eating sushi while pregnant

Can I eat sushi while pregnant?

Sushi is considered one of the most luxurious foods, and depending on the kind of fish or type of sushi you are looking at, an equally commonplace everyday item. Granted, it is more of an acquired taste, so it is likely that you have never really grown to like it. But, if you are one of those people who have fallen in love with this delicacy from Japan, you might be despairing over the thought of giving this dish a pass for a whole nine months. That is because pregnancy is a pretty difficult time, and sushi, being made mostly from raw fish and other ingredients, is quite high on the risky foods list.

Certain varieties in moderation

However, let us put your mind to rest. No such rule exists that states that you absolutely cannot have sushi during your pregnancy. In fact, if you are pregnant, it is quite acceptable that you eat some sushi since the principal ingredient is fish, and that is pretty beneficial for the pregnant woman, thanks to all the nutrients. However, like everything else, the key here is moderation. Do not indulge too much in your love for the authentic sushi; you can reserve that for after you have delivered the baby. Apart from this, there are also a few other factors that you have to keep in mind, and you will be absolutely safe while indulging occasionally in a sushi or two.

Cooked fish sushi

To begin with, sushi is made from raw fish. But, some variants of the delicacy are also made with vegetables, steamed, and cooked fish. Raw or undercooked foods are best avoided by pregnant women since they might contain a parasite called listeria, which can lead to an illness called listeriosis. Now, listeriosis is not particularly uncomfortable for the woman; she will experience some mild nausea, headaches, fever, and digestive issues. For the baby, however, it can be even fatal. Listeria can transmit to the baby through the umbilical cord, leading to developmental disorders, miscarriages, still births, and pre-term deliveries. For this reason, it is best to stick with sushi made with cooked items for the nine months of pregnancy.

Cured fish sushi

However, that does not mean that all kinds of raw sushi must be avoided. Choose carefully among the fish variants. For instance, if you are eating sushi made with smoked salmon, there is no need to cook it since the process of smoking kills the germs. The same can be said about sushi made with salted or cured fish; these are antibacterial processes that will effectively get rid of the bacteria. Avoid sushi made with large fish such as mackerel and tuna as well since these have high levels of mercury, and that is especially not good for your health when you are pregnant.

Also read: Can I eat chicken during pregnancy?

In the end, remember that every pregnancy is different, and the best course of action would be to make sure that you consult your doctor before including anything remotely risky in your diet. Normally, you probably would not think twice before indulging in some supermarket sushi, but when you are pregnant, you must avoid them at all costs since they have probably been sitting on the shelf for quite some time.

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