Can Watermelon Cause Miscarriage?

Can watermelon cause miscarriage if eaten during pregnancy? This is an important question for pregnant women, as many often crave this sweet and juicy fruit.  Scientific research has not found any evidence that eating watermelon can cause a pregnancy loss. In fact, eating watermelon can provide numerous health benefits for both pregnant women and their unborn child. Therefore, it is safe to say that consuming moderate amounts of watermelon while pregnant is perfectly safe and a great addition to a healthy diet.  

The list of foods a pregnant woman should avoid can seem quite lengthy at times. It can make you question whether certain types of even seemingly healthy foods are safe. Rest assured that watermelon is not on the list of foods pregnant women should regularly avoid.  You can safely add it to the list of fruits you can enjoy during your pregnancy!  The foods to avoid typically include raw shellfish, energy drinks, unpasteurized dairy products, raw sprouts, deli meats, and some soft cheeses. Other foods to avoid inclue raw eggs, raw meat, and pre-packaged fresh fruits and salads.

These types of food should be avoided in order to reduce your risk of developing things like food poisoning or foodborne illness, such as a listeria infection. Listeria bacteria can cause issues with your unborn baby, including miscarriage, premature birth, and stillbirth.  Though this may seem like a long list, there are still a wide variety of healthy and delicious foods for you to enjoy during your pregnancy.

If you ever have questions about foods you should avoid as an expecting mother, it is always a good idea to reach out to your healthcare provider.

A woman sits on the ground holding a slice of watermelon.  She is taking a bite out of a piece in her hand.

Types of Watermelon

When most people think of watermelon, they think of the classic red-fleshed fruit. However, there are numerous varieties of watermelon. Some common types include seedless watermelons, yellow-fleshed watermelons, and mini watermelon. Each type has a unique flavor profile and nutrient content. The average size of a watermelon usually ranges between 5 to 15 pounds, but some types can be even bigger or smaller. Watermelons come in an array of colors, from vibrant red to orange to bright yellow.  Each variety of watermelon also contains different amounts of nutrients for your and your unborn baby.

The types and varieties of watermelon will have different tastes, textures, and colors. Some are sweeter than others and some may be more firm or juicy. The sweetness of a watermelon is determined by its sugar content and how ripe it is. The riper the watermelon, the higher its sugar content and the sweeter it will taste.  All the different types of watermelon also contain the healthy nutrients you need to help grow your healthy baby!

No matter what type of watermelon you choose to eat, you can make it a part of your healthy pregnancy.

Benefits of Eating Watermelon During Pregnancy

Watermelon can be enjoyed no matter which trimester you are in during your pregnancy.  It is lower in calories and full of essential vitamins and minerals such as vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin C, potassium, magnesium, and folate. It contains high amounts of vitamin C, which helps to keep the immune system healthy during pregnancy. Watermelon is also a good source of folate.  Folic acid helps prevent birth defects such as spinal cord and neural tube defects.  Magnesium is important for building strong bones and for regulating blood glucose levels. All of these nutrients are essential for having a healthy pregnancy.

Additionally, it is rich in lycopene which has been shown to reduce the risk of developing preeclampsia, a condition that can cause high blood pressure in pregnant women.  Consuming watermelon is a great way to stay hydrated during pregnancy as it is contains a high water content.  

Amino acids are important for healthy development of the baby during pregnancy. Watermelon is a particularly good source of arginine, an amino acid which helps to reduce stress hormones and regulate blood pressure levels.

Watermelon may even help with some of the common symptoms during the first trimester of pregnancy.  Eating this fruit in moderation may possibly help to reduce muscle cramps and morning sickness.  Consuming it during the second trimester can help to maintain healthy blood glucose levels. During the third trimester it may help to keep your energy levels up and reduce constipation.

Watermelon can be the perfect choice for a snack if you are craving sugar or junk food.  It has a sweet flavour and can be enjoyed in a variety of ways.  Though it has a high sugar content, it is a natural form and does not have added sugars. This makes it a better choice than processed foods or foods with a high amount of added sugar.

Risks of Eating Watermelon During Pregnancy

Although eating watermelon is generally safe for pregnant women, there are certain risks to consider. Eating too much watermelon can cause gastric issues and stomach discomfort due to its high levels of fiber. It is important to note that watermelons grown in the United States may contain pesticides and other chemicals which can be harmful if consumed in large quantities.

Be sure to always wash your watermelon before eating it to avoid food poisioning and ingesting any harmful bacteria or contaminants. Thoroughly washing all fruit is always the safest way  to consume them while pregnant.

Additionally, keep in mind that adding sugar or salt will increase the calorie content of the fruit, which may not be beneficial for pregnant women.

If you are allergic, you should always avoid eating it in case you have an allergic reaction. It is not worth the risk to you or your developing fetus to risk an allergic reaction. If you develop any unusual symptoms after eating watermelon, contact your healthcare provider right away. 

Whole watermelons sit in rows inside green crates.

