Pregnant Mothers, This Is How To Minimize The Risk Of Mercury In Fish

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Pregnant Mothers, This Is How To Minimize The Risk Of Mercury In Fish
Pregnant Mothers, This Is How To Minimize The Risk Of Mercury In Fish

Consuming foods high in protein and omega-3 fatty acids, such as fish, is important for pregnant women. Although fish is at risk of containing mercury which can harm the fetus, pregnant women do not need to worry because there are various guidelines for eating fish safely during pregnancy

Fish is rich in various nutrients needed by pregnant women and fetuses, from protein, vitamin B12, and vitamin D, to docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) which is beneficial for baby's brain development. That's why pregnant women are still advised to eat 2-3 servings of fish per week.

Pregnant women, this is a way to minimize the risk of mercury in fish - Alodokter

The Danger of Mercury from Fish for Pregnancy

Although it contains many beneficial nutrients, fish is also at risk of containing mercury which can harm the fetus, especially if consumed in the long term. Some of the dangers that can be caused by exposure to mercury in pregnant women are:

  • Baby brain development disorders
  • Disorders in the process of developing baby's abilities, such as the ability to walk, talk, remember, and pay attention
  • Increased risk of children experiencing attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)

Of the various types of fish that are scattered, the larger and longer-lived marine fish tend to have the highest mercury content. Big fish eat a lot of small fish, so the mercury found in small fish will build up in the bodies of big fish over time.This process is also known as bioaccumulation

Fish in this group that pregnant women should avoid. These include shark, swordfish, marlin, cod, king mackerel, bluefin tuna, and baramundi.

Tips for Eating Fish Safely

To prevent the risk of mercury from fish, the following are some guidelines for consuming fish during pregnancy that you need to pay attention to:

1. Limit the amount of fish consumption

Seafood, including fish, is the type of food most easily exposed to mercury. So, the consumption of seafood in pregnant women needs to be limited. The recommended consumption limit is about 350 grams or about 2-3 servings of low-mercury fish in 1 week.

2. Choose the right type of fish

Choose fish that are not too large and are not predatory (predatory fish). Some types of fish that are considered safe and low in mercury are sardines, salmon, tilapia, catfish, anchovies, and canned tuna.

3. Avoid consuming raw fish

Several studies have shown that raw fish will have a greater effect on mercury than cooked fish.

In addition, consuming raw fish, including sushi, sashimi, smoked fish, and fish jerky, is also not recommended for pregnant women because of the risk of causing dangerous bacterial or viral infections.

4. Cook the fish until cooked

Make sure the fish that pregnant women consume has been cooked until cooked or with a minimum temperature of 65 degrees Celsius. The characteristics of cooked fish are that the flesh is soft, grayish white, and easy to remove.

In essence, pregnant women don't have to worry too much. As long as you pay attention to the type, portion, and how to cook it, pregnant women can eat fish. In addition, the human body is actually able to get rid of mercury naturally, as long as it's not excessive.

He alth problems due to mercury will only occur when a person eats fish or foods high in mercury continuously for months or in excessive portions.

Pregnant women can also take advantage of other foods as sources of omega-3 fatty acids, such as sunflower seeds, squid, edamame, almonds, chia seeds, and omega-3 enriched eggs. If necessary, ask your doctor about the types of good foods to meet nutritional needs during pregnancy.

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