What Not to Eat When Pregnant with Reference to Shrimp and Seafoods : Current School News

What Not to Eat When Pregnant with Reference to Shrimp and Seafoods

Filed in Nursing News by on May 25, 2021

To be a man is not an easy job, neither is being a woman.  It is rather interesting how the different roles were shared in such amazing ways. To start thinking about what not to eat when pregnant as a woman is a whole new level of stress. Questions like “can pregnant women eat shrimp?” “What kinds of foods can a pregnant woman not eat?”,  begin to pop up in a pregnant woman’s mind.

What Not to Eat When Pregnant with Reference to Shrimp and Seafoods

Truly, it might be that the woman cannot help pondering these issues. If you want to consider the stress that usually comes with pregnancy, then you might not want to reconsider getting pregnant in the first place.

Dieting and nutrition for a pregnant woman require a whole lot of attention and care. As a pregnant woman, you don’t just go about eating anything. As friends and loved ones of these pregnant women, we have to be watchful.

The duty is on all of us. The appetite of pregnant women tends to reach new heights from the normal levels. They start yearning for strange and random things like shrimps and all.

A deficient or wrong diet can destroy the fetus and lead to miscarriage and other complications. Thus, to avoid this, one needs to know what food a pregnant woman can eat and what food can she not eat.

We keep mentioning shrimp here because it is one of the things that pregnant women like lusting after. So, can a pregnant woman eat shrimp?  All details need to be considered when it comes to pregnant women.

This article will make an informed attempt at answering the questions of nutrition for the pregnant lady. What not to eat when pregnant, what quantity of food can she consume when pregnant are very vital and critical points to note. Read through this informative piece to be able to get better information.

Can Pregnant Women Eat Seafood?

Can Pregnant Women Eat Seafood?

Seafood is a good choice for pregnant women, but it is important to be careful with the type of fish you eat and where it’s sourced from. Seafood that’s high in mercury (see list below) poses a risk to your baby’s developing nervous system, which is why it’s important to avoid older, larger fish that could contain higher quantities of mercury.

To be safe, it’s best to avoid

  • shark
  • swordfish
  • king mackerel
  • tilefish
  • raw shellfish like oysters and clams.

Big Tommy

Can a Pregnant woman Eat Shrimp?

With research showing that ingesting high mercury levels can have harmful effects on your baby, many women are reluctant to eat seafood during their pregnancy.

While it is good to be cautious about your diet, there are a number of types of seafood that are safe to eat, including shrimp. Shrimp contain low levels of mercury; they also are low in fat content and high in protein, making them a healthy choice for pregnant mothers.

Research suggests eating between 8 and 12 ounces of shellfish or fish per week, which is two or three meals. It is important to cook the shrimp thoroughly, and to avoid raw shrimp, as is found in sushi or sashimi. It is also good to be aware of the area which the shrimp came from.

As stated above, it is safe for pregnant women to eat 8 to 12 ounces of shrimp each week, as it has a low mercury content and contains healthy nutrients like protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and iron.

Pregnant women can also safely eat low-mercury seafood like clams, cod, haddock, scallops, sardines.

But pregnant women should avoid all high-mercury seafood, including king mackerel, marlin, orange roughy, swordfish, and bigeye tuna.

Depending on where the shrimp were caught, mercury levels may be higher or lower than expected. Your community health department may have information on mercury levels in local bodies of water if you want to eat locally caught shellfish. The important thing to remember is to cook the shrimp completely. Then, enjoy!

How to Cook Shrimp when you are Pregnant

  • When preparing shrimps, fish, and shellfish, it’s also important that you cook:
  • fish to an internal temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit, until the flakes are opaque
  • shrimp, lobster, and scallops until they turn milky white in color
  • clams, mussels, and oysters until the shells open. Throw away those shells that remain closed.

You may also be wondering whether pregnant women can eat sushi. Uncooked fish and shellfish come with an increased risk of harmful bacteria, so avoid sushi made with uncooked fish or shellfish, as well as refrigerated smoked fish, like salmon.

What does a Woman Stand to Benefit by Eating Shrimps when Pregnant?

What does a Woman Stand to Benefit by Eating Shrimps when Pregnant?

Shrimp contains nutrients like omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants like astaxanthin that are needed for the health of the fetus as well as pregnant women in the long term. Omega-3 fatty acids help reduce the risk of any preterm birth of the baby.

In addition to this, babies that are born to mothers with higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids are less likely to have a low birth weight. Omega-3 fatty acids are also beneficial for the fetus’s neurological and eye development.

This is the reason most prenatal medicines have omega 3 fatty acids in them. Pregnant women should get the natural source of omega 3 fatty acids in the form of shrimp.

Apart from omega-3 fatty acids, shrimps are also rich in protein, vitamin B2, and vitamin D. These nutrients are essential for the overall health of the fetus and the mom to be.

Shrimps are also one of the best sources of iron, magnesium, and potassium. Eating iron-rich food helps the body produce extra blood that is needed for the baby. Besides, it can assist in providing more energy to women during pregnancy.

