In pregnancy, a woman goes through several hormonal changes. Due to which she craves for sweet, and tangy flavored foods. Sweet delights such as cakes, ice-creams, pastries etc. are some of the unavoidable urges that most of the women feel in their pregnancy. But before you satiate your temptation, it is important to learn whether eating a cake is safe in pregnancy.
Is it Safe for a Pregnant Woman To Eat Cake?
Yes. Eating in moderation and in little amounts is safe for you as well your baby. As cakes do not provide nutrition, care should be taken that you don’t eat it often. Ensure that you consume a well-balanced diet that provides the necessary nutrients needed for the sound development of your baby.
You can view cakes as an empty calorie food that satisfied your hunger pangs for a short duration. Refined flour, and high sugar content in it can increase your risk of weight gain, saturated fats and gestational diabetes.
A slice of cake without icing is fine. You should refrain from cakes that comes loaded with layers of creams, cherries, chocolate chips, gems and other delicious toppings. It may look yummy and irresistible but not healthy for your pregnancy. So, you should drop the idea of eating such delectable treats for at least nine months of your pregnancy, or as advised by your doctor.
Is it safe to eat homemade cake?
No. Homemade cakes are not safe for consumption in pregnancy. This is because such cakes can contain variety of parasites, and bacteria in it that includes salmonella, toxoplasma, listeria, staphylococcus, and E.coli that can harm your baby.
Also, when a woman is pregnant, her immunity system reduces that can make her prone to bacterial infections. So, to prevent getting ill, it is advised not to consume homemade cakes in pregnancy. Remember that surrendering to your sweet tooth can take a toll not just on your health but your baby’s too. A balanced and nutritious diet will ensure a healthy and safe delivery of the baby.
As cakes are loaded with calories, they can make you overweight. It is advised to always regulate your calorie consumption in pregnancy. If you don’t, then reducing weight after delivery can be a real challenge for you. On special occasions, you can consume a small piece of it.
Some cakes also contain alcohol like rum in them. Such cakes are not conducive for the development of the baby. Alcohol is added for enhancement of the flavor of cakes. However, there is a possibility that it can cross the placenta (a tube that connected the mother and the unborn baby) and result in causing complications in your baby.
On consuming cakes that have high amounts of alcohol can even lead to birth defects, and premature delivery. Another reason, why you need to be cautious while eating cakes is that they may contain unhealthy supplements like artificial flavor enhancers etc. that can harm the baby.
Why expecting mothers crave a lot for sweet foods?
There are a few reasons why women feel an urge to eat sweet foods in their pregnancy:
• Hormonal effect: Pregnancy hormones like estrogen affect sense organs in the body. Due to which when a woman is pregnant, she experiences a different taste for the food. Specific foods such as cakes gratify the heightened senses of smell, or taste in a pregnant woman due to which she may feel intense craving for such foods.
• Emotional stress is another reason why women would want to eat comforting foods like cakes.
How Can I Pamper My Taste Buds In A Safe Way?
People who have sweet tooth, can enjoy cakes provided that they eat it in moderation and in a healthier way. Ensure that the cake you eat is devoid of icing, and fat content. Prefer not to use butter, preservatives and alcohol while preparing it. You can use several ingredients such as dark chocolate, nuts, fresh and frozen fruits, yogurt, eggs, etc. that are good for your pregnancy.
Prefer maple syrup and honey over sugar. It is a good practice to learn about the ingredients, and nutritional composition of the cake if it is not prepared by you. Eat it before evening as your activity level reduces after that time. Do not eat along with your meals. Eat it is as a separate meal such as an afternoon snack etc. Consult your doctor, or nutritionist to find out what is the permissible amount of cake that you can eat occasionally.
Also read: Can I eat pancakes during pregnancy
Pregnancy is all about consuming healthy foods and being safe, for yours as well as your baby’s health. It is quite natural to be attracted to a piece of delicious cake in pregnancy and it is alright to succumb to your temptation.
Eating cake occasionally and in low amounts won’t cause harm to your unborn. Check with the doctor before you eat anything during this phase. Choosing fresh fruits over cakes whenever you feel the urge for sweet foods is a healthy way to curb your unhealthy cravings.