Can pregnant women eat honey? Yes, you can have honey, as long as the jar doesn’t say “raw” on it. If you’ve got an apple slice with peanut butter and honey in your hand right now, by all means, dig in!
While some mamas fear the risk of bacteria contamination, most honey is pasteurized. That means the chances of any problems arising from eating honey during pregnancy are very low.
Let’s take a look in more detail.
In this article: 📝
- Is honey safe to eat during pregnancy?
- Can you have pasteurized honey when pregnant?
- Is ginger and honey safe in pregnancy?
- Is honey good for pregnancy?
- What foods should pregnant women avoid?
- Can pregnant women eat honey? Final thoughts
Is honey safe to eat during pregnancy?
Honey is perfectly safe to eat during pregnancy. While it is known for sometimes containing bacterial spores, this is very rare. And your stomach and immune system are likely to be able to manage these bacteria, without any harm coming to you or your baby.
The question about honey during pregnancy usually comes down to the problem of botulism. Sometimes the bacteria in that lovely sweet stuff can cause illness when eaten by babies – a nasty illness called botulism that attacks their nerves and can, in some cases, be fatal.
While you can usually handle these bacteria, an infant can’t. That’s why it’s generally recommended not to give babies honey until they are over the age of one, when their immune systems are a little tougher.
Both you and baby are okay with honey during pregnancy. But if you’re worried, be sure to go for pasteurized honey.
Can you have pasteurized honey when pregnant?
Eating pasteurized honey gives you all the great things about honey without the (very small) risk of bacteria contamination. Pasteurized honey is honey that has been heated up to kill all the bacteria inside. The vast majority of honey you’ll find will be pasteurized.
Eating raw honey during pregnancy – i.e. the unpasteurized stuff – is where there is the slight risk. Raw honey is almost always well labeled, so it shouldn’t be hard to avoid.
Is ginger and honey safe in pregnancy?
Honey is safe, but what about ginger? Ginger has been found to help nausea and vomiting in pregnant women. So, that would seem to be a thumbs up.
However, in high doses ginger may raise the risk of miscarriage. Although there is not much evidence here, there is a (very small) chance – and one you should be aware of.
Small amounts of ginger are very unlikely to cause any problems.
Is honey good for pregnancy?
Let’s change things around a bit. Yep, honey might actually be positively good for you during pregnancy.
Why? Well, as long as you keep things pasteurized, you can benefit from some of honey’s benefits:
- It could help reduce allergies. Local honey contains local pollen, which can build immunity to hay fever.
- Eases heartburn. Honey’s thick sticky texture could keep acid down – preventing a very common symptom of pregnancy.
- It could help digestion. Some studies have shown that honey can aid symptoms of constipation.
- Soothes coughs and sore throat. While not a symptom associated with pregnancy, honey can help soothe discomfort in your throat and could help if you have a cold and need to avoid other OTC medications.
What foods should pregnant women avoid?
There are loads of foods people say women should avoid when they are pregnant. However, there are many fewer that you should definitely avoid 100%. These include raw meats and fish and unpasteurized cheeses.
Alcohol too should be kept to a pretty strict minimum. Doctors just aren’t sure there’s a safe limit you can drink.
Find out more about foods to avoid during pregnancy.
Can pregnant women eat honey? Final thoughts
Yes, pregnant women can eat honey – but it’s generally recommended that you stick to pasteurized options. While it can be dangerous for children under the age of one, for you it could even bring benefits.
More on pregnancy foods:
Can Pregnant Women Eat Cream Cheese?
Can Pregnant Women Eat Grapes?
Can Pregnant Women Eat Mushrooms?
Can Pregnant Women Eat Popcorn?
Can Pregnant Women Eat Feta Cheese?
Can You Eat Cheesecake When Pregnant?
Can You Eat Goat’s Cheese When Pregnant?
Can You Eat Mozzarella When Pregnant?
Is Oatmeal Good for Pregnancy?
Can You Eat Mayo While Pregnant?
Cinnamon During Pregnancy: Can You Eat It?
Can You Eat Pomegranate During Pregnancy?
Can You Eat Hummus While Pregnant?
Can You Eat Cherries While Pregnant?
Can You Eat Seaweed While Pregnant?