My Babys Amazing Pregnancy Can I Eat Crawfish While Pregnant?

Can I Eat Crawfish While Pregnant?

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Can a woman who is pregnant eat crawfish? If properly cooked, crawfish are safe for pregnant women to consume. They can be eaten hot or cold after cooking. Raw or undercooked crawfish should not be consumed by pregnant women.

When is Crawfish Acceptable to Eat While Pregnant?

The good news for crawfish lovers is that they don’t have to give up the delectable mollusk while expecting. When thoroughly cooked, it is completely safe to consume and has a lower mercury content than other seafood, with an average of 0.033 parts per million (ppm) of mercury. The Food and Drug Administration classifies seafood as low in mercury if it has 0.1 ppm or less. As a result, you can have properly prepared crawfish at any time during your pregnancy.

The nutrients in crawfish are beneficial to both you and your unborn child. Given that it is a lean protein, it is a fantastic low-fat option. Iron, niacin, copper, selenium, and trace levels of vitamins C and A are also abundant in them. It’s important to limit your seafood consumption to 12 ounces per week, or about two to three servings. Since crawfish are smaller than lobsters and crabs, you can consume more of them while still adhering to the suggested dietary limits.

Four Benefits of Crawfish for Pregnant Women

Crawfish As A Nutrient-Rich Food

Crawfish, like most other seafood, provides essential nutrients for developing a child’s brain and nervous system. Cooked crawfish contains: 

  • A good amount of quality lean protein
  • Omega-3 fatty acids
  • Omega-6 fatty acids
  • Phosphorus
  • Zinc
  • Selenium
  • Choline
  • Iodine
  • Vitamin B12
  • Vitamin D
  • Iron
  • Small amounts of vitamin A and E

Crawfish May Support Brain Development

Omega-3, which is present in crawfish, may help the baby’s brain and cognitive development. The findings of two systematic reviews revealed a beneficial relationship between increased seafood consumption during pregnancy and verbal IQ, motor abilities, and social cognition.

Crawfish May Support The Immune System

Health as a whole is impacted by the immune system. An immune system that is functioning properly can reduce the likelihood of infections and inflammation, which can lead to serious diseases. Zinc, iron, and vitamin D are minerals found in fish and shellfish like crawfish that are crucial for a strong immune system. Omega-3 fatty acids found in seafood may also help to reduce inflammation. The immune system’s reaction to seafood or non-seafood components such as parasites, germs, viruses, and toxins can cause shellfish allergy in certain people, though.

Crawfish May Lower The Risk of Heart Diseases

Crawfish, like the majority of other seafood, have a healthy supply of omega-3 fatty acids. Numerous studies have been done on how omega-3s affect the cardiovascular system. For the general population, the American Heart Association recommended 6 ounces of fatty fish weekly to lower the risk of cardiovascular illnesses. 

When Crawfish isn’t OK During Pregnancy

Although crawfish is thought to be safe to eat while pregnant, it needs to be prepared properly. Accidentally consuming seafood that is undercooked is the biggest worry. 

Thankfully, crawfish is not a type of shellfish that is frequently consumed uncooked. However, if it’s undercooked, you run the danger of exposing yourself and your child to bacteria, viruses, or even parasite disorders. 

Additionally, since the mercury content in imported crawfish is unclear, you should stay away from them.

How Much Mercury Is in Crawfish?

Women who are pregnant are frequently aware that they need to watch their mercury intake, notably when it comes to fish and other seafood. 

The average concentration of mercury in crawfish is 0.033 parts per million. To give you an idea of how low that is, seafood with a mercury content of up to 0.1 PPM is still regarded as “low.” Due of the low quantities of mercury in crawfish, pregnant women shouldn’t be concerned.

The USA produces both farmed and wild crawfish, both of which are thought to contain little mercury. Given that the United States is one of the major producers of crawfish, this is the most likely variety you’ll see. 

It’s worth noting that imported crawfish are listed as having an ‘unknown’ amount of mercury, so it’s probably best to stick to USA-sourced farmed or wild crawfish.

If you’re fishing for wild crawfish yourself, check if there are any marine advisories in the area indicating that there may be pollution or other issues with certain local bodies of water.

How Much Crawfish Can You Eat When Pregnant?

In the USA, pregnant women are advised to eat 8 – 12oz of low mercury fish or shellfish a week. This includes crawfish, as they’re low in mercury.

To avoid any negative effects of mercury on your or your baby’s health, it’s best to limit the amount of crawfish (and other seafood) that you eat in a week. 

Try not to eat more than 8 to 12 ounces in total. That’s two to three 4-ounce servings of shelled crawfish tail meat.

As a guide, a serving is as big as the palm of your hand.

Are Crawfish Good for Pregnant Women?

You might be wondering if eating crawfish while pregnant now that you know they can be eaten safely when prepared.

Crawfish are a healthy, low-fat, and low-saturated fat source of protein. They’re also a great source of niacin, selenium, copper, iron, and copper.

Vitamins A and C are also present in very little quantities.

Although crawfish do contain cholesterol, this is only a problem if you need to control your intake and have been advised to do so by your doctor.

Other than that, crawfish are a good option for pregnant women who want to eat shellfish, especially if they are boiled or steamed rather than fried. 

How to Cook Crawfish Safely at Home

Practice Good Food Hygiene

It’s important to understand how to handle and cook the wonderful shellfish whether you want to eat them at the top crawfish restaurant in Houston or in the comfort of your own home. To prevent cross-contamination and lower the risk of spreading dangerous infections, handling raw crawfish requires the use of separate cutting boards and equipment. When handling raw crawfish, thoroughly cleanse your hands, utensils, surfaces, and appliances.

Check The Temperature When Cooking

Any bacteria or pathogens in the meat of crawfish will be destroyed by thorough cooking, making the seafood safe to consume. Considering that a pregnant person’s body is working nonstop to maintain two people, they have weakened immune systems. You might want to use a cooking thermometer to check that the crawfish is cooked enough because it needs to achieve an internal temperature of 165oF before it is safe to consume.

What Seafood Can You Eat While Pregnant?

So, crawfish and pregnancy are pretty good friends, but there are lots of other types of seafood you can enjoy too.

In fact, there’s a long list of fish that the FDA recommends as safe and nutritious for mamas-to-be, and which are low in mercury. These include:

  • Anchovy
  • Butterfish
  • Haddock
  • Plaice
  • Salmon
  • Freshwater trout
  • Whitefish

But remember it’s best to limit yourself to 12 ounces (in total) of seafood per week.


Because they contain less mercury than crawfish from other countries, crawfish harvested or grown in the United States are the safest to consume. This means that you can enjoy tasting and sampling nice crawfish close to you as you are not required to avoid crawfish when pregnant. You can eat as much as you like as long as it’s cooked correctly and comes from a domestic source.

Looking for Houston’s top crawfish restaurant? At the Crawfish Cafe, we have it all and more. We serve Viet-Cajun crawfish and seafood, including littleneck clams, gulf blue crabs, black mussels, snow crab legs, shrimp, and more. We have been named the best crawfish around. Check out our menu right away to start your appetites being sated!

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