Can You Eat Oysters While Pregnant

Can you eat oysters while pregnant has become the most research questions asked by young American women. Pregnancy is a journey that can cause many changes to the body of a woman. It could be body changes, heightened sense of smell or even food cravings. You may be craving for many foods and oysters can be one of them. Also, many people enjoy eating seafoods like snails, periwinkles, crabs, lobsters and oysters. 


This is the question many people ask. The answer is yes, it is okay and safe to eat oysters while pregnant. But there are preparation methods of cooking oysters that are not suitable for a pregnant woman. It is not safe to eat raw or smoked oysters. 

This is because there are some preparation methods that do not enhanced properly cook foods inorder to kill the bacteria and viruses in them. Methods like smoked oysters or eating them raw are not safe for consumption for a pregnant woman.

Oysters live in water and are omnivores that is they feed on bacteria, algae and other small organisms, they also eat sea grasses. Because of the mode of their nutrition, oysters are already filled and contaminated with bacteria and viruses that can cause illness when taken into the body. 

Remember that when you are pregnant, your body becomes easily accessible to germs, bacteria and viruses because your immune system has become suppressed and low. Since oysters have some bacteria like vibrio and listeria. When these bacteria are taken into the body, they cause diseases like vibrosis and listeriosis and can result to other complications like birth defects, miscarriage or stillbirth. This post ” Can you eat oysters while pregnant” is recommended for all.


Can You Eat Oysters While Pregnant
Can You Eat Oysters While Pregnant

If you must eat oysters when you are pregnant, it is important to eat the ones that are throughly cooked. This is not only limited to oysters but to every fish and seafoods. It is advised to properly cook every seafood so as to destroy the bacteria and viruses that can be harmful and unsafe for you and your baby.

You must cook your fish to a temperature of 145 degrees .You can use cooking methods like boiling, frying, baking and broiling. If you must cook oysters at home, be sure to take precautions in order to avoid cross-contamination.

Cross-contamination occurs when bacteria and micro-organisms are transferred from one substance or surface to another. Oysters already may have bacteria in them so you should wash your hands very well with soap and water. Also, it is not advised that you should touch your face after touching raw oysters.

Cook oysters immediately you buy them as refrigerating them can increase the chances of more bacteria infesting on them. Be sure to buy fresh oysters too. If you will be frying, boiling or broiling your oyster, it is advised that you boil it for at least 5 minutes to kill the germs and bacteria. 


Oysters are beneficial to both the mother and baby. Some of the benefits you will derived in eating oysters are : 

(1) It contains zinc nutrient

There are more zinc nutrients in oysters than any other food and zinc is very important to a pregnant woman. This is because during pregnancy, the body needs to rapidly build new cells that make up the baby’s cells and DNA.

It also prevents issues like intra-uterine infections and help to maintain a strong immune system. Pregnancy makes the body to need about 11 milligrams of zinc a day as compared to the normal 8 milligrams needed. 

(2) Low in Mercury

Almost all seafoods have issues of mercury contamination due to their habitat. Oysters have low mercury in them, hence, they are safe for consumption by pregnant women.

Contains Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 is very essential because it helps in developing the brain of the fetus and other statutory functions. It is also needed for the maintainance of the nervous system and keeping of the blood cells healthy. When you lack vitamin b12 which is called cobalamin, it can lead to fetal growth restrictions. This nutrient is found in oyster.

(3) DHA and omega-3 fatty acids

Oysters are good sources of omega-3 fatty acids and docosahexaenoic acid ( DHA ). The DHA can help prevent preterm labour or delivery, increase the weight of the baby and help in the eye and brain development. 

(4) It contains Iron

Iron is found in seafoods especially oysters. The body needs more iron for up to 50 percent because iron is required to make enough blood to supply to both the mother and the fetus. The iron in oysters are used to make blood which also supply oxygen to the baby. Lack of iron can lead to iron deficiency anemia.

(5) It contains Choline

Choline is important because it improves how the liver functions, placenta growth and fetal development. This nutrient found in oyster help in fetus overall development.


Oysters are seafoods that can be eaten while pregnant. However, safety precautions should be taken like the preparation methods. But it is advised to take 2 to 3 servings each week because of the mercury which can be harmful when present in large quantity. The question “Can you eat oysters while pregnant” has affirmitive answer of yes, in as much as the oyster is well cooked and prepared to kill all the harmful bacteria.

However, if you are not a fan of oyster but want to nutrients in them, there are other alternatives for you. You can go for salmon, peanuts, pumpkin seeds, sardines, herrings or fish oil if they are certified by your doctor.

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