Pregnancy causes a number of changes in your body, both bodily and biologically. Hormonal fluctuations might alter not just your mood but also your eating habits. Some pregnant women suffer food aversions, which make them nauseous just thinking about eating particular meals. Some, on the other hand, have significant food cravings.
And what if a platter of fried calamari with garlic sauce and a touch of lemon strikes your fancy? Is that all right?
You’ve probably heard that certain types of seafood are excellent for pregnant women, thanks to omega-3s and other nutrients. Is it, however, fine to consume calamari while pregnant? Let’s take a closer look at the quick answer: yes.
Why Is Mercury Considered As A Disturbing Factor?
Calamari as well as other seafood are high in nutrients and can be included in a healthy pregnancy diet.
Many people are concerned about the mercury levels in seafood, particularly when it is about pregnancy. Mercury concerns can even hinder pregnant women from reaping the advantages of fish. Mercury is a chemical that exists naturally. It can be found in the water, the air, and the land. However, excessive exposure can be harmful to people. Mercury toxicity can result, affecting brain, lung, kidney, and heart function.
Mercury levels are higher in some shellfish. Elevated concentrations of mercury during pregnancy, such as eating shellfish or grains tainted with mercury, can disrupt fetal development, cause cognitive impairment, and raise the chance of cerebral palsy. However, a new study has indicated that there isn’t much reliable evidence linking moderate amounts of mercury from fish consumption among pregnant women with fetal development problems.
In fact, as this 2018 study shows, a fish diet is beneficial to embryonic growth and maternal health. While it’s critical to avoid food that’s recognized to be unnecessarily high in mercury, such as mackerel, shark, swordfish, tilefish, bigeye tuna, and marlin, avoiding other seafood because of mercury concerns isn’t necessary. In fact, according to the current Dietary Guidelines, pregnant women should eat 8 to 12 oz of seafood per week.
Nutrients In Calamari
Calamari contains several of the essential elements for a healthy pregnancy. Calamari has 15.25 grams of protein every 3-ounce serving, which is important for the development of your future baby’s cells. Calamari has 0.86 milligrams of iron and 4.66 milligrams of zinc per serving. Iron aids in the formation of red blood cells in your baby, while zinc aids in the production of enzymes and insulin. Calamari also contains modest quantities of vitamin B12, E, A, and folate, a vitamin that aids in preventing some birth defects, in a 3-ounce dose.
Should You Eat Calamari?
Mercury levels range by kind of seafood, with certain species having higher mercury content than others. Pregnant women must avoid seafood with high mercury levels, according to FDA research. The great news for calamari fans is that it contains little mercury, making it a safe option during labor if consumed in moderation.
Calamari is among the healthiest seafood picks for pregnant women. Calamari has a mercury content of approximately 0.024 parts per million, that is substantially lower than a shark, tuna, swordfish, and marlin. Calamari has a low mercury content, thus it’s acceptable to eat two to three meals per week. A single serving is equal to 4 oz of food.
How Should Calamari Be Cooked?
Although squid is acceptable to consume while pregnant, it must be prepared correctly. This seafood can be prepared in a variety of ways, including frying, baking, and grilling. Squid can also be seared, but avoid doing so when pregnant. While the outer surface may be cooked, the inside may be uncooked, putting your baby in danger of being unwell.
Seafood should be thoroughly cooked to a temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit (62.8 degrees Celsius). It’s critical to put any remnants in the refrigerator as soon as possible after cooking. It just takes 1 or 2 hours for dangerous germs to develop at room temperature.
Health Benefits Of Calamari In Pregnancy
Calamari is not only delicious, but it also possesses nutrients that are good for pregnant women. Calamari, for example, is an excellent source of essential fatty acids. Fatty acids are necessary for fetal brain development throughout pregnancy. Calamari is also high in protein, vitamin E, B12, copper, zinc, and iron, which are all essential nutrients for pregnant women.
Other Safe Seafood
Calamari is not the only acceptable seafood to eat while pregnant. Other low-mercury seafood, such as scallops, shrimp, oysters, and clams, are also safe to eat.
Other fish with low mercury levels include:
- white fish
PCB levels in these other species of fish and seafood may be similar to those found in oily fish. Sea bream, halibut, turbot, dogfish, and crab are among them. Limit yourself to two meals of these fish per week. In addition, you should limit your tuna consumption to four moderate cans or two filets per week. Tuna includes mercury, which will not hurt you, but a lot of it will affect your baby’s neurological system as it develops.
Shark and marlin have far higher mercury levels than other fish, therefore you shouldn’t consume them while you’re pregnant. When raw, any sort of fresh seafood might carry worms such as tapeworms, making it potentially dangerous. Tapeworms will make you sick and deplete the nutrients your baby requires.
If you like oysters and other shellfish, ensure they’re fully cooked if you really want to continue eating them while pregnant. Raw shellfish could be infected with pathogenic bacteria and viruses, resulting in food poisoning. During labor, you’re more prone to food poisoning. Raw fish food will not hurt the baby, but it will make you very sick. Shellfish, on the other hand, maybe cooked properly to remove bacteria and viruses, making it safe to eat.
When you’re consuming food for two people, it’s critical to eat nutritional foods that will help you have a good pregnancy. While some foods are unsafe to consume while expecting, calamari can be included in a healthy diet. Calamari provides many of the vitamins your growing baby requires while also being free of mercury contamination, which is a worry during pregnancy.