In spite of seafood being extremely nutritious, they are advised to be avoided during pregnancy. All because of the possibility of the high content of mercury present in them. However, crab is an exception to this possibility of contamination and therefore eating crabs during pregnancy is safe and can be consumed without any fear. Just cook it properly and consume in moderation as moderation is the key to a healthy pregnancy.
Benefits of Eating Crab in Pregnancy:
1. Crabs Help in Preventing Anaemia:
Crabs have high nutritional value and thus have an optimum amount of Vitamin B12. This nutrient is needed for producing red blood cells in the body. This helps in preventing anaemia among pregnant women. Thus eating crab while pregnant is beneficial as it stimulates red blood cells in your body.
2. Crabs Contain Folate:
Along with the intake of vegetables and fruits, it is also very important to add folate to your diet. The kind of health benefits that folate offer is best for a pregnant woman. Intake of folate helps in preventing any defects in the neural tube. Folate contains vitamin B9 thus can work wonders for you during pregnancy.
3. Crabs Help In Lowering Heart Disease Related Risks:
Crabs are also a good source of omega-3 fatty acids. These acids are essential for fetal neurodevelopment. It is also essential at the time of birth. It helps in lowering fats in the blood and also lowers any risks related to heart diseases. Omega-3 fatty acids are also beneficial in preventing any risks associated with stroke.
4. Crabs Contain Magnesium:
Crabs are full of essential nutrients and one of them being magnesium. For those of you thinking can I eat crab when pregnant, your answer is a definite yes. This is one such mineral that the body cannot manufacture and thus you need to include it in your diet in abundance. It enables the normal functioning of the nerves and muscles in the body.
5. Helps Combating Hypertension:
The presence of magnesium in crabs helps to fight hypertension. A pregnant woman usually tends to have a high level of tension and stress during this period. Hence it is essentially important to combat hypertension for you and your baby’s health. It is very much needed to be, and control tension and crabs enable you to remain one.
6. Facilitates Growth of The Baby:
There is a good amount of folate and protein content in crabs. This induces the overall development and growth of the baby. It also helps in improving the efficiency of the immune system of the pregnant mother. Thus intake of kekada during pregnancy is very beneficial for the expecting mother.
7. Rich In Iron Content:
Crabs are very rich in iron content and thus are a good source of iron supply for expecting mothers. It increases the quantity of haemoglobin in the body. It also ensures the immunity power of pregnant women. The increase in immunity efficiency enables healthy childbirth. Thus you should include crab in your diet while being pregnant.
8. Provides Calcium:
Crabs also have a good amount of calcium content. Calcium helps in strengthening of bones in the body. It also helps in the development of the bones of the baby. And, It also is beneficial for the development of teeth, muscles, nerves and ears. It also ensures good quality of breast milk during the lactation period.
9. Fights Depression:
Crabs contain omega-3 fatty acids which help to combat depression. It helps in decreasing symptoms of depression in a pregnant woman. Thus no more do you need to wonder can pregnant women eat crab or not as you definitely can. If you feel depressed due to the excess level of stress and tension during pregnancy, intake of crabs can benefit you.
10. Good Nutritional Value:
Crabs, as you would already know, have a lot of good nutritional value. They are rich in protein, fatty acids, calcium, zinc, copper, manganese, iron and many other nutrients. These nutrients help in the well-being of the expecting mother and her baby. Thus it is completely safe to consume crab for pregnant.
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Things to know Before Eating Crabs During Pregnancy:
A. Only King crabs – Always:
The quantum of mercury content varies in different crabs. The King crabs are the ones that have the lowest quantum of mercury in them and the safest for consumption during pregnancy. The other types of crabs such as blue crab or snow crab contain a high amount of mercury, and it should be avoided during pregnancy.
B. Say No to frozen crab:
Frozen crabs are not the right choice when it comes to crab meat. The crabs when preserved sometimes cause the bacteria to stay there only. However, the research shows that canned crabs or sealed crabs are safe for consumption.
C. Avoid Raw/Undercooked Crab Meat:
It is essential to avoid having raw or undercooked crab meat. Raw intake of crab meat is more likely to have bacteria or parasites in it. Its consumption can lead to different illnesses which are foodborne like listeriosis, toxoplasmosis and also salmonella. The illness might result in miscarriage and congenital disabilities.
D. Be Very Picky:
It is very important to be very picky and choosy while buying seafood and crabs are one of them. You should only buy crabs which are of very good quality and is not stale. You should also buy fresh ones, which have been recently taken out of the sea. Thus you should only opt for high-quality fresh ones.
