Can I eat eggs?
If you’re making your pancakes from scratch, you may have asked yourself the question – can I eat eggs during pregnancy?
The answer is yes, you can. Some eggs are produced under a food safety standard called the British Lion Code of Practice – you’ll notice a red lion stamped on the egg’s shell.
These eggs are considered very low risk for salmonella and are even safe to eat raw or partially cooked.
If they are not Lion Code, make sure they are thoroughly cooked to avoid the risk of salmonella food poisoning. This is unlikely to harm your baby, but it can give you a nasty bout of diarrhoea and vomiting.
If you’re going out to eat your pancakes (and why not?!) you can always ask the waiting staff if the eggs they use are Lion Code.
Keeping the pancake batter safe
There are a lot of mixed messages about how long you can keep pancake batter in the fridge for. To be on the safe side, try to finish the pancake batter in one sitting. Pancakes contain a lot of easily perishable ingredients, such as eggs and milk. If stored incorrectly, this can lead to the rise of parasites such as listeria. This is a rare infection, but it can cause problems for mother and baby in pregnancy.
If you’re keeping it simple and using ready-to-eat pancake batter, just make sure you store it as per the instructions on the box, so you know all the ingredients are safe.
I’ve eaten an undercooked pancake. Should I be worried?
Don’t panic! In most cases, nothing will happen. If you have an upset stomach in the hours after eating, then it is possible that they were undercooked or stored incorrectly. If this vomiting (and possibly diarrhoea) persists for more than 48 hours, then it is a good idea to go to your local maternity unit to make sure that you and baby are ok.
In severe cases of diarrhoea and vomiting, you may need to take fluids intravenously to rehydrate the body. This means having fluids through a needle or tube inserted into a vein. If this happens, tell the midwife or doctor that you had possible listeria exposure. They will do a blood test and if you test positive, you will be given a course of antibiotics (which are safe to take during pregnancy).
Morning sickness can affect women at any time of day but is often at its worst when you first wake up. If this is the case, it may be best to save your pancakes for lunch or dinner time. You could even have a stash ready as a snack – sometimes it can help to eat little and often.
You may also find it helpful to avoid the sweet toppings, such as syrup or chocolate.
What toppings can I try?
Now’s the time to eat a healthy, balanced diet, so why not try some sliced banana, orange segments or blueberries. You could also try going veggie – how about some spinach, grated courgette or sweet potato?