Can you eat a pregnant squid?

In this short article, we will address the query “can you eat a pregnant squid?”. We will also learn about what a squid is, what they look like and grow, how long they can grow, how they reproduce, the nutrients of squid and health benefits and risk of squid consumption and how to cook the squid.

Can you eat a pregnant squid?

Yes, you can eat a pregnant squid. Squid like most seafood are excellent in their protein content and offer great benefits when consumed. You must however, cook them properly to prevent any food poisoning especially when consumed by pregnant and nursing mothers.

What is a squid?

Squid is one of more than 300 species of ten-armed cephalopods found in both coastal and marine waters that belong to the Teuthoidea or Teuthida order. Squids can be fast swimmers or drifting water creatures called plankton.

What does the squid look like?

Squids have short compact heads and extended tubular bodies. Two of the ten arms have grown into long, slender tentacles with enlarged ends, as well as four rows of suckers with toothed, horny rings. 

The body of most squid is strengthened by a feathery-shaped internal shell made of a horny material. The squid has eyes frequently inserted into the sides of the skull and are virtually as complex as human eyes.

How long can the squid grow?

The Southern pygmy squid, Idiosepius notoides is the tiniest squid, with males measuring only 1.6 cm or less than 3/4 inch in length. The largest gigantic squids and colossal squids found so far have measured approximately 13 metres or 43 feet in length.

How does the squid reproduce?

  • The squid is thought to reach sexual maturity around the age of three; males are usually smaller than females when they reach sexual maturity. 
  • Females lay vast numbers of eggs, up to 5 kg in weight, with an average length of 0.5 to 1.4 mm and a width of 0.3 to 0.7 mm. 
  • Females have a single median ovary at the back end of the mantle cavity, as well as paired, convoluted oviducts, through which developed eggs emerge via the oviducal glands and eventually the nidamental glands keeps the eggs together after they have been placed.
  • The single posterior testis in males produces sperm that travels to a complicated system of glands that produce spermatophores and are stored in the elongate sac which ends in the penis and is discharged after mating. 
  • It can be delivered in the form of spermatangia, which are sacs of spermatophores that the male injects into the female’s arms for fertilisation.
  • She will then hide the eggs in the water’s secret locations, such as under rocks or in whatever holes and crevices she can locate. 
  • It can take up to eight weeks for those eggs to hatch, making it tough to keep them safe from predators. After depositing the eggs, the mother squid leaves without waiting for them to develop.
  • The struggle to survive begins the moment a squid is born. They already learned to swim. They must find sufficient food to ensure their own survival besides struggling to keep predators away at the same time. 
  • A squid that survives against the odds when it is young has a lifespan of barely a year or two.

What is the nutritional composition of squid?

A squid is  an excellent source of protein like most seafood with varying levels of other nutrients. For a 4-ounce serving of raw squid, the nutrients available includes:

104 calories, 18 grams of protein, 2 grams of fat, 3 grams of carbohydrates, zero (0) gram fibre and significantly high micronutrients like calcium, iron and vitamin C.

What are the health benefits of eating squid?

Squid’s high protein content is often connected to its health benefits. Its polyunsaturated fatty acid concentration, commonly known as omega-3 fatty acids, provides additional benefits.

  • Seafood is recommended by the USDA as a healthful food for pregnant and nursing women. Squid has high protein and iron content, which is very helpful for pregnant women.
  • Squid has a higher concentration of the fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) than other seafood. The omega-3 fatty acid DHA has been proven to lower resting heart rate. Oils that are high in DHA such as squid oil, may also assist women to minimise platelet aggregation.
  • Omega-3 fatty acids present in seafood have been shown to help relieve the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis such as morning joint stiffness, joint swelling and pain.

What are the potential risks of eating squid?

In moderation, squid has generally been considered a safe food. Squid and shellfish pose the greatest health hazards due to mercury levels and allergies.

  • Squid, like any other shellfish, can cause allergic reactions. Tropomyosin, a protein, is thought to be the culprit. Squid should be avoided if you have a shellfish allergy.
  • Mercury has long been recognized to be present in seafood and their accumulation in the body can be dangerous, especially for children. Squid contains low amounts of mercury like others can be harmful to one’s health.  

How to cook squid?

Squid seafood can be prepared in a variety of ways, including frying, sautéing, baking, boiling and grilling. Squid can be used as a protein source in any meal that requires one. 

All seafood should however, be properly cooked to an internal temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit to ensure safety and prevent sickness.


In this short article, we have addressed the query “can you eat a pregnant squid?”. We have also learnt about what a squid is, what they look like and grow, how long they can grow, how they reproduce, the nutrients of squid and health benefits and risk of squid consumption and how to cook the squid.