Eating Fish: What You Should Know This National Seafood Month
(UNITED STATES, 10/25/2019)
October is National Seafood Month and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is launching resources that make it easy for pregnant and breastfeeding women and parents of young children to eat more fish and make choices lower in mercury.
FDA has released four new photonovels—or comic-style, graphic stories—that share information about eating fish while pregnant and why including fish in children's diets is important for their growth and development.
Eating Fish: A Guide for Hispanic American Families (available in English and Spanish) and Eating Fish: A Guide for Chinese American Families (available in English and Chinese) also include FDA and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) updated advice on eating fish that is especially important for women who are or might become pregnant, breastfeeding mothers, as well as young children.
Best choices, Good choices and Choices to avoid.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to choosing healthy and safe fish options:
Fish are part of a healthy eating pattern. Fish provide protein, healthy omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins B12 and D, iron, and other minerals like selenium, zinc, and iodine. Fish can have nutritional benefits for children's growth during pregnancy and childhood. And, as part of a healthy eating pattern, eating fish may also offer heart health benefits and lower the risk of obesity.
Choose a variety of fish that are lower in mercury. It is important to limit mercury in the diets of women who are pregnant and breastfeeding and young children, and there are many types of fish that are both nutritious and lower in mercury. This chart can help you choose which fish to eat and how often to eat them, based on their mercury levels.
Avoid raw fish. Raw fish is not recommended for pregnant women or young children, as they often have weaker immune systems and are more at risk for foodborne illnesses. It is recommended that pregnant women and young children only eat foods with fish, meat, poultry, or eggs that have been cooked to safe internal temperatures.
The photonovels share information about eating fish while pregnant.
About the FDA
The Food and Drug Administration is responsible for protecting the public health by ensuring the safety, efficacy, and security of human and veterinary drugs, biological products, and medical devices; and by ensuring the safety of our nation's food supply, cosmetics, and products that emit radiation.
FDA also has responsibility for regulating the manufacturing, marketing, and distribution of tobacco products to protect the public health and to reduce tobacco use by minors.
FDA is responsible for advancing the public health by helping to speed innovations that make medical products more effective, safer, and more affordable and by helping the public get the accurate, science-based information they need to use medical products and foods to maintain and improve their health.
FDA also plays a significant role in the Nation's counterterrorism capability. FDA fulfills this responsibility by ensuring the security of the food supply and by fostering development of medical products to respond to deliberate and naturally emerging public health threats.