can you eat crab while pregnant

  Given that Crab is well-known, delicious, and a lean source of protein, it’s understandable that many pregnant women want to know if they can consume it safely. Because shellfish and seafood can be perplexing for pregnant women concerned about what they can and cannot eat, I conducted extensive research on all crab meat varieties, including imitation crab.

Is It Safe to Eat Crab While Pregnant? Pregnant women can consume any crab meat (including legs and claws) as long as it is thoroughly cooked and fresh. Consumption of imitation crab is also generally safe during pregnancy. Specific crab preparations may require an inspection before consumption while pregnant.

Crab is a highly versatile ingredient that appears in a wide variety of recipes. Furthermore, numerous crab species exist. I conducted extensive research for this article to ensure that you receive the most comprehensive information possible about eating all types of Crab while pregnant.

Crab Consumption in Pregnancy: The Healthiest Method.

Crabmeat is safe to consume if it has been thoroughly cooked and consumed immediately after cooking. Avoid raw or undercooked Crab during pregnancy due to the risk of foodborne illness.

Given that no one enjoys raw Crab (even those not pregnant! ), the undercooked variety should be avoided. This is particularly true for larger crab species, as the Crab will take longer to cook the larger it is. Always verify the specified cooking times in any crab recipe.

Due to the short shelf life of Crab (cooked Crab only lasts about three days in the refrigerator), here are some tips for selecting and eating crab meat while pregnant: 

  • This is a good idea if you’re eating ‘fresh dressed’ Crab, as well as crab meat on sandwiches, subs, or as a topping for crabmeat.
  • Cooked crab meat should be opaque and pearly, not translucent or slimy. Fresh crab meat should have a subtle sweetness to it. Anything that has a sour or fishy smell could indicate a problem.
  • When purchasing fresh Crab for self-cooking, choose specimens that have been stored correctly in a clean tank and are still alive and moving. Dead and uncooked crabs deteriorate rapidly and should be avoided.
  • Shelf-stable crab meat (often called jumbo lump crab meat or something similar) is canned crab meat that is not refrigerated. This is typically pasteurized and perfectly safe to consume. Refrigerate and consume within a few days after opening.
  • Crabmeat that has not been pasteurized is occasionally packaged in cans or tubs and kept refrigerated or on ice. This is still safe to eat, but treat it similarly to fresh Crab – check and adhere to the “use-by” dates.

Is Crab High in Mercury?

In comparison to other seafood and fish, Crab contains very little mercury. According to the FDA, average mercury levels in Crab (Blue, King, and Snow) are 0.065 parts per million, one of the lowest levels found in seafood.

The Environmental Defense Fund’s ‘Seafood Selector’ classifies several crab species as “low mercury,” including the king, blue, stone, snow, Dungeness, and southern tanner. Crab is an excellent choice for pregnant women because it contains little mercury.

Is It Safe for Pregnant Women to Consume a Certain Quantity of Crab?

Pregnant women in the United States of America are advised to consume 8-12 oz (3-4 servings) of various fish and seafood per week. Due to its low mercury content, Crab is one of their best options.

The NHS recommends Crab as a type of seafood to consume during pregnancy in the United Kingdom but does not specify an upper limit. Pregnant women can theoretically consume up to 12 oz (340 g) of Crab per week. Still, it is much better to consume a variety of fish to benefit from a diverse nutritional profile rather than a single type.

Is Consuming Crab Safe During Pregnancy?

Crab is a high-protein, low-calorie food (approximately 75 calories per 3 oz/85 g serving). Vitamin B12, calcium, folate, zinc, and phosphorous are present in significant amounts (source: Precision Nutrition).

According to the FDA, Crab is one of the ‘best choices for a healthy pregnancy diet.

Keep in mind that how the Crab is served makes a significant difference. It can be a lean source of protein if freshly steamed and served with a light dressing.

If you bake it with a lot of cheese, mayonnaise, or butter, you’ll increase the calories and fat content. Dress it with herbs and vegetables and use it as a wrap or salad topping.

Crabs can be high in sodium or cholesterol, depending on the species. This is usually not an issue if you consume Crab only a few times a week. On the other hand, if you are watching your sodium/salt intake or cholesterol levels, consult your physician before eating Crab.

Is it safe to consume crab claws and crab legs during pregnancy?

Pregnant women are not restricted to white and brown crab meat harvested from the main body of the Crab.

Consuming crab claws and crab legs while pregnant is safe, provided the legs and feet have been thoroughly cooked (see above for more advice on this).

Is It Safe to Consume All Crab Species While Pregnant?

I frequently receive inquiries about the various crab species and whether or not they are all safe to consume during pregnancy. Other crabs are consumed throughout the world, depending on what is available near the coast (or what gets shipped in).

To be specific, all of the following crab species are safe to consume while pregnant as long as the crab meat is thoroughly cooked:

Brown Crab: extremely popular throughout the United Kingdom, Europe, the North Sea, and the Mediterranean. Additionally, the term ‘edible crab’ is used.

Blue Crab: Also known as the ‘Chesapeake Crab,’ this Crab is primarily found on the United States of America’s East Coast.

Dungeness Crab: a species of Crab that is abundant along the west coasts of North America.

The King Crab (also known as the Red King Crab or Alaskan King Crab) is a species of Crab that is frequently found in cold waters such as the North Pacific.

The Stone Crab, also called the Florida Stone Crab, is renowned for its massive claws in the western North Atlantic.

The term “SoftShell Crab” does not refer to a specific species; instead, it relates to crabs that have shed their hard shells but retained their softshells. Typically, these are Blue Crabs in the United States of America.

Snow Crab: alternatively referred to as Opilio Crab – is well-known for its large, long legs and is frequently served or purchased separately.

Previously called the Maine Rock Crab or Sand Crab, the Peekytoe Crab was referred to as the Peekytoe Crab. Quite scarce, but extremely valuable for its meat.

Horseshoe Crab: Although technically not a crab, this species is scarce outside of Asia. However, if cooked properly, they are edible and safe to consume.

  Given that Crab is well-known, delicious, and a lean source of protein, it’s understandable that many pregnant women want to know if they can consume it safely. Because…

  Given that Crab is well-known, delicious, and a lean source of protein, it’s understandable that many pregnant women want to know if they can consume it safely. Because…

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