Fish and seafood have a high risk of contamination with parasites, germs or toxins. So health experts recommend avoiding some fish and seafood during pregnancy. Considering the mercury levels in octopus, it will be better to avoid octopus while pregnant. If in the case, you want to consume, then consume in little amount. That too, the octopus should be cooked on high temperatures.
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Is it possible to eat seafood during pregnancy? This question is asked by many women, since taking care of food is fundamental to both the mother and the baby. During the pregnancy stage, women worry more about their diet. There are many foods that are considered vetoed during this stage, such as certain types of delicatessen cheese, fish or sausages.
Experts have always recommended limiting the consumption of fish and shellfish during pregnancy, due to the risk of contamination that exists. While seafood is an important source of protein, you have to be careful with some varieties.
Can you eat octopus while pregnant?
During pregnancy, the woman’s body undergoes many changes that generate significant nutritional needs that must be met with the diet and that will vary throughout the pregnancy. It is important to eat all food groups, always buy as little processed food as possible and, if possible, ecological, to prevent the entry of toxic substances to our body and the baby that is growing. However, there are some foods that should be taken care of, and others that should be avoided. But more than knowing what they are, you have to know why they are dangerous.
In the subject seafood, it is necessary to take special care with octopus. If its preparation has been based on smoking, marinating, salting or cooking it in vinegar. Seafood is a delicious food, but during this important stage, you have to set limits, like so many others. Hence, it is preferable that we opt for other culinary preparations that keep us away from any risk.
Mercury is a metal found naturally in the environment. It can also be released into the open air by industrial pollution. When mercury settles in water bodies, it is transformed by bacteria into a more dangerous form (methylmercury) that accumulates in the fatty tissues of fish. Although traces of mercury are found in almost all fish species, it tends to concentrate more on large predatory fish such as octopus, which has the highest accumulation of mercury because they feed on other fish and live longer. then the smallest species.
Although it is rich in minerals (iron and calcium), trace elements (zinc, selenium, iodine) and vitamin B12 – essential for the growth of the fetus and the good health of the future mother – seafood cannot be consumed in all its variants during the pregnancy.
Risks of eating seafood like octopus while pregnant
The risks are much greater than the benefits, so the ideal is to avoid seafood or, at least, limit consumption at specific times, and, above all, if you decide to eat at some time, that the cooking is careful, in the case of octopus, clams or prawns. Although they are delicious, they may contain microorganisms or dangerous pathogens.
Salmonellosis is one of the main dangers of eating seafood during pregnancy. It is a disease caused by the ingestion of food with a bacterium called salmonella, which causes food poisoning.
Other dangers would be anisakis, a nematode worm that spends its life cycle in the digestive system of fish and marine mammals, and also causes food poisoning, or toxoplasmosis, an infectious disease that, although harmless, for a baby can be potentially dangerous.
Read More: 5 Fish Varieties to Avoid During Pregnancy
Fish, such as octopus, can be eaten in small quantities, provided they have been cooked at high temperatures. The best thing will always be to avoid raw foods. However, if you have doubts about which foods or seafood to eat during pregnancy, consult the doctor. The doctor will recommend one thing or another, depending on each particular case.
Pregnant women should not consume fish with high mercury content. They can consume up to 12 ounces per week of low-mercury fish, such as shrimp, salmon, pollock, catfish and low-fat canned tuna. Some species, rich in omega-3 and with low mercury content include salmon, herring, anchovies, sardines, and trout. Following the above recommendations, pregnant women can access the health benefits offered by fish and, at the same time, reduce their exposure to mercury. The high mercury content can be harmful to the developing nervous system of the fetus or a small baby.
Limit consumption to once a week
The cooking usually destroys all the germs of the shellfish, but it does not eliminate the heavy metals. Therefore, it is important to limit your intake to once a week.
This weekly intake is enough to prevent an excess of heavy metals while still enjoying the benefits of these foods. This does not affect fish (whether lean or fatty), meat, eggs and vegetable proteins that must be present at each meal.