Eating Cantaloupe During Pregnancy – Safe or Not?
Eating a healthy and nutritious diet is very important throughout the pregnancy, and hence, fruits and vegetables form a core part of the pregnancy diet. Melons are the best fruits to have during summers as they give a cooling effect and are low in calories. Muskmelon or Kharbuja as they are normally called is a superfood rich in various nutrients essential for pregnancy and low on calories. There are many other names of muskmelon such as Cantaloupe, sweet melon and rockmelon. Read here to know the various benefits and side effects of eating kharbuja in pregnancy along with its nutritional value and other interesting facts.
Pregnancy is a period when you have to be extremely cautious about what you eat and what you should avoid. It is not just about you; it is about the baby as well, and anything you eat directly impacts your baby too.
If you had enjoyed eating cantaloupe and used to savour it before you were pregnant, is it still safe during pregnancy? Let’s help you out! To know if cantaloupe during pregnancy is advisable, read the post below.
What is Cantaloupe?
Cantaloupe is a melon look-a-like fruit, which is sweet. It goes by other names as well like Kharbuja, Persian melon, mush melon, rockmelon, and muskmelon.
Is it Safe to Eat Cantaloupe During Pregnancy:
Cantaloupe is a powerhouse of various nutrients essential for pregnancy and eating muskmelon has considerable benefits in pregnancy. Eating muskmelon by itself is very safe during pregnancy. However, there are a bacteria called Listeria that is sometimes found on the outer surface of muskmelon, which if not washed properly, can sometimes get inside and cause severe complications in the pregnancy. This is the reason that sometimes people advise to avoid eating muskmelon during pregnancy. Muskmelon, in itself, does not pose any harm to the pregnancy.
- Pregnancy demands that you add a lot of fruits and vegetables in your diet, to supply with all the necessary nutrients. These nutrients are obligatory to the proper development of the baby.
- Cantaloupe is known for its rich nutritional values. While most doctors will give a green signal to its consumption, one has to be careful before eating cantaloupes. Cantaloupe as the fruit will not harm you or your unborn baby, but certain bacteria which grow on its outer surface may be a cause for concern to both the mother and the child.
- The bacteria can cause serious ailments. Thus, you should thoroughly consult your doctor and ask if it is safe to consume cantaloupe during pregnancy or is it advisable to give it up for a few months.
Nutritional Values of Kharbuja in Pregnancy:
The following are the nutrition found in consuming 100g of Kharbuja.
- Energy 34Kcal
- Carbohydrates 8.6g
- Protein 0.84g
- Fat 0.19g
- Sugar 7.86g
- Dietary Fiber 0.9g
- Thiamin (B1) 0.017mg
- Riboflavin (B2) 0.026mg
- Niacin (B3) 0.734mg
- Pantothenic Acid (B5) 0.105mg
- Pyridoxine (B6) 0.072mg
- Folates 21ug
- Choline 7.6mg
- One Vitamin A 3382IU
- 2nd Vitamin E 0.05mg
- Vitamin C 36.7mg
- Vitamin K 2.5mcg
- Potassium 267mg
- Sodium 1mg
- Copper 41ug
- Calcium 9mg
- Phosphorous 15mg
- Iron 0.21mg
- Zinc 0.18mg
- Magnesium 12mg
- Manganese 0.041mg
Muskmelon Benefits in Pregnancy:
Muskmelon is a natural superfood very healthy for pregnant ladies. The following are the various benefits of Kharbuja in pregnancy
1. Keeps Weight Gain During Pregnancy In Check:
Cantaloupes have very few calories and thus do not add to the weight during pregnancy, keeping you fit and healthy. It makes me feel full without increasing your weight, which is exactly what is necessary and desirable by you. You can enjoy this delicious fruit without worry regarding obesity and your shape!
See More: is asparagus good for pregnancy
2. Rich Source Of Vitamin A:
Cantaloupe contains Vitamin A in abundance. Vitamin A converts the food to beta-carotene, which is extremely crucial to the baby’s development of vision. Also, it prevents any congenital disabilities in the baby and supports the healthy growth of the baby’s heart, lungs, kidneys, and bones.
3. Rich Source of Potassium:
The nutrient potassium is an excellent checker of blood pressure, and cantaloupe is rich in potassium as well. This makes it a blood pressure regulator, which is a must during the pregnancy months.
