The title seems like a total misnomer; of course pregnant people can eat ice cream—isn’t it the standard mum-to-be craving (albeit with a couple crazy additions? Also, what is the nine month long wait deprived of so many mouth pleasures without at least the succour of soft serve? The truth, however, is that ice cream is not always a good—or safe—idea for preggo indulgence. Here’s why.
Ice cream falls into three categories, and not all are created equal in terms of food safety.
According to the NHS, branded ice creams bought from the supermarket typically contain pasteurised ingredients and so are considered safe from salmonella poisoning.
‘Mr Whippy’ ice creams from vans and kiosks are a no-go as the machines are potential carriers of listeria, says Dr Rana Conway, pregnancy nutritionist.
The third kind is the homemade variety, and as most recipes require raw egg, you may want to avoid due to salmonella risk—unless your eggs have the British Lion stamp of approval.
And if you’re sticking to the safe-to-eat processed ice creams, there’s still one more lump of salt in the wound: “Premium ice creams are high in saturated fat and sugar so it’s best not to eat them too often,” explains Dr Conway. Still, there’s always frozen yoghurt—Conway suggests: “make your own by blending fruit and yogurt and popping it in the freezer. Bananas work particularly well as they taste sweet and provide a nice creamy texture.”