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Safer Food Storage and Preparation

Safety in food preparation and storage is always important, especially to maintain good health during pregnancy. Avoiding food-borne illness requires prevention. You can protect yourself by practicing basic safe techniques of food handling at home and following some general food safety tips below.

Food Safety
To Do
  • Open egg cartons before purchasing and avoid cracked or leaking eggs.
  • Use only pasteurized dairy products and apple juice.
  • Buy dated foods only before the "sell by" or "use by" date and use within a few days at home.
  • Separate raw seafood, meat, and poultry into plastic bags while shopping and storing to prevent contamination of other food products.
  • Making shopping your last errand before going home and quickly refrigerate or re-warm items.
  • Store eggs in their original container and not in the door which is not as cold.
  • Store fresh meats, poultry, and fish on the bottom shelf of the refrigerator in plastic to avoid dripping on other foods.
  • Refrigerate or freeze foods in small containers so that it cools down faster.
  • Keep refrigerator at or below 40 F (4 C) and freezer at or below 0 degrees F (-18 C).
  • Wash hands, utensils, counters, and cutting surfaces with hot soapy water to avoid contamination.
  • Thaw foods in the refrigerator.
  • Wash fresh vegetables and fruits well with water.
  • Store oils in a cool, dark location. Keep covered. Refrigerate if possible. Buy only small amounts you can use within a two to three months.
  • Cook vegetables as quickly as possible and use as little fluid as you can.
  • Cook vegetables by microwaving, steaming, or stir-frying
  • Internal temperatures of foods during cooking should reach the following:
    • red meats: 140 F(60 C)
    • poultry: 165 F(74 C)
    • eggs: cook until white and yolk are firm and dry
    • fish: until flaky
    • reheat all foods to 165 F (74 C)
  • Stir foods reheated in microwave often to allow even cooking.
Avoid or Limit
  • Avoid raw or undercooked meats, poultry, or seafood such as sushi, oysters, and clams.
  • Soft mold cheeses such as brie or camembert.
  • Don't thaw foods on the counter or in the sink at room temperature.
  • Use separate cutting boards for animal and plant products.
  • Do not wash eggs as this may cause bacteria on the outside shell to get inside the egg.
  • If food smells or looks spoiled, always throw it out.
  • Fried, grilled and barbecued. Move racks or grills away from the heat sources, cook more slowly, and wrap food in foil.
  • Avoid overcooking or adding lots of water to vegetables. This dilutes nutrients.
  • Processed, salt-cured, smoked, nitrite-cured meats and foods. When you can, buy fresh.

Not all exercises or diets are suitable for everyone. Before you begin this program, you should have permission from your doctor to participate in vigorous exercise and change of diet. If you feel discomfort or pain when you exercise, do not continue. The instructions and advice presented are in no way intended as a substitute for medical counseling. The creators, producers, participants and distributors of this site disclaim any liability or loss in connection with the exercise and advice provided here.

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