Monday, February 25, 2008

What is safe, really?

I have been so sick lately with a cold and I’ve been thinking how in the world would I get through the day without any cold medicine like a good pregnant woman should! There are so many medicines that are on the “NO NO” list when you’re pregnant. Some women barely take a Tylenol, but others freely chug Nyquil… Where is the even ground? What can we “safely” take to relieve just one more thing that is making us tired, or sick, or crabby?

I’ve done some light reading and all books point me to ask my doctors about any medication I would want to take. That will be my first conversation that I have with Dr. Purdue (who I completely adore – more on her later). What’s safe to take, and what’s not? I’ll probably opt for staying as medication free as possible. That’s my goal anyway.

And food… there is a whole set of nutritional guidelines to follow on the road to conception and pregnancy. The first and hardest for me was to limit caffeine. Can you believe it!? Me – who received numerous gift cards to Star-Bucks this holiday… and obviously have a caffeine habit… I have successfully limited myself to one cup of coffee a day. And if I really need it, I’ll have a caffeinated soda in the afternoon. I’m so proud of myself. I used to think that caffeine ruled my life! I like this feeling of being in control!

The sad part is limiting my favorite foods - no sushi, which really sucks because Frank has actually grown to really like it! I’m sure there are things I can have, cooked rolls and tempura, but it won’t be the same. I also have to limit certain sea foods – only one tuna salad once a week and certain other fish is off limits completely because of their mercury level. And I stopped that a while a go because I learned mercury is stored in fat for many, many weeks. And since I have a lot of free storage places… I cut that out right away.

I have to be sure I eat fully cooked meats (medium-well! Yuck!) and no unpasteurized or soft cheeses. This includes my beloved blue and brie cheeses! I’ve also heard, not from a reliable source so I’ll confirm this with my doctor, that I’ll need to avoid artificial sweeteners. Now, does that include aspartame, aka Splenda? Or did that warning only apply to vast amounts of NutraSweet?

How things change – my mom used to drink Dr. Pepper and Tab like it was going out of style when she was pregnant with me and I turned out just fine. But new research has proven good reasons for the limitations.


erin said...

Hi, Rebecca!!
Thanks for stopping by.
I learned that basically NOTHING is safe during pregnancy, but you have to make good choices.
For instance, almost all cold and flu medicine is off limits--there's not much you can do there. But what about the occasional coffee? All things (except drugs and alcohol!) in moderation, right? If you tried to stick 100% to the yes / no list, you'd drive yourself crazy and be miserable!
Follow your doctor's advice and you'll do just fine!

erin said...

p.s. A medium-well steak for your anniversary dinner with your hubby just isn't the same. Believe me, I know.