E. Prepare Well:
Along with quality, it is also essential to prepare well. You should not consume undercooked crabs as they might bring in bacteria. It is advisable to consume seafood when they are fresh and piping hot. You should also avoid having refrigerated crabs during pregnancy. You can also put in nutritious vegetables along with crabs to increase the nutritional value of the food item.
F. Handle Crabs In A Hygienic Way:
You need to take proper precautions while making crabs. All the utensils and cutleries should be properly washed before and after preparing crabs. You should also use separate cutting boards and knives while handling raw seafood. You should be careful while storing seafood as it should be stored in proper conditions.
G. Consult With Doctor Whether Seafood Would Suit You:
It is very important to consult with a doctor before consuming any kind of seafood and crabs are one of them. It necessarily does not suit everyone and might give rise to various body allergies and other illnesses. Thus it is recommended to visit a doctor before consuming crabs.
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The Recommended Quantity of Crab to Eat During Pregnancy?
Though the king crabs are safe for consumption during pregnancy, it doesn’t mean that you can have it to your heart’s content during pregnancy. Ideally, you should consume crabs maximum twice a week which should not be more than 170g in aggregate. Other varieties of crab should be best avoided.
Lip-smacking Crab Meat Recipes for Pregnant Women:
1. Crab Cakes:
Consuming crab cakes during pregnancy is a treat to your mouth. Here is how you can make the same.
- Dried breadcrumbs.
- Canola Oil.
- Crab meat – drained and flaked.
- Onion powder.
- Dry mustard.
- Worcestershire sauce.
- Lemon juice.
- Egg whites.
- Hot pepper sauce.
- Green onions.
- Diced bell pepper.
- Heat oil in a pan and add crab cakes one after another with sufficient space to turn the cakes. Roast it till golden brown and flip over to roast the other side.
- Add crab meat and toss it again. Take some portion of this mixture in your hand and roll it into balls. Press these balls to make tiny cakes and keep them aside.
- Now take a bowl and add breadcrumbs, bell pepper, coriander, onion greens, onion powder, dry mustard, lime juice, egg whites, mayonnaise, and Worcestershire sauce and mix it well.
- Take a large plate and layer it with bread crumbs. Put the crab cakes in it and roll it over to completely cover the crab cakes with the mixture. Repeat the procedure for all the other cakes.
- Take a frying pan and add oil to it.
- Deep fry all the cakes till golden brown.
- Strain the cakes on a tissue paper to drain the excess oil.
- Savour the delicious crab cakes.
2. Chicken Breast Stuffed with Crab Meat:
- Chicken breast – skinless and boneless
- Fresh crab meat
- Soft cream cheese
- Minced onion
- Minced garlic
- Vegetable oil
- Beaten eggs
- Salt and pepper
- Take a large bowl. Add cream cheese, minced onion, minced garlic, lemon pepper and mix it well. Add crab meat and again give it a nice mix.
- Refrigerate this mixture for a couple of hours.
- Make horizontal cuts in the chicken breasts so that space is created to add the stuffing to it. Get the stuffing out from the refrigerator and stuff the chicken breasts.
- Take a large plate and spread it with breadcrumbs. Take another plate and place it with maida and in another bowl take eggs.
- Now dip the stuffed chicken breasts in the eggs then roll it in maida and then finally roll it in bread crumbs so that each side of the chicken breasts is properly covered with breadcrumbs.
- Take a frying pan. Add some butter and oil to it. Shallow fry the chicken breasts from each side till golden brown.
- Serve hot by garnishing with coriander.
Crab meat is not only delicious, and a treat for the seafood lovers but is also very nutritious for the pregnant women. It gives a boost to the baby’s growth and must be included in the pregnancy diet. However, add it moderation and take proper precaution in choosing the right crab meat and consume only after properly cooking the same.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q1. Is it safe to eat crab during pregnancy?
Ans: Although the amount of mercury in crab is absolutely low, it doesn’t mean that you crab to your heart’s content. In pregnancy, moderation is the key. King crabs have the lowest quantity of mercury in them, and hence they are safest for consumption during pregnancy. Other varieties of crabs such as blue crabs and snow crabs are best avoided as they contain a high quantity of mercury in them.
Q2. Can you eat crab rangoons while pregnant?
Ans: Crab is the imitation crabs. They are also cooked and hence safe for consumption during pregnancy. However, the crab rangoons are low in Omega-3 fatty acids which are vital for the baby’s growth and a must during pregnancy. Otherwise, the crab rangoons are just like real crabs when it comes to proteins and other nutrients.
Q3. Can you eat raw crab in pregnancy?
Ans: Raw seafood including crabs can prove risky for a normal individual leave aside a pregnant woman. The raw crab should never be consumed during pregnancy.