I just finished Expecting Better, by Emily Oster and rather enjoyed it. She’s not a doctor, but an economist and she approaches her research pretty thoroughly and weighs the pros and cons of each situation.
I did learn some new stuff. It reinforced some of my own heavily googled research on certain topics (like a glass of wine) and really drove home the dangers of turkey deli meat, which I had been dabbling in here and there (but no more!)
My doctor had already ok’d a glass or two of wine a week and I ran across this book while looking up articles on the topic for the millionth time. I’m just terribly paranoid and I terribly want to have a glass of wine with my dinner. In the book, she says it is ok to have as much as a small glass of wine every evening as long as you drink it slow and not on an empty stomach. So I now compromise and let myself have a half glass of red wine here and there, only with food. It makes me happy and I don’t feel the need for more.
But she covers much more than that- like the different danger levels of food on that long no-no list. She says sushi is actually ok if it is a low mercury fish and that if you did actually get sick from it, it wouldn’t hurt the baby at all. However, that the deli meat situation with Listeria would be very very harmful to the baby and is best avoided if possible. I was mildly freaked out to learn listeria could be lurking in any fruits, veggies and meats that had long term refrigeration. I think she said the last big outbreak before turkey was in celery. Good thing I hate raw celery.
She also covers some stuff I wasn’t even aware about, like cervical checks leading up to your due date and whether they are necessary and could actually do harm by introducing bacteria even with the gloves on. Apparently cervical dilation in the weeks leading up to your due date does not give an indication of when you might go into labor. You could walk around partially dilated for weeks. Also she said it hurts. I had no idea I had this uncomfortable vagina poking experience on the horizon. I tried googling it and it sounds like the doc basically sticks a hand in and pokes a finger in your cervix to see how open it is. I just kept thinking- can’t they do this with an internal ultrasound? Do I have options here?
A good read overall. She presents her research and her conclusions, but it’s always best to take in all the info and draw your own conclusions and figure out what makes you feel good about each situation.