One such controversial thing is chicken salad. Some people say it is safe, while others say it's not. Let's have a detailed discussion if you are also questioning the same thing and curious to know if you can eat chicken salad during pregnancy.
Can You Eat Chicken Salad While Pregnant?
Yes, in most cases, chicken salad is completely safe to eat during pregnancy; however, you should avoid some dressings or types of chicken at all costs when you're pregnant. Another thing that also affects the consumption of chicken salad during pregnancy is the preparation method and how long it is to be stored.
These are all the factors that you should look at before taking any chicken salad in pregnancy. Chicken salad is a healthy diet, but it can become a fatal diet for your baby if you are not cautious enough.
Cold Chicken Salads
It is a type of chicken salad that is served with cold chicken and some veggies. This type of chicken salad is safe for consumption; however, a few precautions are needed.
Precautions To Eat Salad At The Home
- If you prepare these chicken salads at home, wash fresh fruits and veggies thoroughly
- Don't use pre-packaged vegetables and fruits in pregnancy, as it can be dangerous for babies.
- If the chicken is cooked at home, ensure it is refrigerated properly, and don't use chicken older than two or three days.
- You can also buy canned or stored chicken, but heat it at home to avoid the risk of listeria.
Precautions To Eat Salad At Hotel
When preparing chicken salad at home, you know what you put in it. However, the case is not the same with hotels, and you have to take extra precautions such as
- Ask them to wash the veggies thoroughly and heat the chicken before putting it in your salad.
- If a restaurant has a central distribution system, you should avoid eating at such hotels because pre-packed veggies and chicken have a high risk of listeria.
- Last but not least, you must avoid any dressing containing raw egg or dairy when eating at hotels.
Dressing Based Salad
These types of chicken salads are made with different types of chicken, dressings, and some vegetables. These salads are also known as sandwich filler salads because most people use them for making sandwiches. The safety of this salad depends on its source.
- If the salad is stored made, and refrigerated. In that case, you should avoid it because, according to the FDA, there is a risk of cross-contamination, and listeria also grows easily in such conditions.
- Another type of chicken salad we see in supermarkets is commercially made ones. These are the sealed ones and fulfill all the safety standards for pregnant women, so it is safe to consume them.
- Last but not least is the homemade chicken salad, which is the safest because you can control the ingredients and cook chicken according to the standard method.
What Are The Risks Of Eating Chicken Salad During Pregnancy?
I have already talked in detail about how you should prepare your chicken salad and what you should avoid. However, if you do not follow the instructions and eat contaminated vegetables or deli Chicken, you may get infected with listeria.
Listeria monocytogenes is a bacteria found in food that is refrigerated for a long time. It doesn't affect the general population much, but pregnant women's children and immunocompromised people are affected ten times more easily.
This bacteria develops slowly in the body, and you can get symptoms as soon as two months after consuming something affected by the bacteria. Symptoms of listeria are
- Muscle and neck stiffness
- Vomiting and diarrhea, which may lead to dehydration
It is a serious infection, and if your baby gets infected, it may result in miscarriage, preterm birth, or the baby may be born with severe infections of the blood and brain, which in the long run may lead to conditions like paralysis or complete blindness.
What Is The Safest Type Of Chicken Salad In Pregnancy?
You crave chicken salad a lot during pregnancy; but after reading this, you may get worried about getting infected with listeria. In such a case, it is natural that you will question which type of chicken salad is completely safe during pregnancy.
Well, the simple answer to this question is homemade chicken salad.
You can go to a high-end restaurant and request them to make chicken salad according to your requirements, or you can buy a safe chicken salad such as a commercial once, but still, there will be a little risk of getting food-borne illnesses.
When making chicken salad at home, you can buy the ideal type of chicken and cook it according to the requirements. Also, you can buy fresh veggies and wash them properly. This will ensure that you are eating safe and giving yourself the nutrition to stay healthy during pregnancy.
Is Chicken Salad A Healthy Choice In Pregnancy?
Now you know that chicken salad is a safe choice during pregnancy if prepared carefully. However, is it a healthy choice to provide nutrition for you and your baby, or is it just a craving that doesn't benefit you?
Chicken salad is considered a healthy meal choice, and adding different types of vegetables makes it much healthier. Chicken is enriched with different nutrients and iron, making it healthy for pregnancy and giving you the essential nutrients to keep yourself and your baby healthy.
Is cold chicken safe in pregnancy?
No, it is not safe in pregnancy, and it may contain many bacteria, such as salmonella and E. coli, which can make you severely ill and affect your baby. To eat cold or deli chicken, ensure it is heated to optimum temperature before consumption.
Can you eat mayonnaise while pregnant?
No, you can't eat mayonnaise while pregnant. Anything that contains raw dairy products is dangerous for your baby and can make you extremely sick, so it is not a safe option, especially during pregnancy.
Pregnancy, no doubt, is one the most beautiful times of life for many mothers, but you have to be extra cautious in it because you are eating for two. You can have things that you can eat normally, but there are some special measures that you have to take before you eat them.
First, you have to ensure you are using fresh veggies cleaned thoroughly. After that, you must ensure that the chicken is cooked properly and you're not using any raw dairy products in your salad. If you follow all these precautions, nothing will go wrong, and you can eat chicken salad whenever you want.