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    A Mom-to-Be's Handbook to Safely Savoring Momos in Pregnancy

    Food Cravings

    A Mom-to-Be's Handbook to Safely Savoring Momos in Pregnancy

    Updated on 6 March 2024

    During pregnancy, it is essential to maintain a healthy diet to ensure the well-being of both the mother and the baby. However, expectant mothers often find themselves wondering about the safety of certain foods, such as momos. Momos, a popular delicacy originating from Nepal and Tibet, are dumplings filled with a variety of ingredients. But is it safe to consume momos in pregnancy? Let's find out.

    Can we eat momos during pregnancy?

    While momos can be a delicious treat, it is important to exercise caution when consuming them during pregnancy. The primary concern lies in the hygiene and preparation of the momos. Most momo vendors operate in street food stalls, where hygiene standards may not be as stringent as in a restaurant setting. Improperly cooked or contaminated momos can pose a risk of foodborne illnesses, which can be particularly harmful to pregnant women.

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    Reasons to avoid momos during pregnancy

    Here are some reasons why it’s better to stay away from momos or dumplings during pregnancy:

    1. Risk of foodborne illnesses

    Momos purchased from unhygienic or unregulated street food stalls can be a breeding ground for bacteria and other pathogens. Consuming contaminated momos can lead to foodborne illnesses such as salmonella or listeriosis, which can have serious consequences for both the mother and the baby.

    2. Excess sodium content

    Momos often contain a high amount of sodium, which can contribute to water retention and high blood pressure. During pregnancy, it is important to monitor sodium intake to avoid complications such as preeclampsia.

    3. Lack of nutritional value

    While momos can be a satisfying snack, they lack the essential nutrients needed during pregnancy. Expectant mothers require a well-balanced diet comprising of proteins, vitamins, and minerals, which may not be adequately provided by momos.

    4. Potential allergens

    The fillings of momos can include various ingredients such as meat, seafood, or vegetables. If the expectant mother has any known allergies to these ingredients, consuming momos can trigger allergic reactions, which can be harmful to both her and the baby.

    5. Unregulated ingredients

    When purchasing momos from street food stalls, the quality and origin of the ingredients used may not be known. This lack of regulation can increase the risk of consuming ingredients that are not safe for consumption during pregnancy.

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    Precautions to follow while eating momos in pregnancy

    If an expectant mother still wishes to indulge in momos during her pregnancy, it is crucial to follow certain precautions to minimize any potential risks. By taking the following precautions, one can ensure a safer consumption of momos:

    1. Choose reliable food establishments

    Opt for momos from reputable restaurants or food establishments that prioritize hygiene and food safety. This reduces the risk of consuming contaminated momos.

    2. Ensure proper cooking

    Make sure the momos are cooked thoroughly, with the fillings reaching a safe temperature. This helps eliminate any harmful bacteria or pathogens that may be present.

    3. Avoid raw or undercooked fillings

    If you prefer momos with meat or seafood fillings, ensure that they are cooked well-done. Raw or undercooked meat and seafood can harbor bacteria and parasites that pose a risk during pregnancy.

    4. Practice good personal hygiene

    Before consuming momos, always wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water. This helps prevent the transfer of bacteria from your hands to the momos and subsequently into your body.

    5. Moderation is key

    While it may be tempting to indulge in a large quantity of momos, it is important to remember that moderation is key. Consuming excessive amounts of momos can lead to an imbalance in nutrition and increase the risk of potential health issues.

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    5 healthy ways to enjoy momos at home during pregnancy

    If you prefer to enjoy momos in the comfort and safety of your own home, there are several healthy alternatives to consider. By making a few modifications, you can create delicious and nutritious momos suitable for your pregnancy diet:

    1. Choose lean protein fillings

    Instead of using fatty meats, opt for lean protein sources such as chicken or tofu. This reduces the overall fat content while still providing a good source of protein.

    2. Incorporate a variety of vegetables

    Load your momos with a variety of colorful and nutrient-rich vegetables. This adds essential vitamins and minerals to your diet, promoting a healthier pregnancy.

    3. Experiment with whole wheat or alternative flours

    Replace the traditional refined flour wrappers with whole wheat or alternative flours such as almond or quinoa flour. This increases the fiber content and provides a healthier carbohydrate option.

    4. Steam instead of deep-frying

    Instead of deep-frying the momos, opt for steaming them. Steaming retains more nutrients and reduces the overall fat content of the dish.

    5. Serve with a side of nutritious dip

    Instead of opting for high-sodium or calorie-rich dips, prepare a nutritious dip using yogurt, herbs, and spices. This adds flavor and provides additional nutrients.

    The Bottomline

    While momos can be a tempting treat, it is important for expectant mothers to prioritize their health and the health of their baby. Consuming momos in pregnancy from reliable sources and following necessary precautions can help reduce the risks associated with their consumption. Remember, a healthy and balanced diet is crucial for a safe and enjoyable pregnancy journey.


    1. Chakrabarti S, Chakrabarti A. (2019). Food taboos in pregnancy and early lactation among women living in a rural area of West Bengal. J Family Med Prim Care.

    2. Hu Z, Tylavsky FA, Kocak M, Fowke JH, Han JC, Davis RL, LeWinn KZ, Bush NR, Sathyanarayana S, Karr CJ, Zhao Q. (2020). Effects of Maternal Dietary Patterns during Pregnancy on Early Childhood Growth Trajectories and Obesity Risk: The CANDLE Study. Nutrients.

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    Written by

    Anupama Chadha

    Anupama Chadha, born and raised in Delhi is a content writer who has written extensively for industries such as HR, Healthcare, Finance, Retail and Tech.

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