Fish in Pregnancy


There’s a general consensus that fish is a healthy source of lean protein.   Pregnancy is a time when lean protein is an important part of a healthy diet for both mom and the developing fetus.

So, what about eating fish in pregnancy?

Benefits of fish:

  • Omega 3 Fatty Acids
  • Protein
  • Vitamin D
  • Iron

Concerns about fish in pregnancy:

Mercury contamination.   All seafood has some amount of mercury.  At high levels mercury can harm the brain development of a fetus.  Fish exposure in pregnancy has been studied at length and we know that when a woman eats 2-3 servings a week of fish, the benefits outweigh the risks. The World Health Organization (WHO) even goes so far to say that the best brain development for a fetus is when the woman has at least 2 servings a week during pregnancy.  

Fish to avoid:

  • Shark
  • Swordfish,
  • King mackerel
  • Tilefish
  • Marlin
  • Orange Roughy
  • Bigeye Tuna

What about sushi?

To avoid getting sick in pregnancy, women are advised to avoid all uncooked meat. This extends to uncooked seafood.  There are some sushi varieties that include cooked fish and those are safe in pregnancy.  But for most women who prefer the most common varieties that contain uncooked fish, you’ll have to wait until after delivery!


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