Many women are under the impression that they should never eat fish while they are pregnant. Mercury is a problem for pregnant women everywhere, which is probably why recent reports have shown that a majority of the pregnant women in the United States don’t eat enough fish. Why are fish important? Consuming fish aids in the development of your baby’s brain and eyes, but how can you make sure that you are getting your fish requirements in safely? The following is a guide from our Sarasota obstetrics clinic on how to eat fish while pregnant:
- Look for fish that is high in Omega-3 fatty acid and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) but low in mercury. These fish can include anchovies, pollock, salmon, and freshwater trout.
- Avoid fish that come from the Gulf of Mexico, like swordfish, tilefish, king mackerel, or shark, as these contain high levels of mercury.
- Never eat fish raw during pregnancy. Make sure that the fish that you are eating is cooked properly.
- Canned light tuna has a low mercury level that is safe to consume while pregnant, however bluefin tuna and albacore tuna should be avoided, because they contain higher mercury levels that could be unsafe.
- Pay attention to where the fish came from, and check a fish consumption advisory before you decide to purchase it.
For more information about safely eating fish during pregnancy, check out the FDA’s advice. You can also feel free to schedule an appointment with us at University Park Obstetrics and Gynecology. Our doctor will be happy to discuss your any concerns that you may have.