can i eat beef jerky pregnant

It’s a common question asked by many expectant mothers: can you eat beef jerky when pregnant? The answer, according to medical professionals, is yes – in moderation. Beef jerky is a high-protein snack made from dried strips of lean cuts of meat, such as flank steak or sirloin.

Eating beef jerky during pregnancy isn’t a definitive yes or no; it depends on a couple things, the first being the type of jerky.

Some jerkies are fully dried and sold as shelf-stable, while other varieties might be sold in the refrigerated section of the grocery store. Those that are sold in the deli section are an easy no, because even though the meats are cooked and/or cured, the risk of bad bacteria growing on them is increased, as they are more likely to fall into what we call the ‘temperature danger zone’. This is basically a temperature range where bacteria are more likely to thrive.

The shelf-stable jerky is possibly safe to consume in moderation, but because there is some variability around the temperature it is dried/cooked at (depending on the brand), there is a potential risk of foodborne illness with this variety as well.

Jerky also tends to be very high in sodium and often contains nitrates/nitrites, which aren’t the greatest for your overall health anyway. The last thing you need to worry about managing while preparing for a baby is high blood pressure!

Eating beef jerky during pregnancy isn’t a definitive yes or no; it depends on a couple things, the first being the type of jerky.

Some jerkies are fully dried and sold as shelf-stable, while other varieties might be sold in the refrigerated section of the grocery store. Those that are sold in the deli section are an easy no, because even though the meats are cooked and/or cured, the risk of bad bacteria growing on them is increased, as they are more likely to fall into what we call the ‘temperature danger zone’. This is basically a temperature range where bacteria are more likely to thrive.

The shelf-stable jerky is possibly safe to consume in moderation, but because there is some variability around the temperature it is dried/cooked at (depending on the brand), there is a potential risk of foodborne illness with this variety as well.

Jerky also tends to be very high in sodium and often contains nitrates/nitrites, which aren’t the greatest for your overall health anyway. The last thing you need to worry about managing while preparing for a baby is high blood pressure!

Foodborne illness and toxoplasma

Although anyone can get sick with foodborne illness (aka food poisoning), your chances are higher because pregnancy can wreak havoc on the immune system. And as a result, your body may have difficulty fighting off bacteria that can make you sick.

This includes bacteria that causes illnesses like toxoplasma. Not only can you get sick, but your baby may be affected, too.

You’re probably thinking: Beef jerky isn’t raw, so what’s the big deal?

While it’s true that jerky isn’t raw, it’s also not cooked in the traditional sense.

Cooking meat at a high temperature helps kill bacteria that can make you sick. Jerky is dried meat, and the reality is, drying meat might not kill all bacteria. When you buy jerky at the store, you can’t be sure of the temperature it was dried at.

So each time you take a bite of jerky, you’re essentially gambling with your health.

Toxoplasmosis is a common infection, and in healthy people, it doesn’t usually cause serious problems. Some people don’t even realize they have the infection, especially since it can clear up on its own.

But since this illness can lead to birth defects, it’s important that you do what you can to avoid toxoplasmosis during pregnancy. This includes washing fruit and vegetables before eating, washing your hands after handling undercooked meat, and yes, avoiding beef jerky.

Want evidence-based health & wellness advice for fertility, pregnancy, and postpartum delivered to your inbox?Share via

Evidence-based health and wellness resources for fertility, pregnancy and postpartum.Share via

Eating beef jerky during pregnancy isn’t a definitive yes or no; it depends on a couple things, the first being the type of jerky.

Some jerkies are fully dried and sold as shelf-stable, while other varieties might be sold in the refrigerated section of the grocery store. Those that are sold in the deli section are an easy no, because even though the meats are cooked and/or cured, the risk of bad bacteria growing on them is increased, as they are more likely to fall into what we call the ‘temperature danger zone’. This is basically a temperature range where bacteria are more likely to thrive.

The shelf-stable jerky is possibly safe to consume in moderation, but because there is some variability around the temperature it is dried/cooked at (depending on the brand), there is a potential risk of foodborne illness with this variety as well.

Jerky also tends to be very high in sodium and often contains nitrates/nitrites, which aren’t the greatest for your overall health anyway. The last thing you need to worry about managing while preparing for a baby is high blood pressure!

It’s a common question asked by many expectant mothers: can you eat beef jerky when pregnant? The answer, according to medical professionals, is yes – in moderation. Beef jerky is a high-protein snack made from dried strips of lean cuts of meat, such as flank steak or sirloin.

FAQ

Is jerky safe to eat during pregnancy?

Bottom Line. Consuming beef jerky that is fully cooked and prepared in a USDA inspected facility while pregnant is completely safe. Your risks of foodborne illnesses become higher if you’re consuming homemade jerky or meats that are filled with added nitrates and aren’t fully cooked.

Are Slim Jims safe for pregnancy?

It might be worthwhile to lay off the Slim Jims during your pregnancy. Although these salty snacks are convenient and tasty, they are classified as a more heavily processed food item, which means they contain additives which might not be the best for a pregnant person and their growing baby.

Is it safe to eat beef while pregnant?

You can safely eat beef during pregnancy as long as it’s cooked thoroughly until it’s steaming hot with no trace of pink or blood. It’s not recommended to eat rare or undercooked beef1. Beef is a good source of protein during pregnancy and is recommended to be included as part of a healthy pregnancy diet.

Can you eat dry cured meat when pregnant?

There’s a small risk of getting toxoplasmosis if you eat raw and undercooked meat, which can cause miscarriage. Cured meats are not cooked, so they may have parasites in them that cause toxoplasmosis. Liver and liver products have lots of vitamin A in them. This can be harmful to an unborn baby.

Related Posts