If you are one of those women who enjoy seafood, you might be interested if it`s safe to eat crab while pregnant.
It is true that specific sushi types aren`t allowed while expecting. However, that does not mean you aren`t allowed for crab or lobster feasts for the period of pregnancy.
Specialists advise you to eat seafood. It represents a wonderful protein source, but it also includes omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins A and D. Like we`ll see immediately below, crabs is wonderful for eye or brain development, and it`s even considered be able to fight pregnancy and postnatal depression.
Table of Contents
Is It Safe to Eat Crab while Pregnant?
Perhaps the biggest problem when eating crabs during pregnancy is represented by the risk of natural pollutants, like dioxins, mercury, polychlorinated biphenyls, which might exist in them. Still, crabs belong to the lowest possible category when talking about contamination and have lots of benefits while pregnant.
Crabs don`t pose a threat when expecting a baby only if various conditions are met:
- The source of the crabs is important.
- Crabs have to be cooked thoroughly.
- They have to be eaten in moderation.
- You need the doctor`s approval to consume crabs.
Additionally, there`re a few aspects to take into account before eating this great dish during pregnancy.
Crabs are part of the fish category of foods, so you need to pay attention to the warnings of FDA. So, just as with anything else that you consume during pregnancy, it`s essential to talk to an expert about this.
For instance, just as mentioned earlier, you should never consume this type of food before talking to the doctor who supervises your pregnancy if the level of your cholesterol isn`t under control.
Can I Eat Crab Sticks during Pregnancy?
Expecting mothers should keep in mind that fish-related processed products, like crab sticks, are normally produced from crabs that contain low mercury levels. Thus, it`s always for future moms to eat 2 or 3 servings of such products per week.
Can I Eat a Crab Cake while Pregnant?
Future mothers could have crab cakes as a result to healthy recipes. Thus, expecting moms shouldn`t miss out on such delicacies if it`s cooked properly.
Can You Eat Snow Crab Legs while Pregnant?
Snow crab legs contain low amounts of fat, but which is enough for the daily necessities of the body. On the other hand, it contains high levels of sodium which may prove to be dangerous if you consume them in excess. Thus, you`ll have to be certain you`ll cook it properly using healthy toppings.
Crab can be cooked by frying, steaming, grilling or boiling. However, it can`t be consumed raw or half-cooked during pregnancy.
How Much Crab You Should Eat during Pregnancy?
You shouldn`t consume more than 12 ounces of seafood per week during pregnancy. This may either include only crab or could include a combination of crabs as well as other types of shellfish. However, you should make certain that one single serving doesn`t go over three or six ounces.
Benefits of Eating Crabs during Pregnancy
Low Cholesterol Levels
Future moms with low or normal levels of cholesterol can consume this fish dish. Pregnant women with high cholesterol levels have to talk with their doctor first before eating it.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids have an essential role in the fetal development of the brain and vision. Three ounces of cooked crab meat has 351 mg of omega-3 fatty acids, so you can take into account while calculating your pregnancy weekly diet.
It Contains Folate
Did you know that crabs contain folate, an important vitamin for pregnant women? This vitamin aids preventing neural tube defects.
High Levels of Calcium
The high levels of calcium make crabs great choices for the development of teeth and bones for the future baby.
Low Levels of Calories
Crab meat has low amounts of calories, which is kind of great because whenever you have cravings, you can consume it with no worries about additional weight gainings.
High Vitamin B12 Levels
This particular vitamin has a vital role in the development of the spine, brain and neural tube, and it also aids improve mood swings during this particular period of time in your life. Three ounces of crab meat contributes with 9.78 mcg of the necessary requirement on a daily basis.
High Levels of Protein
Expecting mothers need 40 – 70 g of protein. Three ounces of crab meat make up for 16.45 g of this requirement.
Tips to Consider when Eating Crab
Undercooked or raw crabs are more prone to have dangerous bacteria or parasites. Consuming them like this may result in various illnesses such as salmonella, listeriosis and toxoplasmosis.
Like you may already know, pregnancy changes your immunity. This will make it much more difficult for the body to combat bad microorganisms which cause such infections and illnesses.
The developing immunity of your baby is not so advanced to defend for itself. Eating undercooked or raw crab might lead to miscarriage or congenital abnormalities.
Going for Variety
Most seafood has a certain mercury amount. And even crabs don`t include too much mercury, choosing to eat a large variety of fish might be even better.
While pregnant, consuming twelve seafood ounces every week is seen as a safe choice. Remember that a normal serving size of fish, crab included, is three to six ounces.
There`s a research published in The Lancet that discovered no side effects for expecting moms who consumed over twelve ounces each week. Actually, the pregnant women who attended in this research consumed up to ten times more seafood than the average U.S. citizen. The research “claimed” that these future mothers consumed a large variety of seafood.
Handling with Care
How you store, handle and prepare the crabs you consume is also essential due to safety reasons. Use the below tips to increase their longevity and safety.
- Wash all knives and cutting boards thoroughly with hot water after handling the crabs.
- Use other cutting boards and knives for raw crabs.
- Crabs need to be cooked until it will flake and seem opaque.
- Discard any crabs which have been left out at the temperature of the room for over 2 hours.
- Toss out all the precooked or perishable crabs after 4 days.
- You also have to wash the hands carefully before as well as after handling the crabs.
Consuming crabs is a good idea during pregnancy. However, like with everything else, moderation is the key. Also, talking with the doctor first never hurts, especially if you aren`t sure of something.