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Tuna eating Pregnant women...

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
I just read in a nursing journal I get that the FDA put out a warning on tuna.

Pregnant women and women of child baring age need to limit their canned tuna intake to 12 ounces a wek of "regular tuna" and 6 ounces a week of Albacore tuna.
The independant study group who informed the FDA about the mercury risk suggested even half of that for regular tuna nad no albacore tuna at all.
The reason is the tunas that are canned are large and there for older and have higher mercury levels, then smaller "fresh" tunas.
They also said if the whole fish can fit on a dinner plate it is OK to eat, but the larger it gets the more mergury it has.

Just thought I would let you all know, cuz canned tuna is such an easy protien sorce and cheep.

post #2 of 18
Yep, makes me very sad because right before that information started to come out, dh and I canned 100 lbs of fresh albacore . It's now sitting in our pantry, and will remain uneaten until, well, probably until we decided we're done having children. That's the other important bit of information - mercury has a very long half-life, and can stay in your system for over a year. So, if you're even thinking about getting pregnant you shouldn't eat tuna either.
post #3 of 18
I just saw a guy on the View talking about fish and mercury and he talked about this very thing. He said no albacore for pregnant women, cause it was way too high in mercury. But, he said canned LIGHT tuna was just fine because it had very low levels. Just thought I'd throw that in.
post #4 of 18
I heard about the mercury warnings a few years ago and simply stopped eating tuna altogether. I REALLY miss it and have been craving it a lot throughout my pregnancy, but the risk is too great for me to chance it. I know there is a lot of conflicting informaiton about it, some say it's okay, but it's one of those things that I have a gut feeling about, so I refrain.

post #5 of 18
i never eat albacore anyway.

Tongol is smaller fish and quite safe. I eat it because it is much less expensive than albacore. In the US it is required to be clasified "light" tuna, but it just as white in color as albacore, if that matters at all, it doesnt to me though.

Its hard to know how to respond to these warnings and studies... these are the same people that think its ok to put thimeresol in nose spray and vaccines.

post #6 of 18
Tuna is my favorite food and it has been sooooooooo hard for me to give it up. I have a half a sandwich once a week now. I used to eat it 4 days a week, even while TTC. (Bad, I know!!!)

I don't eat much fish at all anymore because I am so paranoid about pollutants.
post #7 of 18
Thread Starter 
What I found interesting in the study was that it said that although mercury was a natural element something in the way fish "use" it or "deal" with it in their systems actually makes it more toxic to people. There for the larger the fish the higher the levels of mercury.
The FDA actually changed (well increased) what the independant study group suggested.
Anyway, I was just letting people know. It is always interesting to me what pops up in my nursing journals.

post #8 of 18
Interesting side note....
With my first dc I received WIC at the local health department and was on there breastfeeding voucher program. For those that don't know, WIC is a program for low to lower middle class familys that is supposed to incourage pregnant woman and young children to eat more healthy. You get vouchers that you turn in at almost any food store for things like milk, eggs, dry cereal and so on. Once the baby is born you can either do there formula thing (it pays for your formula and such) or you can do there breast feeding program..
Anyway with my breast feeding vouchers I received several gallons of milk, dry beans, so on so forth and get this several cans of TUNA a month (can not remember exactly how many but I know it was around 6 cans).
I have not participated in WIC since then (7 years ago) but it makes me curious if they still include tuna in there breastfeeding program.......
post #9 of 18
My reactions to the warnings has been to cut out tuna while trying to conceive, and of course now that I'm pregnant. Basically I take anything the EPA recommends and go slightly more conservative.

Mercury may be a naturally occuring element, however the way that it winds up in fish is through mercury emissions in factories. Mercury emissions I might add, that Bush destroyed agreements to reduce.

If you are concerned about this you should also know that any fish high on the food chain is suspect because they eat other fish and the levels of mercury get concentrated. Beware of shark and swordfish.

