Say No to Fish for 5 Years Earlier than Being pregnant 


Advisories telling pregnant ladies to chop down on fish consumption could also be too late for sure persistent pollution. 

In the event you deliberately expose folks to mercury by feeding them fish (like tuna) for 14 weeks, the extent of mercury of their bloodstream goes up, as you possibly can see within the graph under and at 0:14 in my video Avoiding Fish for Five Years Before Pregnancy. As quickly as they stop consuming fish, it drops again down such that they’ll detox by half in about 100 days. (So, the half-life of complete mercury in our blood is roughly 100 days.) Even in case you eat numerous fish, inside just a few months of stopping, you possibly can clear a lot of the mercury out of your blood. However what about your mind? 

The outcomes from modeling research are all over, providing “some excessive estimates (69 days vs. 22 years).” When put to the take a look at, although, post-mortem findings counsel the half-life could also be even longer nonetheless at 27.4 years. As soon as mercury will get in our brains, it may be many years earlier than our physique can do away with even half of it. So, higher than detoxing shouldn’t be “toxing” within the first place. 

That’s the issue with advisories that tell pregnant ladies to chop down on fish consumption. For pollution with lengthy half-lives, corresponding to PCBs and dioxins, “momentary fish advisory-related decreases in every day contaminant consumption is not going to essentially translate to considerable decreases in maternal POP [persistent organic pollutant] physique burdens,” which assist decide the dose the newborn will get. 

Take into account this: As you possibly can see within the graph under and at 1:32 in my video, an toddler could also be exposed to a tumor-promoting pollutant referred to as PCB 153 if their mother ate fish. But when mother ate solely half the fish or no fish in any respect for one yr, ranges wouldn’t budge a lot. A considerable drop in toddler publicity ranges might solely be seen if the mother had lower out all fish for 5 years earlier than getting pregnant. That is the “fish consumption caveat.” “[T]he solely eventualities that produced a big influence on kids’s exposures required moms to remove fish from their diets for five years earlier than their kids have been conceived. The mannequin predicted that substituting produce for fish would scale back prenatal and breastfeeding exposures by 37% every and subsequent childhood exposures by 23%.” So, “a whole ban on fish consumption could also be preferable to focused, life stage–based mostly fish consumption advisories…” 

If you’ll eat fish, although, which is much less polluted—wild-caught or farmed fish? In a current research, researchers measured the degrees of pesticides, corresponding to DDT, PCBs, polycyclic fragrant hydrocarbons, and poisonous parts, corresponding to mercury and lead, in a big pattern of farmed and wild-caught seafood. Normally, they discovered that farmed fish have been worse. Consider the suspect as farmed and harmful. The measured ranges of most natural and plenty of inorganic pollution have been larger within the farmed seafood merchandise and, consequently, so have been the consumption ranges for the buyer if such merchandise have been consumed. For instance, as you possibly can see within the graphs under and at 3:09 in my video, there was considerably extra contamination by polycyclic hydrocarbons, persistent pesticides, and PCBs in all the farmed fish samples, together with the salmon and seabass (although it didn’t appear to matter for crayfish), and the wild-caught mussels have been really worse. In the event you break up grownup and youngster shoppers into these solely consuming farmed seafood or solely consuming wild-caught seafood, the extent of pollutant publicity was considerably worse with the farmed seafood.  

General, the researchers, who have been Spanish, investigated a complete of 59 pollution and poisonous parts. They concluded: “Taking all these information as an entire, and based mostly on the charges of consumption of fish and seafood of the Spanish inhabitants, our outcomes point out {that a} theoretical shopper who selected to devour solely aquaculture [farmed] merchandise could be uncovered to ranges of pollution investigated about twice larger than if this theoretical shopper had chosen solely merchandise from extractive fisheries [wild-caught fish].” So, on the subject of pollution, you might eat twice the quantity of fish in case you caught to wild-caught. That’s simpler stated than achieved, although. Mislabeling charges for fish and different seafood in the USA are between 30 and 38 p.c, so the common fraud charge is round one in three.  

In my earlier video on this matter, How Long to Detox from Fish Before Pregnancy, I discussed a research that means detoxing from fish for one yr to decrease mercury ranges, however different pollution take longer to depart our system. 

For optimum mind improvement, think about a pollutant-free supply of omega-3 fatty acids. Try Should Vegan Women Supplement with DHA during Pregnancy?. 

Apart from pollution, there are different causes we might need to keep away from extreme quantities of animal protein. See Flashback Friday: The Effect of Animal Protein on Stress Hormones, Testosterone, and Pregnancy.

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