Shrimps are also rich in a type of carotenoid antioxidant known as astaxanthin. Shrimp is one of the major food sources of astaxanthin. Having astaxanthin helps protect against inflammation by preventing damage to your cells by free radicals. Astaxanthin is widely studied for the key role it plays in reducing the risk of many chronic diseases, which is especially important when a woman is pregnant.

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What are the Dos and Don’ts of Eating Seafood During Pregnancy?

What are the Dos and Don’ts of Eating Seafood During Pregnancy?

Seafood, which includes fish and shellfish, can be a great source of protein, iron, and zinc — crucial nutrients for your baby’s growth and development. The omega-3 fatty acids in many fish, including docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), also can promote your baby’s brain development.

But some types of seafood — particularly large, predatory fish such as shark, swordfish, king mackerel, and tilefish — can contain high levels of mercury. Although the mercury in seafood isn’t a concern for most adults, special precautions apply if you’re pregnant or planning to become pregnant.

If you regularly eat fish high in mercury, the substance can accumulate in your bloodstream over time. Too much mercury in your bloodstream could damage your baby’s developing brain and nervous system.

Other Rules on what Not to Eat when Pregnant

Consider these precautions about your eating habit when you are pregnant:

1. Avoid Large, Predatory Fish:

 To reduce your exposure to mercury, don’t eat shark, swordfish, king mackerel or tilefish.

2. Skip Uncooked Fish and Shellfish:

 To avoid harmful bacteria or viruses, don’t eat uncooked fish and shellfish, including oysters, sushi, sashimi, and refrigerated uncooked seafood labeled nova style, lox, kippered, smoked, or jerky.

3. Understand Local Fish Advisories:

 If you eat fish from local waters, pay attention to local advisories. If advice isn’t available, limit fish from local waters to 6 ounces (170 grams) a week.

4. Cook Seafood Properly:

 Most seafood should be cooked to an internal temperature of 145 F (63C). Fish is done when it separates into flakes and appears opaque throughout. Cook shrimp and lobster until the flesh is pearly and opaque. Cook clams, mussels and oysters until their shells open. Discard any that don’t open.

Pregnant Woman on a Chair

5. Avoid Undercooked Meat, Poultry, and Eggs:

During pregnancy, you’re at increased risk of bacterial food poisoning. Your reaction might be more severe than if you weren’t pregnant. Rarely, food poisoning affects the baby, too.

Fully cook all meats and poultry before eating. Use a meat thermometer to make sure.

Cook hot dogs and luncheon meats until they’re steaming hot — or avoid them completely. They can be sources of a rare but potentially serious foodborne illness known as a listeria infection.

Avoid refrigerated pates and meat spreads. Canned and shelf-stable versions, however, are OK.

Cook eggs until the egg yolks and whites are firm. Raw eggs can be contaminated with harmful bacteria. Avoid foods made with raw or partially cooked eggs, such as eggnog, raw batter, and freshly made or homemade hollandaise sauce, and Caesar salad dressing.

6. Avoid Unpasteurized Foods:

Many low-fat dairy products — such as skim milk, mozzarella cheese, and cottage cheese — can be a healthy part of your diet. Anything containing unpasteurized milk, however, is a no-no. These products could lead to foodborne illness.

Avoid soft cheeses, such as brie, feta, and blue cheese, unless they are clearly labeled as being pasteurized or made with pasteurized milk. Also, avoid drinking unpasteurized juice.

7. Avoid Unwashed Fruits and Vegetables:

To eliminate any harmful bacteria, thoroughly wash all raw fruits and vegetables. Avoid raw sprouts of any kind — including alfalfa, clover, radish, and mung bean — which also might contain disease-causing bacteria. Be sure to cook sprouts thoroughly.

8. Avoid Excess Caffeine:

It’s unclear how much caffeine use during pregnancy is safe. Your health care provider might recommend avoiding caffeine, if possible, or limiting the amount of caffeine in your diet to less than 200 milligrams (mg) a day during pregnancy.

For perspective, an 8-ounce (240-milliliters, or mL) cup of brewed coffee contains about 95 mg of caffeine, an 8-ounce (240-mL) cup of brewed tea contains about 47 mg, and a 12-ounce (360-mL) caffeinated cola contains about 33 mg.

9. Avoid Herbal Tea:

There’s little data on the effects of specific herbs on developing babies. As a result, avoid drinking herbal tea unless your health care provider says it’s OK — even the types of herbal tea marketed specifically for pregnancy to pregnant women.

Woman Eating Fruit

10. Avoid Alcohol:

No level of alcohol has been proved safe during pregnancy. The safest bet is to avoid alcohol entirely.

Consider the risks. Drinking alcohol during pregnancy leads to a higher risk of miscarriage and stillbirth. Drinking alcohol may also result in fetal alcohol syndrome, which can cause facial deformities and intellectual disability.

If there is anything we should joke about, it should not be pregnancy. We are very much aware of the spate of infant mortality and the pains that accompany such an experience. As such, learning what not to eat when pregnant is a simple sacrifice compared to having to mourn a lost pregnancy and in worse cases the mother too.

If it is shrimps, catfish, ice cream, or whatever food that is whetting your appetite as a pregnant woman, you need to first find out if safe.  

Do well to share this insightful article with your friends.

CSN Team.

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