Can you eat anchovies when pregnant?

In this article, we will answer the question, “Can you eat anchovies when pregnant?”. We will also answer other questions related to the subject, including what is DHA, how many anchovies can you eat in a week during pregnancy, what are the health benefits of eating anchovies during pregnancy, and more.

Can you eat anchovies when pregnant? 

Yes, you can eat anchovies when pregnant. Anchovies are a good source of DHA and you can safely add them to your diet when pregnant. 

Are anchovies a good source of nutrition during pregnancy? 

Yes, anchovies are a good source of nutrition as they provide nutrients that are required for the development of your unborn baby. A one-ounce portion of canned anchovies has 8 grams of protein, 13 milligrams of iron, and 66 milligrams of calcium. 

While protein is essential for the healthy development of your baby, iron is needed to support the growing blood volume, and to prevent anaemia and fatigue. Calcium intake is important when you’re pregnant because it is essential for healthy bones. 

What is DHA? 

DHA, or Docosahexaenoic acid is a crucial nutrient found in fatty fish that helps your baby’s brain develop properly. It is also important for the healthy development of a baby’s eyes. 

As the child’s brain is developing at a high rate during the third trimester, this nutrient is especially necessary. Certain varieties of fish, regardless of their DHA level, are not recommended during pregnancy, however, anchovies are safe to eat and are rich in DHA.

How many anchovies should you eat when pregnant?

You should eat up to 12 oz of anchovies per week if you want to get the many health advantages it provides without exposing yourself to dangerous levels of Mercury. This is also the highest limit of acceptable fish consumption when pregnant. You can add anchovies to a tossed green salad, pasta, or soup. 

You can also sauté anchovies and have them with steamed vegetables. Another tasty way to eat anchovies is to layer them up on a pizza or slice them and put them on a toast with chopped tomatoes. 

Are anchovies a low mercury fish? 

Yes, anchovies are a low mercury fish. According to the US Food and Drug Administration, anchovies are very low in mercury, as low as 0.016 ppm of mercury on average. Even with the different species of anchovies found worldwide, the Environmental Defence Fund classifies all of them in the low Mercury fish category. 

Should you eat raw anchovies when pregnant?

As raw anchovies are more likely to be contaminated with bacteria, you should not eat them when pregnant. Pregnant women can eat marinated anchovies if they’re packed in factories and avoid those anchovies stored in open containers like at deli counters. 

Can you eat anchovies in Caesar salad when pregnant? 

Caesar salad is made with fresh, canned, or salted anchovies. Click here to read more about the safety of eating caesar salad with anchovies when pregnant, because there are certain factors that you need to be careful about. 

What are the benefits of eating anchovies when pregnant?

These small fish are packed with essential pregnant nutrients which are important to include in your diet so you can meet your prenatal requirements, but it Is also important that you watch your salt intake. Some of the benefits of eating anchovies when pregnant are

Calcium 

Calcium intake for pregnant women is 1000mg per day. It is important for the development of a baby’s bones and teeth, as well as many muscular, circulatory, and neurological functions in the body. While Calcium is generally linked with dairy foods, it may also be found in greens like kale, and broccoli, as well as fish like anchovies, salmon and sardines. 

A 3-ounce serving of anchovies has around 200mg of Calcium, which is equivalent to the amount of Calcium provided by half a cup of yoghurt. 

Vitamin D 

During pregnancy, the requirements of vitamin D do not change during pregnancy or lactation, but as vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin, it is required for Calcium absorption which is essential for bone health and lowering inflammation. 

Anchovies are one of those foods that have vitamin D naturally.   A 3 oz serving of anchovies provides you with 10% of the daily value.

Omega 3 

Omega 3 fatty acids, particularly DHA and eicosapentaenoic acid are abundant in anchovies. Omega 3 is essential for a baby’s brain development, and consuming 200 mg of DHA is recommended for pregnant women. Anchovies contain both, DHA and EPA. A 3 oz serving of anchovies provides you with 1.7 grams of total omega 3 fatty acids. 

Iron 

Pregnant women should consume 27 mg of iron per day, which is 50% more than non-pregnant women. Blood volume increases dramatically during pregnancy, and additional iron is required for red blood synthesis. 

Iron is plenty in anchovies. Heme iron is also found in anchovies. It is a type of iron found in fish and meat and is easier to absorb as compared to nonheme iron that is found in plants and fortified foods. 

Salt 

Anchovies in jars and cabs are heavy in sodium. The institute of medicine recommends that pregnant women and the general adult population consume 1500mg of salt per day. Fresh anchovies are low in sodium content. 

A 3 oz serving of fresh anchovies has 88 mg of salt and cooked anchovies have 3000mg. Look for reduced salt options.

Conclusion

In this article, we answered the question, “Can you eat anchovies when pregnant?”. We also answered other questions related to the subject, including what is DHA, how many anchovies can you eat in a week during pregnancy, what are the health benefits of eating anchovies during pregnancy, and more.

References

https://healthyeating.sfgate.com/can-eat-anchovies-pregnant-1760.html
https://www.hellomotherhood.com/article/528240-can-pregnant-women-eat-yams/

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.