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Why Eating Fish Is Essential for a Healthy Pregnancy?

Dr. Meenu Goyal 90% (635 ratings)
DGO, MBBS
Gynaecologist, New Delhi  •  14 years experience
Why Eating Fish Is Essential for a Healthy Pregnancy?

Fishes are depositories of the good nutrients that are essential for maintaining the optimal health of the human body. Broadly speaking, fishes have high protein and low-fat content, which helps to boost up the metabolism and immunity of the body. A fish meat in the diet is very often suggested by doctors for women during their pregnancy, even to the women who are vegetarians.

There are certain dishes which are low on mercurial content and high on minerals and beneficial acids, which are recommended to consume during pregnancy. These include fishes like Salmon, Anchovies, Herring, Sardines, Trout, Pollock, Catfish, Atlantic and Pacific Mackerel. As per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) pregnant women can safely eat up to 12 ounces (340 grams) of seafood in a given week. Here are certain reasons which make fish consumption essential for a pregnant woman.

  • The presence of omega-3 fatty acids - One of the main highlights of fish meat is Omega-3 fat or Omega-3 fatty acids. It is a form of unsaturated fatty acid that is commonly found in fish oils secreted by the meat of the fish. These acids, mainly help the baby to develop its brain and the eyesight faster and better. Additionally, it also helps in energy storage, oxygen transport, cell membrane function, and regulation of inflammation in the mother's body.
  • Low Fat Substitute - It is a known fact that fishes are rich sources of protein and vitamins like Vitamin C and D. They are usually low on all forms of fat, saturated fat and fatty acids. This helps to avoid fat accumulation in the fetus as well as in the mother's body.
  • Better development of the baby - It is a scientifically proven fact that, higher fish consumption by women during their pregnancy is associated with increased cognitive scores, and decreased the risk of autistic symptoms (a brain development disorder found in children).

Conclusively, fishes have always been a desirable food to consume during pregnancy by women. But, you should always be careful while fish consumption, due to pollutants like mercury and PCBs (Polychlorinated biphenyls, which is a form of a chemically reactive substance), which are harmful to the baby as well as the mother.

Related Tip: How Excessive Caffeine can Stop you from Becoming Pregnant?

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