When you find out you are pregnant, you want to make sure you are eating foods that are beneficial for you and your growing baby. Seafood can be very nutritious and can be a part of your diet while pregnant. What about shrimp? Is shrimp during pregnancy safe?
Nutritional value of shrimp during pregnancy
The nutritional value of shrimp depends mostly on how you prepare and serve it. Shrimp is generally low in saturated fat and is a good source of protein, vitamin B12, niacin, iron, phosphorus and zinc. Shrimp is also a good source ofomega-3 fatty acid and the essential amino acid tryptophan, which helps maintain a balanced sleep pattern and helps to stabilize mood.
Shrimp is said to be high in cholesterol but a more recent study said that shrimp does not adversely affect cholesterol levels. The American Heart Association modified its guidelines in 2001 and it now says shellfish, such as shrimp, in moderation can be part of a healthy diet.
How to prepare shrimp during pregnancy
If you have four ounces of shrimp that is steamed or boiled it would be low in calories and have no carbohydrates. One of these ways is the healthiest option.
When you fry shrimp or serve it in a butter or cream sauce the added calories and fat content do not make it beneficial during pregnancy.
See also kippered
Is shrimp during pregnancy safe?
Women who love shrimp always want to know if they can still have shrimp while pregnant. The main concern most people have with eating shrimp during pregnancy is the mercury levels. When you eat seafood during your pregnancy you will want to choose fish with low levels of mercury and shrimp is one of those.
The mercury categories from least amount to highest amount are based on how much mercury is in the fish.
- Least mercury: Less than 0.09 parts per million
- Moderate mercury: From 0.09 to 0.29 parts per million
- High mercury: From 0.3 to 0.49 parts per million
- Highest mercury: More than .5 parts per million
Shrimp has an average of 0.001 ppm and is considered to be in the category of fish that contains the lease amount of mercury.
For information regarding other types of fish see mercury levels in fish
Clinic, Mayo. (2004). Guide To A Healthy Pregnancy. New York, NY: HarperCollins Publishers Inc.