Can I Eat Crumbed Calamari When Pregnant First Trimester

Can I Eat Crumbed Calamari When Pregnant First Trimester

Pregnant women can be easily confused about what to eat and what not to eat, especially when it looks like everyone is following different rules. Confusing is the fact that judgments about the safety of individual foods fall into four different categories: "yes", "no", "in limited quantities" and "it depends". In general, calamari (squid rings) is a "yes" as doctors say it is perfectly safe for pregnant women. However, fish and seafood as a category is not as straightforward as concerns about mercury, freshness, and susceptibility to contamination. Knowing the current seafood consumption guidelines for pregnant women will put your mind at ease.

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Is Calamari a Safe?

As long as it is fresh and fully cooked, calamari is safe for pregnant women. If you are concerned that squid will typically only cook for a few minutes, then this should not be done. Whether fried or stewed, calamari are cooked through in no time. To be on the safe side, only eat calamari (and other seafood dishes) in restaurants that you trust have impeccable food safety standards. If you buy raw calamari at a fish market or supermarket to cook at home, make sure they are very fresh or frozen, keep them refrigerated, and cook within 24 hours of buying them. You can ask the fishmonger what time period the squid you are trying to buy was caught or thawed. Again, you are only buying from providers you know and trust.

When eating in pairs, it is important to choose nutritious foods that will support a healthy pregnancy. Certain foods are not safe to eat during pregnancy, but you can include calamari in your healthy pregnancy diet. Calamari provides many of the nutrients your growing baby needs but is not contaminated with large amounts of mercury, which is a problem during pregnancy.

Nutrient
Calamari provides many of the most important nutrients you need for a healthy pregnancy. A 3-ounce serving of calamari provides 15.25 grams of protein, a nutrient essential to the formation of your unborn baby's cells. The same serving of calamari contains 0.86 milligrams of iron and 1.48 milligrams of zinc. Iron helps your baby make healthy red blood cells and zinc helps your unborn baby make enzymes and insulin. A 3-ounce serving of calamari also provides small amounts of vitamin B12, vitamin C, vitamin A, and folic acid, a B vitamin that helps prevent certain birth defects.

Mercury Hazards
Mercury contamination is a problem during pregnancy as it can affect the formation and development of your baby's nervous system. Almost all fish contain traces of mercury, but you should keep seafood as part of your pregnancy diet as most varieties are low in saturated fat and high in nutritional value. However, you need to choose the safest types of seafood. Avoid shark, tile fish, swordfish, marlin, and king mackerel.

Calamari and Mercury
You can safely eat two 6-ounce servings of calamari every week, according to the American Pregnancy Association. You will get a generous dose of nutrients while keeping your mercury intake low. Other low-mercury alternatives include shrimp, crab, flounder, haddock, salmon, trout, scallops, and whitefish. Do not consume more than 12 ounces of these low mercury options each week.

Considerations
Many restaurant versions of calamari are deep-fried, which reduces their nutritional value. Fried calamari can contain 6 grams or more of total fat per 3-ounce serving. Much of this fat is unhealthy saturated fat, which increases your risk of heart disease and weight gain. Opt for steamed or sautéed calamari for a more nutritious meal. Make calamari at home as another healthy alternative. Steam or fry the squid with fresh vegetables and serve with brown rice or a mixed green salad.

How healthy calamari really is depends on how it is cooked (i.e. steamed, fried, grilled are all better than fried), but calamari and squid can make a good, healthy addition to your pregnancy diet.

On its own - without a breaded, deep-fried coating, calamari is low in fat, low in calories and rich in protein. It's also a good source of vitamin B12, selenium, and zinc. Squid can have high cholesterol levels at 260 mg per 100 g. If you're on your cholesterol levels, then you may want to eat less calamari and choose other seafood options instead.

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