23 Aug 2015
Many women who are pregnant always look for many queries regarding what they should eat during pregnancy or what not. The most common and frequently asked question they often want to be acquainted with fish, “Is it fine to have fish during pregnancy period and which one”? Let’s discuss in detail; women can eat which fish during pregnancy?
Women can eat which fish during pregnancy?
You have probably heard that fish is an important source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are crucial for the appropriate development of the brain as well as eyes. The fish meat is also low in saturated fat and rich in protein, vitamin D and other nutrients vital for the development of the baby over and above for a healthy pregnancy.
On contrary, perhaps you have also heard that some types of fish contain contaminants such as mercury, if pregnant women take this element in rich amount can be harmful for the development of the baby’s nervous system.
Majority of experts have the same opinion, pregnant women should eat fish but can be difficult to understand what is safe and what is not to eat.
Below we suggesting some guiding principles helping you limit your exposure to mercury and choosing an appropriate fish during pregnancy to eat.
How does the mercury contaminate in the fish?
Mercury is everywhere, even in the air we breathe. Some of its sources (such as volcanoes and forest fires), are natural. It is also released into the air from power plants; cement plants moreover some industrial and chemical manufacturers. It is used in the manufacturing of thermometers and thermostats and can be released when these products break up after hitting the rigid surface.
When mercury is reacted with water, bacteria present in water convert it into a form called methyl-mercury. Fish absorb methyl-mercury from the water in the form of food and water while they swim. Methyl-mercury binds tightly to proteins in the muscle of fish and remains there even after the fish has been cooked.
Nearly all fish and shellfish contain some amount of mercury, but large predatory fish accumulate more of it amount. This is because predatory fish eat other fish that already have absorbed a little quantity of mercury. The much larger predator fish will eat many smaller fish to survive. Also larger fish live longer than smaller fish, so there is simply more time to accumulate mercury in their bodies.
What can happen if I eat fish with high mercury content, while I am pregnant?
Your body will easily absorb methyl-mercury from fish and when you are pregnant, the mercury crosses the placenta.
Studies show that exposure to high concentrations of methyl-mercury during pregnancy may impair the appropriate development of the baby’s brain as well as nervous system. Cognitive abilities (such as memory and attention), the properties of learning, brain skills plus visual perception may be affected. Women, those who are pregnant for the first time and those who are doing breastfeeding, both are more susceptible if take high levels of mercury.
Experts are still discussing about exactly how much mercury is harmful, but most are agree that it’s good if pregnant women and children avoid eating that fish potentially exposed to a high level of mercury or to limit it in the diet.
Why you shouldn’t stop eating fish during pregnancy?
The fish is a good nutritional choice especially during pregnancy, for proper growth of the baby but most of the experts agree that eating fish usually causes outweigh.
It is not necessary or even possible to avoid completely exposure to mercury. When a pregnant woman completely stops eating fish to avoid mercury, the child may lose healthy nutrients that only fish can supplies. However, pregnant women can eat safely Salmon, Sardines, Anchovies, Trout in addition to Herring.
A study reveals that, children whose mothers ate more fish during pregnancy (an average of 300 grams per week) had developed sharp mind babies with proper cognitive skills more than those whose mothers had neglected completely to eat fish. Other studies also showed that eating fish during pregnancy may help prevent premature births.
Which fish are most risky?
USA Experts issued a joint statement for the levels of mercury in fish; they came to know that four kinds of fish that pregnant women as well as little age children should not eat because they contain high levels of mercury including shark, Malacanthidae, king mackerel plus swordfish. Some experts also advised to avoid eating fresh or frozen tuna, bluefish as well as Chilean Sea bass.