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Guide to food and drink during pregnancy - text version

2-minute read

When you are pregnant, there seems to be a never-ending list of things you can and can't eat...and an even longer list of people willing to give you advice! Use our handy guide to find out what is safe to eat during your pregnancy and the foods and drinks you should avoid.



  • Cheddar
  • Parmesan
  • Stilton
  • Cottage cheese (pasteurised)
  • Mozzarella (pasteurised)
  • Cream cheese (pasteurised)
  • Paneer (pasteurised)
  • Halloumi (pasteurised)
  • Goat's cheese (pasteurised)
  • Processed cheese


  • Brie
  • Camembert
  • Feta
  • Ricotta
  • Blue cheese
  • Gorgonzola
  • Chevre
  • Any unpasteurised cheese
  • Imported cheeses

Eggs and other dairy products


  • Pasteurised milk
  • Cooked eggs
  • Fried eggs
  • Scrambled eggs
  • Quiche
  • Commercial mayonnaise and aoli
  • Yoghurt (pasteurised)


  • Eggs - raw or undercooked
  • Unpasteurised milk and milk product
  • Homemade mayonnaise, aioli or caesar dressing
  • Soft serve ice cream
  • Homemade chocolate mousse
  • Cake batter
  • Pancake batter

Meat and poultry


  • Beef
  • Chicken
  • Lamb
  • Pork
  • Sausages
  • Mince
  • Deli cuts (such as ham, chorizo, salami) - only if cooked fresh and eaten hot
  • Hot take-away chicken - purchase fresh and eaten hot


  • Cold cut meats (such as ham, salami) from deli, salad bar, takeaway
  • Cold chicken or turkey (from salad/sandwich shop)
  • Stuffing
  • Liver and liver products
  • Pate and meat spreads

Fish and seafood


  • Cooked fish and seafood
  • Shark/flake, marlin or broadbill/swordfish – no more than 100g (cooked) per fortnight, with no other fish that fortnight
  • Orange roughy (deep sea perch), catfish – no more than 100g (cooked) per week, with no other fish that week


  • Raw fish
  • Raw seafood
  • Chilled peeled prawns
  • Sushi - raw fish and seafood
  • Oysters

Fruit, vegetables and nuts


  • Whole fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs providing thoroughly washed to remove all traces of dirt
  • Legumes (such as beans, peas and lentils)
  • Nuts (unless already allergic)


  • Rockmelon
  • Raw sprouts (alfalfa, radish, mung beans, soybeans)
  • Prepackaged salads and fruit salads
  • Ready-made salads (buffets and salad bars)



  • Coffee (limit intake)
  • Tea (contains caffeine, limit intake)
  • Soft drink (limit - beware of excess sugar)
  • Juice
  • Milk pasteurised
  • Mineral water


  • Alcohol
  • Unpasteurised milk
  • Unpasteurised juice
  • Energy drinks
  • Herbal teas (caution)

See this guide as an infographic.

Learn more here about the development and quality assurance of healthdirect content.

Last reviewed: May 2021

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This information is for your general information and use only and is not intended to be used as medical advice and should not be used to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any medical condition, nor should it be used for therapeutic purposes.

The information is not a substitute for independent professional advice and should not be used as an alternative to professional health care. If you have a particular medical problem, please consult a healthcare professional.

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