Can I eat red meat if I’m trying to get pregnant?

13th July in Blog, Diet, Lifestyle, Uncategorised


Q. Dear Fit-for-Fertility. Can I eat red meat if I’m trying to get pregnant? Many fertility diets recommend not eating too much red meat. But how many times a week would be classed as too much? I’ve been offered conflicting advice, some say to cut it out completely, with other advice that says to eat it three times a week. Can you help?

There can be a lot of conflicting advice about the best diet to follow if you are trying to get into the best possible health when trying to get pregnant or if you are preparing to undergo fertility treatment.

With regard to your question about whether to include red meat into your diet, it is good to bear in mind that quality, lean red meat is a good source of protein and contains important vitamins, such as the B vitamins, and essential minerals like zinc and iron.

Many studies on eating red meat have concluded with the advice that to reduce the risk of bowel cancer a diet should include no more than 500g (cooked weight) per week, or 70g per day, of red meat, such as beef, pork and lamb, and to keep to a minimum processed red meats like sausages, ham, bacon and salami.

We would recommend following this same advice if you are planning to become pregnant. However, if you do decide to include red meat into your diet, why not try limiting it to 2-3 times a week?  Remember that a balanced diet can include protein from sources other than red meat, so include chicken, turkey, fish and dairy, as well as beans and pulses. Wherever possible try to consume organic meat from grass fed animals.

So, if you’re planning to get pregnant or on getting fit for fertility treatment, make sure that you eat a well-balanced diet which includes high quality protein, from both vegetable and animal sources, include plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, reduce or cut out processed foods completely and drink plenty of water. We would also recommend taking a daily folic acid and vitamin D supplement.

We also recommend increasing the amount of daily exercise that you currently do. This doesn’t have to mean joining a gym; it can be as simple as going for a regular walk or swim. And, of course, it’s important to make some changes to your lifestyle, such as stopping smoking and drinking alcohol.

If you have concerns about your fertility or have been trying to conceive for more than a year, we would recommend that you seek professional advice. The earlier a diagnosis is made and treatment commenced, the better the chances of success. Find out more about our fully comprehensive and quick One-Stop Fertility Assessment service for men and women.


For more information on including red meat into your diet read



Preparation is key when trying to get pregnant – Part one «
Improve your gut health before conception »

Twitter LinkFacebook LinkInstagramLinkedIn LinkEmail LinkTelephone
Twitter LinkFacebook LinkInstagramLinkedIn LinkEmail LinkTelephone