Is it Safe to eat Shrimps during Pregnancy?

Pregnant women are generally advised to avoid eating raw, undercooked or unpasteurized seafood and shrimp is a type of seafood that falls into this category. However, some have suggested that pregnant women can safely eat cooked shrimps and shrimp dishes as long as they are served hot and do not contain any raw ingredients such as fresh shrimps or sauces. So let’s explore this question and shed a potential light on the subject of pregnant women and eating shrimps.

What are shrimps?

Shrimps are a delicious seafood that can be served in a variety of ways, from lightly fried to stewed and fresh. They’re also popular in sauces, like shrimp creole. Generally, shrimps are one of the most popular types of seafood because they’re low in calories and high in protein, as well as being high in Omega-3 fatty acids, which promote healthy brain function. Shrimps contain iodine and selenium, two important minerals for the human body. It’s no wonder that shrimps have been eaten for thousands of years!

Facts about Shrimps

Before we fully discuss the topic, let us state some known and historical facts about shrimps.

  1. A shrimp is a type of crustacean that can be found in both fresh and saltwater.
  2. They are typically found in the ocean but have been known to live in freshwater habitats.
  3. Shrimps have a lifespan about 2-4 years, but some rare species can live up to 6 years.
  4. The average weight for a shrimp is usually 0.33oz, but some species can get much heavier than this.
  5. Most shrimps have 10 legs, but some only have 5.

These are some facts about shrimps to introduce you to today’s subject of discussion. You might not know it, but people all over the world eat shrimps! Some cultures like Thailand and China even use them as decorations for their temples because they believe that it symbolizes purity. There are many different types of shrimp out there. Also, shrimps try to mate with each other by holding hands on their back. One interesting fact about these fish is that during mating season, males will clean females’ genitalia with their antennules (sense organs).

Well, before we bore you with the description of shrimps, that introduction was to simply highlight the features of shrimps. Now let us explore if this seafood is beneficial to pregnant women or not.

Benefits consuming shrimps by pregnant women

There have been several debates and forum threads on pregnant women and shrimps. Recent reports have suggested that when women consume shrimp, they are providing their unborn baby with vital nutrients and omega-3 fatty acids that can help support healthy brain development. These studies show that the benefits of consuming shrimps by pregnant women include;

  • Improved Memory
  • Enhanced Concentration
  • Problem solving skills.
  • The increase in blood flow from eating these high protein foods helps to promote an oxygen rich environment for a developing fetus.
  • It may reduce the risk for diabetes and heart disease in the mother
  • Prevent weight gain during pregnancy.

With these many benefits, one can only wonder why there is the debate in the first place. It is important to note that some species of raw or undercooked shrimp may contain harmful bacteria such as salmonella or vibrio vulnificus which can be transferred to an unborn child through vaginal secretions or amniotic fluid. So it is generally advised to properly cook the shrimp before it is eaten by pregnant women.

So there you have it, a brief overview of shrimps and a brief explanation into when it is safe and unsafe to eat for pregnant women.

Let’s conclude by wishing you safe delivery!

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