4. Rich in Folic Acid and other B-complex Vitamins:
Apart from the nutrients mentioned above, Cantaloupe is loaded with other nutrients like folic acid, B-complex vitamins such as B1, B3, B5, and B6. Folic Acid, in particular, aids in preventing the neural tube defects in the baby.
5. Prevents Anemia:
During pregnancy, there is a constant need for oxygen supply to the baby, and hence, the blood flow should be very good. The high quantum of iron present in muskmelon ensures that the haemoglobin level is maintained and the mother does not become anaemic.
6. Phosphorous helps in Muscle Contraction:
The phosphorus helps to contract the active muscles which aid in labour. Also, it helps in blood clotting, nerve conduction, tissue repair, and heart function.
7. Anticoagulant Properties:
Muskmelons have ample anticoagulants that act as blood thinners and aid in preventing the formation of any types of blood clots.
8. Fights Infection:
The rich source of Vitamin C increases the immunity of the body and helps fight common infections such as cough, cold, flu, etc. during pregnancy. Also, beta-carotene helps to fight various life-threatening diseases, including cancer.
9. Treats Constipation:
The high fluid content in the muskmelon help to keep the body hydrated and prevent the loss of electrolyte from the body. Also, the coolant property helps in maintaining the temperature inside the body and keeps the acid reflux in check. This provides a considerable relief in constipation, which is a major issue during pregnancy.
10. Improves Digestion:
The fibrous nature of muskmelon improves the digestive system and keeps various digestive issues such as heartburn, gas, acidity, etc. at bay.
Side Effects of Sweet Melon During Pregnancy:
There are no side effects in the consumption of muskmelon fruit. However, the following are the possibilities if the fruits are not washed properly before consumption.
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1. The Risk of Listeriosis:
Listeriosis is a type of food poisoning which occurs when food has been contaminated by the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes (L. monocytogenes). Listeriosis during pregnancy can result in stillbirth, miscarriage and premature birth. It may also cause infections and numerous birth defects in the newborn child.
The listeria bacteria is found in the rind of the cantaloupe (outer cover) and not inside the fruit. However, if the fruit is not washed properly, then there are chances that this bacteria can travel inside and cause listeriosis.
2. Pesticide Residues:
Cantaloupes retain most of the pesticides that are used on them in the farms. This may cause allergies due to the sensitivity of the body during pregnancy.
See More: strawberries during pregnancy
Safety Methods to Consume Muskmelon in Pregnancy:
Muskmelon by itself is a very safe and nutritious fruit for consumption during pregnancy. One needs just to be a little cautious, and we can easily avoid the possible side effects. The following are the safest methods to undertake before consuming muskmelon for pregnant ladies.
- Soak the muskmelon in the water at least 2 hours before cutting it. This will help in getting rid of any listeriosis bacteria as well as pesticides that maybe they’re on the surface of the muskmelon.
- Wash the rind of the muskmelon nicely under the running tap water.
- Wash your hands properly before cutting the washed muskmelon.
- Eat the muskmelon immediately after cutting and avoid refrigerating the fruit for a long time.
Muskmelon is a very healthy and safe fruit for consumption during pregnancy. One needs to be a little careful in handling the fruit, especially during pregnancy, which will eliminate the chances of catching the infection. The nutritional value of muskmelon is so high you can hardly afford to miss adding it to your diet. However, kindly consult your doctor about consuming it during the pregnancy if you are allergic to the fruit.
Frequently Asked Questions and Answers:
Q1: Is Cantaloupe Seeds Safe to Eat During Pregnancy?
Ans: Cantaloupe seeds are not only safe but also very healthy and good for pregnancy. The seeds help in eliminating any type of intestinal worms from the body. It also helps in relieving from the stress. Thus Kharbuja is good for pregnancy, including seeds.
Q2: Can I Drink Musk Melon Juice During Pregnancy?
Ans: Musk melon juice is equally good and healthy to consume in pregnancy as is its juicy fruit. One can safely drink muskmelon juice during pregnancy.
Q3: Eating Muskmelon During Early Pregnancy Safe or Not?
Ans: Eating muskmelon during early pregnancy is absolutely safe. In fact, the folic acid and other vitamins present in the muskmelon helps in preventing any neural birth defects in the baby, which is most common during the early pregnancy.