Farmed Salmon is problematic because it is usually fed a fish meal which artificially moves it up the food chain. Wild Salmon is okay and very healthful.

The current recommendation is to limit all of your seafood consumption to 12 ounces a week, if you are pregnant or tryng to get pregnant.
post #10 of 18
Thread Starter 
It also said that in the article... about the higher in the food chain fish. Sorta like birds of pray and pesticide.
Anyway thanks for the more info.

post #11 of 18
My DH is veg, and I eat *some* fish on occasion and never cook it here-always get it when we're out to eat or something. Maybe 1x/month or so.

Well, I started buying tuna to make sandwiches for myself when I really had a hankoring. Now, I am really worried! I haven't had it for about 2 weeks, but there was a period there where I HAD TO HAVE a tuna sandwich like 2x/week. I had heard some of the reports and just ignored them. Thinking, everything in moderation. UGH! I hope no harm has been done!:
post #12 of 18
I haven't been eating tuna at all this pregnancy, and while nursing before getting pg again I had it very rarely, although I love it, especially albacore. Oh, and forestmama, WIC still includes tuna on vouchers for breastfeeding moms--can be either white or light. Tabitha, that's good to know about tongol tuna. It tastes pretty much like albacore.

Here is a website that lists all fish and shellfish that/are/aren't safe for pg/nursing women and children, which ones should be eaten only occaisonally, which should be avoided all together, etc. It includes a chart that you can print out:


If you click on "Search" and type in fish, links to lots of info will come up. Lots of other useful info on the site as well.
post #13 of 18
I'm a wic praticapant... have with my last two kids and am on the program now. You recive 8 cans of tuna a month while nursing.... and it usally takes a year or more to get anything changed on the program... I'm very worried since i will be nursing on the program for 1 year (that's all they suport nursing for) then my child will get the food program and recive ceral, milk, juice, peanut butter, ect.

When i was watching CNN when it first came out about tuna they also said in adition to tuna pregnant, nursing moms, young children, and those TTC should alos limit the amount of frozen fish of all kinds (including fish sticks, patties, ect) to 1 per week... this inclueds fast food fish. And fish such as sord fish and shark should NEVER be eaten durring this time. I have started to buy the light tuna but not cut it out of my diet. Me and my dh are on a very very tight bugdet and tuna is a chep option for us so i will not cut it out all together (no point... just limit intake). My kids are also fans of breaded fish sticks, ect so i just limit how often i make them to maybe 1-2 times a month. Though i would add this in!!!

SAHM to Austin 4y/o
and abby 22 months,
EDD 8/20/04
post #14 of 18
I gave all the tuna I had away when I read this:

post #15 of 18
Just had to add my two cents - I just read this week in the more current issue of Discover magazine a short blurb about tuna not being as safe as we thought it was. The more I educate myself on certain issues the more I realize the general public is left in the dark and often led in the wrong direction. I have about 15 cans of tuna I'm getting rid of. I just don't want to take a chance with mercury in my system. I'm pregnant and breastfeeding my 13mth old and it's just not an acceptable risk. It's scarey the toxins that get into of food chain and unfortunately there aren't enough knowledgable people to change things very fast.
I'm not a vegetarian right now (yet), but boy, do I plan on making some lifestyle changes soon. Our food chain and factory farming practices are really scarey. But, in todays fast-paced society, it's the bottom line that makes the sale and people want to pay the least amount for products and companies of course want to turn the highest profit - regardless of what is ethically correct. OK, my head is spinning. Lets just say motherhood has made me rethink a lot of things. Now, if I only had the answers......
post #16 of 18
Whew, I was concerned that this thread was about a bizarre trend of pg women being devoured by hungry fish.
post #17 of 18
Originally posted by JodynJupiter
Whew, I was concerned that this thread was about a bizarre trend of pg women being devoured by hungry fish.
post #18 of 18
JodynJupiter - It is nice to see that not everyone on this board has to be so serious all the time.
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