your physician.

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