The facts! Is biltong safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding? 5 top tips

We all know there are certain foods that should be avoided during pregnancy. Is biltong safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding? This is a grey area with no clear cut answer, but I’m going to outline the facts and provide a few tips for clarity.

There is plenty of advice out there about what food to avoid, some of these include high-mercury fish, undercooked or raw fish, especially shellfish, undercooked, raw and processed meat, raw eggs…the list goes on. If you like to see a full list check out this blog on 11 Foods and Beverages to Avoid During Pregnancy.

Is biltong safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding

When considering if biltong safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding you need to consider the facts and risks. Eating undercooked or raw meat is a NO-NO. It can increase your risk of infection from several bacteria or parasites, including Toxoplasma, E. coli, Listeria and Salmonella. Most bacteria is found on the surface of whole pieces of meat but other bacteria may linger inside the meat. Some meats are safer than others. Pork is particularly high risk while beef is lower risk, for example.

The good news is that biltong is not raw meat, it is cured. But, to be clear if not cured properly meat can be raw. During the biltong making process, the vinegar and salt kill the bacteria and prevent it from growing. This is what makes it safe to eat. After this, the meat is dried at a low temperature, so it’s generally safe to eat dried cured biltong unless the drying process happened without wind, or in extremely hot weather in bad hygienic conditions.

Biltong is a rich source of protein that is great for developing strong and healthy muscles making biltong safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding in our opinion. If you are pregnant or breastfeeding you can consume biltong in moderation, BUT if in doubt check with your GP and see our top tips below.

Is Biltong safe for teething babies?

As a father of 3 I know first hand about the ‘joys’ of a teething baby. Keeping biltong safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding is largely down to strict Health and Safety food hygiene standards. We take this very seriously making our products to very high standards.

Biltong can be a great substitute for a teathing ring because it is chewy and tasty. Teething gel can help ease teething pain but distraction is the best medicine. Giving your baby something like dried mango or biltong to chew on, can not only help ease the irritation, it’s a good distribution from the discomfort and a healthy snack.

BUT, a word of caution. Depending on the age of your baby, biltong can be a choking hazard. We’d advise against giving biltong to babies younger than 4-6 months old as a guide line.

Top 5 tips

To keep biltong safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding and teething you need to do your research, seek good professional advice and trust your parenting instincts.

  1. Avoid wet/moist biltong, it may be at risk of carrying bacteria or Listeria
  2. Avoid cheap biltong, get the best quality biltong you can
  3. Check Food hygiene ratings, if 3 or less best to avoid. We have a 5 star.
  4. Biltong can be a choking hazard for young babies, so best for babies over 4 to 6 months
  5. If in doubt consult your local GP for advice

We’ve got loads more info on our ultimate biltong guide, if you have any questions or comments please leave them below.

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