Can Pregnant Woman Eat Clam Chowder? Benefits & Risks

clam chowder during pregnancy
clam chowder during pregnancy

Seafood can be an important part of people’s diet because they have unique properties that are very different from other foods. Oyster is one of the popular seafood that is consumed in different ways.

clam chowder at a glance

Various dishes can be prepared with edible sea creatures. One of these popular dishes is clam chowder. To cook it, they usually use oysters, vegetables, shallots, and meat. Everyone prepares this soup based on their interests and tastes, for example, someone eats this chowder watery and uses water or tomatoes to cook it, or another person is interested in thick soup and prepares it with milk or cream.

Is it safe to eat clam chowder while pregnant?

Pregnancy is a very sensitive stage and it is usually dangerous to eat food in raw form, and oysters are no exception, but if they are fully cooked, it is safe to eat them during this period. The reason for emphasizing not to consume raw oysters is the presence of bacteria in them, which causes poisoning in living organisms, especially humans. Oysters containing poisonous bacteria are no different from other oysters in terms of appearance and taste, and the heat when cooking oysters will destroy pathogenic and dangerous factors.

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precaution before eating clam chowder during pregnancy

1. Avoid eating raw meat

The use of raw materials, especially raw meat and shellfish, in preparing soup is dangerous because they may contain parasites and pathogenic agents, such as listeriosis, toxoplasmosis, or salmonella, whose infectious diseases pose a threat to the fetus with a developing and imperfect immune system. And the possibility of birth defects and miscarriage increases.

2. Avoid consuming seafood containing mercury

Most seafood contains levels of mercury that vary among species, for example, in some of them this level is so high that it puts the nervous system of the fetus in serious danger. Canned fish has less mercury than white fish.

3. Observe safety in all stages of preparing a seafood dish

The steps of preparing and producing seafood must be done carefully, for example, carefully wash the equipment you use when preparing raw meat and fish after work. Use special equipment for preparing fish, leave excess and uneaten parts in a low temperature such as the refrigerator so that it does not spoil and spoil, or do not leave seafood at room temperature for more than 1-2 hours.

Is it safe to eat cooked oysters during pregnancy?

Eating cooked oysters during pregnancy does not pose any risk because the heat of cooking destroys bacteria and possible pathogens in raw oysters. There is a type of bacteria in saltwater that is present in most raw oysters. One of the great ways to consume cooked oysters is clam chowder.

You can use a cooking thermometer to ensure that your food has reached a sufficient temperature to kill pathogens.

Now What When Pregnant ?

What should be observed when cooking oysters during pregnancy?

  1. Oysters must be completely closed after cooking, otherwise, avoid consuming them.
  2. Wash the oysters well with water before cooking.
  3. Sometimes it is necessary to put the oysters in a salt water solution for a while so that the small seeds are separated from them and come out.
  4. The temperature for cooking them must be adjusted carefully.

Oysters contain mercury like other sea creatures, but the mercury in oysters is much less than in fish and other sea creatures. One thing that should not be forgotten is where the oysters are grown, which makes a big difference in their mercury levels. Therefore, before preparing and consuming oysters, it is better to do the necessary investigations on the amount of mercury pollution in the water of that area, and in case of a high level of pollution, use cultivated oysters in areas where water pollutants are continuously monitored.

What is the Risks of eating calm chowder during pregnancy?

Eating oysters whether in broth or soup or any other way is only suitable for pregnant women, provided that they are not raw. But if you use oyster soup, if you use milk or cream, they must be pasteurized.

Can I use oyster juice in clam chowder while pregnant?

Consuming oyster juice is one of the ways to benefit from its properties, as long as it is prepared by a commercial method.

Can I use fried oysters?

Frying oysters is another type of cooking, during which if the oysters get the necessary heat and are cooked well, it is harmless to consume during pregnancy. However, in this case, large oysters should be cut in half so that all parts of them receive the necessary heat.

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Stuffed oysters are another method of serving oysters, in this way, the inside of the oyster is filled with ingredients and you pour cheese or breadcrumbs on it and cook it well. The ingredients on the oyster must also receive the necessary heat.


Seafood can provide many essential nutrients in the body while being very popular. Oysters are one of these foods that some people like to eat in abundance. Oysters contain small amounts of mercury, and if they are not raw, they will not be dangerous during pregnancy, and calm chowder is one of the most popular oyster foods.

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