The proverb that states you are “eating for two” while pregnant is both true and untrue.
Although you shouldn’t quadruple your calorie intake when pregnant, everything you put into your body has an impact on your unborn child.
To avoid consuming foods that might contain ingredients that could be harmful to a developing baby and to maximize the nutritional value for both of you, experts advise being vigilant about what you consume while pregnant.
You might need to make a few dietary adjustments if you enjoy eating a lot of fish.
Omega-3 fatty acids, which are healthful fats good for your body and brain (and your baby’s, too), are one of several minerals and proteins found in fish.
But other types are better avoided. For instance, you should definitely avoid the majority of sushi because many varieties of it contain raw fish, which might expose your developing baby to pathogens and mercury.
What about scallops, though? Where do these bivalve mollusks rank in the list of pregnancy-safe foods?
The simple answer is yes, although perhaps not in the way you’re used to having them. They’re still healthy for you during pregnancy.
Read on to discover more.
✅ When pregnant, scallops can be a beneficial addition to a balanced diet.
✅ Just be sure to purchase fresh scallops, thoroughly clean them, and prepare them before you eat them.
✅ And if you’d rather skip them while you’re expecting, think about substituting them with other low-mercury seafood.
When scallops are safe to eat while pregnant
A healthy diet during pregnancy should include seafood, according to experts. The American Dietary Guidelines for 2020–2025 As long as you choose fish and shellfish with low mercury content, Trusted Source and the Food and Drug Administration advise 8 to 12 ounces of seafood each week. That is around three servings.
If you’re expecting or nursing, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists also advises eating two to three servings of different kinds of fish each week, being careful to steer clear of fish with a higher mercury concentration.
Scallops are on that list of healthy options, along with seafood including shrimp, salmon, herring, and clams. And it is true that they frequently contain little mercury. Your baby’s developing brain may be harmed by mercury. The mercury concentration in larger species like sharks, king mackerel, tilefish, and swordfish is generally higher.
Scallops can therefore be a delicious, nutrient-dense, and protein-rich meal if they are prepared and cooked correctly. Make sure the scallops are cooked through to a minimum internal temperature of 145°F (63°C) if you are the one doing the cooking. It’s possible that this is different from how you’re used to eating scallops.
When scallops shouldn’t be eaten while pregnant
However, there are situations when you would want to respectfully decline the scallops while grinning. For instance, if pan-seared scallops are tempting you on the menu at a restaurant, you should definitely choose something else. This is why.
Because scallops stay soft when pan-seared, this cooking technique is highly well-liked. With this technique, the scallops are cooked over extremely high heat very quickly. They only require a minute or two of cooking, thus the interiors are usually still largely raw.
You probably know what’s coming, don’t you? If at all possible, avoid eating raw seafood. Like other types of raw seafood, scallops can carry bacteria or other poisons that can be quite sickening.
Additionally, you ought to stay away from scallops that come from waters that are known to be toxic. The danger is simply not worth it.
How to prepare scallops at home safely
Scallops taste best when prepared and consumed the same day they are purchased. It’s important to prepare ahead of time to avoid just putting them on a shelf in the refrigerator and forgetting about them until you discover them a week later. (Also, don’t place them in water in the refrigerator.)
Make sure to give them a good cleaning before cooking. Rinse them carefully with cold water and then pat them dry.
Cooking scallops completely is important when you’re pregnant. If cooked improperly, scallops, like several other types of seafood, can become rather rubbery. (Okay, if you don’t cook them properly, they can become very rubbery.) So you might need to think outside the box here.
Scallops can be grilled or baked rather than pan-seared. These techniques will be more likely to guarantee that the scallops are fully cooked. However, if you truly want pan-seared scallops, you can cook them for an additional 2 minutes on each side in the pan. However, be aware that it’s very simple to unintentionally overcook them, which results in toughness.
Benefits of scallops during pregnancy
Omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin B12, both of which are helpful for your baby’s brain development, may be found in abundance in scallops. Even preventing preterm birth may be aided by omega-3s.
Additionally, magnesium, which has anti-inflammatory properties, and potassium, which assists in controlling bodily fluids and performs other vital processes like muscle contractions and nerve signals, are present in scallops. Significant concentrations of trace minerals like selenium, copper, and zinc are present in them and are crucial for your personal health.
The next time you stroll by the seafood department at the grocery store, check out the supply of scallops. You might notice sea scallops, which are larger and taken from the ocean, as well as bay scallops, which are smaller and found in shallower areas. Pay attention to the smell before making your decision. Put them back if they seem to have an odd smell or seem a touch “off.”
Pay attention to allergies. Shellfish allergies are more common in adults than other types of food allergies, and scallops fall under this category.
Signs that your scallops were hazardous
How can you know if you ate scallops that you probably shouldn’t have? You could learn quite rapidly from your body. After eating scallops, pay attention to any tingling you get in your lips or mouth. That is one of the symptoms of an allergic reaction to a meal; in this instance, an allergic reaction to the scallops would be indicated.
Additional typical indications of an allergic reaction include:
After eating scallops, if you suffer any of these symptoms, you could be experiencing an allergic response. Inform your physician.
If you consume food that was improperly prepared or undercooked, you could potentially have additional symptoms. All those uncomfortable digestive symptoms, such as nausea, cramping in the stomach, vomiting, and diarrhea, could be a signal of food poisoning or a parasite or bacterial infection. Get in touch with your doctor if this occurs.