Pregnancy is a very crucial stage for a women. Along with all the other care and comfort that they must give to themselves, a proper diet stands as one of the important aspects. Most of the food items that are not junk are healthy for pregnant women, but there are certain food items that are otherwise healthy but may harm the developing fetus in the womb. So, it’s better to take advice from the doctor and make a chart of the food items you should eat and the food items you should ‘avoid’.
Fishes are generally a healthy choice during pregnancy. But, some fishes contain mercury and other pollutants in high amount which may affect the baby’s development. Mercury can lead to problem in the development of the nervous system of the baby, brain, hearing disorders and distorted vision. So, it’s better to take healthy and safe diet during the three trimesters as per the doctor’s recommendation.
So, for the sake of all fish lovers who are in their pregnancy stage, here is a list of fishes which are not only safe but ‘must haves’ during the crucial stage of motherhood.
Fish during Pregnancy: 6 Most Nutritious Fishes
Salmon has innumerable health benefits. It is specially recommended to pregnant women. It is a rich source of vitamin B and protein that helps in the proper growth of the muscles and overall development. It helps to maintain blood pressure and prevents heart stroke. The DHA present in this fish helps in the development of the nervous system of the fetus and is prevents postpartum depression. What’s best about eating this fish is that it avoids premature delivery and preeclampsia. Well, let’s not forget that anything taken in excess can be harmful. Though Salmon contains less Mercury but if you are taking salmon regularly and in a good amount, it may turn out to be harmful for the fetus. Mercury retards their brain development. Moreover, most fishes are said to be polluted PCB which is a chemical pollutant, this is present in Salmon as well. So, stay cautious.
Adding just 3 ounce of trout into your meal gives around 20 grams of protein and 143 calories of energy. Good enough, isn’t it? Trout is one of those fishes which have low mercury level. So it is considered to be safe for pregnant women. It is rich in Vitamin B, phosphorus, potassium, and selenium. These vitamin and minerals have many health benefits. Doctors recommend three to four servings of mercury in a month for any pregnant women. Rainbow trouts are the most easily available and preferable breed of trouts. Farmed trouts are kept away from environmental pollutants so they are the healthiest fishes to have during pregnancy.
Proper nutrition is very important during pregnancy. They need iron, calcium and docosahexaenoic acid(a type of omega – 3 fatty acids) in a good amount. Well, anchovies is a breed of fish with provides all these nutrients. Unlike other large fishes which are loaded with mercury, anchovies has a very low level of mercury, which makes it very safe for pregnant women. So, it’s a tasty way to fulfill all the prenatal needs for any fish lover during pregnancy. Anchovies contains calcium and vitamin D which is important for stronger bones, and essential omega such as DHA which are highly recommended to pregnant women as it helps in growth of brain of the baby. Anchovies also contains the necessary iron for producing more blood cells as the blood volume increases during pregnancy. Though this fish comes with a high amount of nutritional value doctors recommend to watch the amount of sodium.
Every three ounce of a dish of herring provides you with 173 calories, 19.6 grams of protein and 9.9 grams of fat, including just 2.2 grams of saturated fat, which is a quite healthy choice. Herring is rich in selenium, phosphorus and potassium. Selenium helps in the formation of DNA, and also acts as an antioxidant which avoids cell damage. Potassium balances the amount of sodium in the body. It is also rich in vitamin D and vitamin B and also gives an opportunity of increasing omega-3 fat in the body. Since, it’s advisable to check the intake of salt during pregnancy, it’s better to take plain herrings over pickled or kippered herrings. Otherwise it’s a very yummy option to calm down your cravings to eat fish during pregnancy.
Sardines can be considered as the most inexpensive source of calcium and omega-3. Talking about omega-3 this sardines are considered to be the greatest source of natural omega-3 on the planet. There are some questions that arise into the mind like the possible pollutants that may be present in the fish, but luckily Sardines are not prone to such pollutants and end up as a safe choice. The benefits of including sardines in your diet are improving brain function, protecting against cancer, reducing inflammation,boosting heart health, filling common nutrient deficiencies and many more such benefits.
Owing to its nutritional content, that is, zinc , calcium, low fat, lean protein and vitamin B12, Cod fish is considered a very healthy option for pregnant women. It’s also low in mercury, thus a safe dish to be enjoyed. You can eat upto six ounce serving of cod per month. Its benefits are indeed a plus point for any pregnant fish lover.
So, as you saw there is a whole host of good reasons to have these fishes when you are pregnant. This was a list of fishes you can have during pregnancy but fishes like Bigeye Tuna, Gulf tilefish, king mackerel, marlin, orange roughy, shark, and swordfish have the highest mercury content and can turn out to be fatal for pregnant women, breastfeeding women and young kids. So, make sure to avoid these fishes for the healthy growth of your baby. Mercury is a toxin for the brain of the baby and has the potential to turn your happiness into misery, so you must check on whatever you eat because it directly affects your baby. Happy Parenting!