I was spoiled when I was a kid. My step-grandfather worked on a fishing boat (as the chef- can I just tell you how much we like to be invited over to dinner at his house???), and so my childhood was filled to the brim with incredible, fresh Pacific ocean seafood.
Though I no longer eat seafood other than fish with scales (that means no clams, shrimp, oysters, etc.), I am still a big fish-lover at heart.
You've probably heard that fish is incredibly high in good omega 3 fatty acids, perfect not only for the pregnant mama's health but especially for developing that sweet little one (omega 3s are essential for proper brain development, among other things). You have probably also heard that, very sadly, our fish are being contaminated by heavy metals and other toxins (especially mercury) at an alarming rate, due to water pollution, making fish consumption a risky deal during pregnancy. Both are true.
So just what is a health-conscious, fish-loving pregnant mama to do?
From EWG, here is an excellent guide to choosing what to eat for dinner:
Avoid If Pregnant
Gulf Coast Oysters
Eat No More Than One Serving From This List Per Month
Great Lakes salmon
Gulf Coast blue crab
Channel catfish (wild)
Lowest In Mercury
Blue crab (mid-Atlantic)
Salmon (wild Pacific)
Please note that canned tuna is absolutely a no-no during pregnancy. It's sad, but true.
Making your fish choices based on this list is a wise thing to do. During this pregnancy, I am limiting myself to lots of wild Pacific and Alaskan salmon (canned and whole), haddock and trout (with the occasional cod or pollock) for white fish, and that's about it. Of these choices, I feel good about eating freely and knowing that my baby and I are receiving the most nutrients possible, through the safest options.
Another excellent option for ensuring sufficient omega 3 fatty acids, as well as Vitamins A and D, is to take Cod Liver Oil daily. For those wanting to know more about the benefits, as well as put to rest any concerns about Vitamin A toxicity, read this article on Cod Liver Oil, and then this one with some clarifications on the subject. Make sure that you choose a brand with third party testing to assure no heavy metal contamination.
Do you eat fish regularly? Does this list of which fish to avoid surprise you? Any other Cod Liver Oil takers out there?