Being pregnant is not an easy responsibility. A woman tends to have different symptoms and cravings caused by their child-bearing. In addition, they become sensitive to all the things surrounding them, especially food. Other than that, they need to ensure that they eat safely and healthily for themselves and the baby.
There are different types of fish in the market, ranging from tuna, cod, salmon, flounder, and many more. Other sea creatures are eaten by many such as crabs, mussels, etc. Fishes have a distinctive meat texture and, of course, their smell.
Every fish has a smelly odor. Fish enzymes and bacteria turn TMAO into trimethylamine (TMA), giving a fishy stench after the fish are killed and decomposed. The presence of trimethylamine may determine a fish’s freshness. Perhaps a whiff of ocean or lake water is all you can detect in the aroma of fresh fish, which is not overwhelming.
However, regardless of the smell, they are a good source of vitamins and minerals, which are beneficial to humans, and of course, to pregnant women. Fish and shellfish are excellent sources of protein, iron, and zinc, all of which are necessary for one’s baby's healthy development as they grow. Eating fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), may improve the baby's cognitive function. But they need to be picky and sensitive about their choices.
Large predatory fish like sharks, swordfish, and king mackerel may have significant amounts of mercury, which is why it's essential to avoid eating these species. If one is pregnant or expecting to become pregnant, one should take extra measures while eating seafood because of mercury. A buildup of mercury in the circulation may occur when mercury-containing seafood is consumed regularly. Mercury may harm one’s baby's growing brain and neurological system if one has too much of it in circulation.
So what are the fish that are safe to eat by pregnant women?
The following types of seafood are low in mercury, rich in omega-3 fatty acids, and are safe for pregnant women to consume:
- Freshwater trout
- Pacific mackerel
Shrimp, Pollock, Tilapia, Cod, Catfish, or Canned light tuna are all safe options. As for tuna steaks, restrict yourself to 6 oz. of white (albacore) per week.
There are also other things to consider when eating fish. Pregnant women may also take note of the following:
- Stay away from huge, predatory fish.
Avoid eating sharks, swordfish, king mackerel, and tilefish to minimize one's mercury exposure.
- Avoid raw fish and shellfish until they've been cooked thoroughly.
Uncooked fish and shellfish and refrigerated uncooked seafood should be avoided to prevent the spread of hazardous germs or viruses.
- Become familiar with local fish warnings
Keep an eye out for any local warnings if one plans on eating fish caught in own backyard. If guidance is not available, fish from local waterways should be limited to 6 ounces (170 grams) per week.
- Cook seafood correctly.
A 145 degrees Fahrenheit is the ideal cooking temperature for most types of seafood (63C). When the fish flakes apart and is completely opaque, it's done cooking. Cook the lobster and shrimp until the meat is opaque and pearly white. Open the shells of clams, mussels, and oysters with boiling water. Toss others that don't open out of the way.
Suppose pregnant women cannot handle fishy foods. In that case, there are other alternatives for them to get the nutrients being given by fish, such as Canola oil, Walnuts, Sunflower seeds, Yogurt, Milk Eggs, and supplements.
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