Are There Any Fruits To Avoid During Pregnancy?

Though watermelon is safe to consume while pregnant, there are some fruits that should generally be avoided.  Unripe papaya should be avoided because it contains a type of latex that can cause uterine contractions.  Premature contractions during early pregnancy can potentially lead to miscarriages or preterm labor. 

Green or unripe mangoes should also be avoided due to their high content of tannins, which can cause nausea and vomiting.  Wild apples should be avoided as they may contain a parasite called cymothoa exigua which can cause food poisoning. 

Additionally, it is important to avoid consuming unpasteurized fruit juices or smoothies in order to reduce the risk of food poisoning or other illnesses caused by bacteria. Lastly, it is important to avoid drinking large amounts of fruit juice as this can cause an increase in sugar levels and can contribute to the risk of developing gestational diabetes or causing other issues with your blood sugar.

It is important to keep in mind that some fruits have the potential to carry harmful bacteria if not properly washed before eating. These include apples, cherries, grapes, and strawberries. Be sure to always thoroughly wash all types of fruits before consuming them. 

Ways to Incorporate Watermelon Into Your Diet

There are a variety of ways for you to enjoy the delicious taste of watermelon as part of your balanced diet during pregnancy.  Your pregnancy diet should also include plenty of fruits and vegetables, lean meats, and whole grains.  It is also important to make sure you drink plenty of water and to take your prenatal vitamin to help support your growing baby.  

Watermelon is usually available at your local grocery store during summer months. When purchasing, select melons that are heavy for their size and have yellow spots with no soft areas.  Cut the flesh off the rind and store in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to five days.

Here are some ways you can incorporate watermelon into your diet and take advantage of all the important nutrients it has to offer.

  • Simply eat the fruit as is. Cut it up and sprinkle it with a bit of salt or lime juice for extra flavor.
  • Add it to salads, smoothies, and other dishes. Make a fresh summer salad by combining cubed watermelon, cucumbers, tomatoes and a light vinaigrette dressing.
  • Combine with other fruits, such as citrus fruits, other types of melon, or other summer fruit, to create a fruit salad.
  • Drink a glass of fresh watermelon juice.  Keep in mind that fruit juices should be used in moderation, as they can be quite high in sugar.  If you are at a higher risk of gestational diabetes, you may want to avoid fruit juice altogether.
  • Try freezing pieces of watermelon and using them as ice cubes in your drinks.
  • You can get creative with recipes that include watermelon such as watermelon salsa, watermelon sorbet, and even watermelon ice cream.
  • Make a refreshing summer beverage like a virgin watermelon margarita or virgin watermelon mojito.
  • Use watermelon in desserts like pies or tarts.  Watermelon desserts are both sweet and refreshing.
  • Grill slices of the fruit and enjoy with a sprinkle of sea salt. 
  • Blend up a watermelon agua fresca for an afternoon snack.  This involves ingredients like  watermelon, lime juice and honey. 
  • Try making a cooling watermelon-cucumber gazpacho soup. 
Watermelon slices sit on a brown surface.  A blue and white striped towel sits on the top of the surface above the slices.

Other Ways to Use Watermelon During Pregnancy

Watermelon can be used in other ways during pregnancy aside from eating it. Pregnant mothers often experience skin changes that can be treated with the cooling and hydrating properties of watermelon. The fruit makes a great facial mask and has anti-aging properties that help to keep your skin hydrated.  Make a mask by combining pureed watermelon with honey and using it as a facial mask.

Watermelon is also great for hair care. Make a watermelon hair mask by combining watermelon with olive oil. Apply to the scalp and hair as a nourishing treatment.  Leave on for about 20 minutes before rinsing out with warm water.

You can take advantage of the relaxing scent of watermelon to help reduce stress levels during pregnancy. It has a pleasant aroma that helps to relax your body and mind. You can also use the seeds to make watermelon seed oil, which is rich in vitamin E and fatty acids and can be used as a moisturizer or hair conditioner.

Aloe vera and watermelon work together to make a natural moisturizer that helps maintain healthy skin during pregnancy. This mixture can also be used as an after-shave lotion or deodorant. 

There are so many ways of incorporating watermelon into your daily life.  Find the option that fits best with your lifestyle.

Eating moderate amounts of watermelon during pregnancy is perfectly safe for both you and your baby’s health. It may even provide numerous health benefits for pregnant women, such as helping with common symptoms like leg cramps and nausea. Expectant mothers should make sure to consume only fresh, organic (if possible) watermelons with no added sugar or additives.  Be sure to always wash the fruit before consuming it and talk to your doctor or dietitian about ways to incorporate watermelon into a balanced pregnancy diet.  Be sure you are drinking lots of water and regularly taking your prenatal vitamin as well.  Additionally, it is important to talk to a doctor or health care provider if any concerns arise.  With careful monitoring and the right precautions, pregnant women can enjoy this sweet fruit as part of a healthy diet. 

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