by Monica Reinagel, M.S., L.D./N.
Q. Pregnancy is (hopefully!) imminent for me and I was hoping you could advise on the best way to get omega-3s in my diet. You’ve said that fish are the most potent source of omega-3, but I also hear warnings about eating too much fish during pregnancy because of concerns about mercury. How do I balance these two things?
A. DHA is the omega-3 that’s particularly important for a baby’s brain development—and you’re right: Fish are by far the most potent source. Research shows that the benefits of eating fish during pregnancy far outweigh any concerns about mercury. And, as it happens, most of the fish that are highest in DHA are also low in mercury. Salmon, anchovies, herring, and sardines all fit the bill. A couple servings a week should cover both you and baby. If that's more fish than you feel like eating, you can also take a DHA supplement. (Check in with your OB about dosage.)
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Raw salmon fillet from Shutterstock