Are you getting the right amounts—and the right kinds—of fish in your diet? The FDA just released their recommendations for you.
Think you're eating enough fish while you're pregnant? If you're like more than half of all pregnant women in the U.S., you might not be consuming the recommended amount. The FDA has released a new set of guidelines detailing how much fish pregnant ladies should take in—and which varieties they should reach for as often as possible.
There may be a good reason you haven't been so keen on seafood since you've been expecting—after all, popular dishes like sushi are now off limits, it's easy to worry that you'll get too much mercury or undercooked fish and harm your baby—and as if that weren't enough, fish and morning sickness? Not always a great combination.
But according to the FDA, fish is something preggos should stop fearing and start eating—that is, as long as they're focusing on low-mercury varieties. The FDA sorted fish into three categories: You should try to get two or three servings of those categorized as "best choices" a week—those include fish like salmon, canned light tuna, shrimp, crab, tilapia, cod and catfish. One serving a week of the varieties referred to as "good choices" should be enough—that includes yellowfin tuna, halibut, and mahi mahi—and you should steer clear of stuff in the "fish to avoid" category, such as tilefish from the Gulf of Mexico, shark, swordfish, orange roughy, bigeye tuna, marlin and king mackerel.
The benefits of eating fish are pretty essential, according to the FDA. The nutrients found in fish can help with your baby's growth and development, and provide nutrients that are hard to get elsewhere. While all fish contains some level of mercury, this doesn't appear to pose harm unless its consumed in excess.
“It’s all about eating and enjoying fish of the right kind and in the right amounts,” EPA director for Water Science and Technology, Elizabeth Southerland, Ph.D, said in a release for this recommendation. “This joint advice not only provides information for fish consumers who buy from local markets, but it also contains good information for people who catch their own fish or are provided fish caught by friends or relatives.”
You can find more information—including the rundown of healthy fish varieties and recommendations for young kids—courtesy of the FDA.