Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Transatlantic Pregnancy Rules

Our child will be blessed with two passports and the ability to choose whether to support England (perhaps in football), or the US (the Olympics, I guess).

Similarly, as a transatlantic couple, we can choose whether to adhere to British or American pregnancy advice.

I'll be honest, I prefer the NHS advice to anything I've found yet in the US.

According to the American Pregnancy Association, no amount of alcohol is safe to consume during pregnancy. The rather more pragmatic NHS also advise you not to drink, but add 'if you do continue to drink, limit it to 1 or 2 units, once or twice a week'. That'll do nicely. A glass of wine on a Saturday night is enough to keep me happy.

US sites will tell you to avoid all deli meats, or 'lunch meats', as TLOML calls them. But the NHS advice is that the risk of listerosis is so minute, these meats should be considered safe to eat. So I can munch on some parma ham while I enjoy my glass of wine.

I found a lot of general statements banning blue-veined cheese and smoked fish in the US. But the NHS tells me stilton (since it is a hard cheese) is fine, and kippers aren't ruled out either.

Sadly on neither side of the Atlantic can I find any website written by medical professionals which will give me licence to eat raw oysters, sushi or steak tartare with gay abandon.

Still, the greatest pleasures in life are sometimes those we pursue without permission.
I mean, look at these oysters: big, plump and super fresh. So fresh they flinched when we squeezed lemon on them. Reader, I ate 'em. And didn't get food poisoning either.

Unfortunately for me, TLOML has watched too many episodes of One Born Every Minute lately and is now all about the low risk, safe pregnancy. He has declared a strict embargo on 'high risk' food and drink items. And me? Well, I'm a good wife. I do what my husband says. At least while he's watching...


  1. You are highly entertaining Katie! Love your blog updates very much x

  2. Why thank you Shazza! Glad you like x

  3. I never craved soft goats cheese except when pregnant. Never eat it now I can, of course. I had a friend who had her husband waiting in the delivery room with soft goats cheese and champagne.

  4. Is it extravagant to want a sushi chef on hand for the birth, Cumulus?