Honey is a safe and delicious food to enjoy, even when you’re pregnant.

putting honey on a bowl of peaches while pregnant-1Share on Pinterest
Justin Paget/Getty Images

Nutrition is a main concern when you are pregnant. You may wonder if it’s honey is a good option.

Honey is safe to eat during pregnancy. Honey comes in different forms and can be pasteurized, unpasteurized, or raw. All are considered safe to eat during pregnancy.

Yes, honey is safe to eat during pregnancy. You may have heard that honey is not safe for babies under 1 year of age. Some things are not safe for babies and pregnant people, but honey is not one of them.

The risk for babies is that a type of bacteria called Clostridium botulinum may end up in honey. Clostridium botulinum can be present in the environment. It releases toxins that can be harmful to babies.

In adults, pregnant or not, the digestive system can destroy the bacteria that causes botulism, so it’s no longer a risk.

Pasteurized honey is heated to destroy any microorganisms, including yeast.

All types of honey have a long shelf life, but pasteurization helps them last even longer. Pasteurizing honey also creates a smoother product that resists crystallization.

Honey hasn’t specifically been studied for health benefits during pregnancy. Other research has explored the potential health benefits of honey.

Honey contains antioxidants, has antibacterial and antiviral properties, and can help with healing.

Unpasteurized honey contains more antioxidants compared to pasteurized. Some are destroyed with high heat.

There’s no specific guideline about how much honey is safe during pregnancy. It’s important to eat a balanced diet to get a variety of foods and nutrients. You can continue to include honey in your diet just like before you were pregnant.

If you have gestational diabetes, you may have to make changes to how you eat.

Honey can be part of a balanced eating pattern. Honey breaks down into simple sugars, just like other carbohydrates and sugar sources. It will raise your blood sugar in a similar way to other types of sugar.

If you’re counting carbohydrates to help manage gestational diabetes, honey contains 17 grams of carbohydrates per tablespoon – that’s around 5 grams per teaspoon.

When you eat honey, try to balance it with a source of protein or fiber to reduce the effect on your blood sugar.

Honey is considered safe during pregnancy. Honey has a pretty long shelf life, but it’s still smart to look it over.

If your honey smells funky or has any areas of mold or discoloration, don’t eat it. Those are good rules for anyone, pregnant or not.

Is raw honey safe to eat during pregnancy?

Yes, even raw honey is safe. Raw honey is the least processed form of honey. Raw honey comes right from the hive. It only goes through a simple filter to remove any bits of debris. It is not heated at all.

Can I have honey for a cold during pregnancy?

Yes. Honey can help soothe a sore throat when you have a cold. Some medications aren’t safe during pregnancy, but honey is a safe home remedy during pregnancy.

How do I know if honey is pasteurized?

When you buy honey, the package usually states whether it’s pasteurized. Pasteurized honey tends to be smoother and milder in flavor. Both pasteurized and unpasteurized honey are safe to eat.

When can I feed my baby honey?

Honey is safe for your baby after they turn 1 year old.

At that age, if there are any spores of the bacteria that cause botulism, their digestive system is mature enough to destroy them. Clostridium botulinum spores can be present even in pasteurized honey.

Honey is safe to eat during pregnancy. You can buy honey pasteurized, unpasteurized, or raw. All forms are safe. It’s tasty, contains antioxidants, and has antibacterial and antiviral properties.

Honey is not safe for babies under one year of age due to the risk of botulism. Even during pregnancy, there is no risk of botulism from honey.