The safety of certain seafood is a common question during pregnancy. The good news is that there are MANY safe options for pregnancy. With that said, there are certain types of seafood that you should completely avoid during pregnancy, like shark and swordfish, because they’re high in mercury. There are others that are best to limit, like white (albacore) tuna, because they are considered “moderate” in mercury levels.
So, what if you’re in the mood for some surf and turf? As mentioned, there are several types of seafood you can eat while pregnant, and this includes lobster.
Eating a variety of foods during pregnancy helps to ensure you are getting the nutrients you need to support your growing baby. If you enjoy seafood, this is a great category of foods to include in your pregnancy diet.
Given that you’re reading this article, I’d say you’re already doing a good job of taking proactive steps to ensure you’re choosing both safe and nutritious choices during pregnancy. Today, I’m sharing everything you need to know about eating lobster while pregnant, if it’s safe, + the benefits for pregnancy!
Can You Eat Lobster While Pregnant?
Yes, lobster is safe to eat while pregnant, as long as it’s cooked properly first.
When eating fish and shellfish, it’s important to ensure that it’s cooked to a minimum internal temperature of 145℉. Raw or undercooked seafood is more likely to contribute to foodborne illnesses than seafood that has been fully cooked.
According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), lobster is one of the “best choices” of seafood during pregnancy. Lobster is low in mercury and high in vitamins and minerals that are beneficial during pregnancy, not to mention protein!
Raw or undercooked lobster is NOT recommended during pregnancy. Lobster that is not fully cooked could harness harmful bacteria and parasites that can contribute to foodborne illness during pregnancy.
It’s important to check the “other ingredients” in lobster dishes like lobster bisque and lobster thermidor. These often have raw egg yolks and heavy cream included in the recipes. If the dish uses pasteurized eggs and dairy, they are safe options to enjoy (you can always ask your server!).
For recipes that are not only safe for pregnancy but delicious and nutritious, check out this free meal plan!
Benefits Of Eating Lobster When Pregnant
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Lobster contains omega-3 fatty acids, which support baby’s brain development, as well as eye and nerve development. Omega-3 fatty acids may also play a role in reducing the risk of postpartum depression.
Lobster is a great source of protein. Protein is especially important during pregnancy because it supports the growth and development of your baby’s tissues and organs.
Lobster is a source of some heme iron. It’s important to include plenty of iron in your pregnancy diet to prevent anemia. Iron facilitates the production of red blood cells, helping to ensure adequate oxygen supply for both you and your baby.
Lobster contains vitamin B12, which is important during pregnancy for the production of red blood cells. It also supports the development of your baby’s nervous system, among many other functions.
Lobster also provides a good amount of zinc. Zinc plays a role in supporting your immune system and promotes healthy growth and development.
How Much Lobster Can A Pregnant Person Eat?
Lobster is a low-mercury seafood choice that includes many beneficial nutrients. Current guidelines state that up to 12 ounces (2-3 servings) per week of low-mercury seafood, which includes lobster, is both safe and recommended for pregnant women.
Be aware that fresh lobster spoils fast. To ensure freshness, cook your lobster within two days after purchasing. Frozen that is thawed properly and cooked thoroughly before eating is another safe option for pregnancy.
Before preparing your lobster, check to see that the shell is smooth. Avoid any lobster with a shell that is slimy, mossy, cracked, or off-smelling. Once your lobster is cooked, the meat should be white and firm. It should also smell fresh, not fishy.
Lobster is a safe and nutritious seafood option for pregnancy.
Lobster is one of several types of seafood that are safe to eat during pregnancy. It contains several vitamins and minerals that are important to include in a healthy pregnancy diet.
To learn more about supporting your pregnancy with proper nutrition, check out more posts on the blog.
Then, sign up for The Prenatal Nutrition Library app! It’s your one-stop searchable database for QUICK and EVIDENCE-BASED answers to all your pregnancy nutrition questions! Download the app for FREE on Apple or Android to get a peek inside and get a FREE 1-week meal plan!