The FDA and the Environmental Protection Agency co-issued a warning in 2001 that pregnant women should eat less than 12 ounces of fish per week because of the dangers of mercury contamination. This warning was reissued in 2004.
Recently a group of nutrition experts led by the Maternal Nutrition Group And the National Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition made a recommendation that pregnant women should eat at the least 12 ounces of seafood per week a direct contradiction to the FDA recommendations.
The new recommendation is based on the fact that fish are a critical source of omega-3 essential free fatty assets, most importantly, DHA and EPA, which are critical to the development of the brain in the fetal period. The groups also stated that the scientific evidence suggests that the consumption of these essential fatty and said leads to improved visual, cognitive, motor and behavioral skills that last well into childhood. Others remain adamant that seafood, especially the so-called "top predators" such as tuna and swordfish accumulate high levels of toxins.
While the two sides of the debate argue about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, I will have to state the obvious; high-quality fish oil supplements contain undetectable levels of mercury and are a simple, beneficial, inexpensive method to make sure we have smarter and better children.