Monday, October 3, 2011


There are many foods that are no-no's when you are pregnant. Most people will tell you to avoid certain types of fish that are high in mercury. The challenge is that fish is a very good thing to eat when you are pregnant because it provides a lot of omega-3s, which are great for baby's developing brain. This, of course, led me to extensive research about which fish were low enough in mercury to eat while pregnant.
We continue to avoid high-mercury fish because it's still a risk for my breast-feeding baby, and I really don't see the point in eating mercury laden fish when there are many safer options. Below is the list of safe fish, fish to eat in moderation, and fish to avoid while pregnant. I have found Super Target to have a surprisingly wide selection of safe frozen fish. The Market Pantry Wild-caught Alaskan Salmon is great and relatively inexpensive.

Safe Fish-fish that are high in omega-3s and low in mercury. Doctors say up to 2 6 oz. servings a week are safe, and even recommended.
farmed abalone, farmed catfish, farmed clams, stone crab, king crab, flounder, haddock, atlantic mackerel, farmed mussels, wild Alaskan or pacific salmon (we eat a lot of this), canned wild pink or sockeye salmon, sardines, bay scallops, farmed scallops, northern shrimp, Oregon shrimp, spot prawns, farmed striped bass, farmed sturgeon, farmed trout, butterfish, calamari, Pollock, whitefish, ocean perch, flounder, hake, herring, spiny/rock lobster, shad, sole, crawfish/crayfish, clams, tilapia, freshwater trout
Eat in Moderation-no more than 6 6 oz servings per month.
  • carp, mahi mahi, Dungeness crab, snapper, blue crab, atlantic herring, snow crab, monkfish, freshwater perch, skate, cod, Canned light chunk tuna, fresh Pacific Albacore tuna
Avoid-these are too high in mercury. This applies for everything baby eats until 1 year of age.
  • king mackerel, Atlantic salmon, Chilean sea bass, shark, unidentified or farmed shrimp, swordfish, tilefish, canned albacore white tuna, orange roughy, grouper, marlin, bass saltwater, croaker, halibut, fresh bluefin tuna, ahi tuna, sea trout, bluefish, American/Maine lobster.


  1. Oh no! My favorite fishies are on the do not eat list. Do these rules apply if you aren't with child???

  2. Sorry for my late response...

    Nate and I talked about this because there are so many things on the pregnancy do-not-eat list, and he was wondering why they are safe when you aren't pregnant? (Lunch meat is a prime example.) Because adult brains aren't growing so rapidly, you can indulge on your mercury-dosed fish on occasion. But now that I know what's in them, I eat them a bit more sparingly myself. Your brain should be okay though. As adults, I think we have enough other things that will harm our brains besides a little fish mercury. :)



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