Pregnant drinking by pool

Memorial Day ActivitiesWith an extra day off and some [hopefully] clear skies, Memorial Day is the unofficial start to the summer season. Many people choose to spend that extra day off recovering from a weekend of BBQs and pool parties while others take the Monday as a reason to get friends and family together for some great food and even greater company. Memorial Day is one of the safer holidays for pregnant women, but there are a few precautions to consider before taking part in some holiday fun.

Parties Friends are Throwing

If you’re headed off to a friend or family member’s house, you need to be careful with what you choose to eat and drink. Meats should be fully cooked and well-done. Eating rare meats is not acceptable during pregnancy as the bacteria present in undercooked meats could cause a deadly reaction. It is also important to stay away from lunch meats and unpasteurized cheeses. In terms of drinks, stick with water or another non-alcoholic beverages. Alcohol consumption during pregnancy is associated with fetal alcohol syndrome.

Parties You’re Throwing

If the Memorial Day party is taking place at your home – take it easy and let other family members and friends bring dishes to compliment a safe meat selection. If you’ve chosen fish as the meat of choice, try to eat a fish that is low in mercury and, as always, cook the fish completely before eating. Keep rare meats and well-done meats on separate serving trays and cook on opposite sides of the grill.

Outdoor Safety During Pregnancy

If you’ll be spending hours outside during Memorial Day weekend, apply sunscreen often and drink lots of water. Hydration is important during pregnancy. Sit in a shaded area whenever possible to keep your body temperature under control. Avoid bug sprays when outdoors for Memorial Day too. Bug sprays contain chemicals that can be harmful to baby. Instead, try applying a natural tea tree oil to keep mosquitoes and other biting bugs at bay.

Memorial Day is the unofficial start to summer and if you’re pregnant there is no reason you should not enjoy the time with friends and family. Before making any Memorial Day plans, be prepared with a pregnancy bag complete with an extra set of clothes, water, snacks, sunscreen and any medications you currently take under the care of your physician. Avoid bug sprays, rare meats, unpasteurized cheeses, alcoholic drinks and direct sunlight.