How to safely handle food when you're pregnant

Posted on 23 July 2012

If you're pregnant, you've likely researched the types of food you should avoid during those nine months, but you may not have thought about the best ways to handle the cuisine you make. You should know, however, that how you prepare your meals  is just as important as the types of food you should avoid, as it can help ensure the health and safety of both you and your baby.

To learn about the safest way to handle whatever you cook, follow the tips below from

1) Wash your hands
This may seem like common sense, but many pregnant women don't bother to cleanse their hands with soap and warm water before they start cooking. Forgetting to wash your hands can spread nasty bacteria from all sorts of germ-infested places to your food.

2) Handle meat last
When cooking, first chop and cook all your veggies. Handle the meat and other poultry last. It's never a good idea to cut up chicken and use the knife to dice and peel your carrots, because it's one of the easiest ways to spread harmful bacteria found in raw meat, like E-coli.

3) Don't wash off the meat
You may think that rinsing off that tasty filet mignon is the easiest way to rid it of germs. But, it's important to note that this isn't the case. According to, you'll just spread bacteria around your sink, knives and other prep areas.

4) Get rid of leftovers
That leftover meatloaf may be tasty, but it's a good idea to get rid of food that you've cooked that contains meat after it's four days old. Keeping it in your refrigerator and eating it after that period puts you and your bun in-the-oven at risk for being exposed to food that contains bacteria.

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