Dundonnell Smoked Salmon

What Seafood And Fish Expectant Mothers Can Eat

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21 July 2016

Knowing what foods to avoid during pregnancy can be difficult, especially as the guidance seems to change year in, year out. So if this is not your first baby, you might think you know what you should not be eating, but the guidelines could have changed since you had your last child. 

That’s why we’ve put together a list of fish and seafood expectant mothers can eat during their pregnancy.

Smoked fish

While you might have initially thought smoked fish, including Scottish smoked salmon and smoked trout, would be something to avoid for nine months, it is in fact approved by the NHS as safe to eat.

Therefore, you can tuck into a delicious smoked salmon and scrambled eggs for breakfast or enjoy a starter of gravlax if you wish!


Similarly, despite sushi consisting of raw fish, it is still fine to eat it as long as you check that the fish, if it is wild, has been frozen first.

Wild fish contains parasitic worms that are unsafe for pregnant ladies that are killed once frozen; however, if you eating farmed fish, they do not contain these worms so they do not have to be frozen before eating.

If you are worried, you can always enjoy other types of sushi, such as those with cooked seafood or fish, or ones containing vegetables or egg instead.

Cooked shellfish

A few years ago the advice was to avoid shellfish, but these days it is deemed safe to eat seafood if it is cooked first. Therefore, you can enjoy your prawns, scallops, clams, mussels, crab or lobster to your heart’s content if they are pre-cooked and cold, or cooked and eaten hot. 

It is advisable not to eat them raw as they may contain bacteria that could make you ill.

Most types of fish

Most cooked fish is perfectly safe to eat during pregnancy, and indeed it provides good nutrients to keep you and your baby healthy.

However, the three fish you should avoid for their high levels of mercury are shark, swordfish and marlin. You should also limit the amount of oily fish to two portions a week.

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