In a study led by Harvard’s Dr. Emily Oken, researchers concluded that Moms-to-be who ate fish high in Omega 3 fatty acids birthed babies with higher cognitive functions as compared to Moms who avoided seafood.
Conversely, the study also found that the amount of mercury in a woman’s body rose with the amount of fish she had consumed. Children that were exposed to these higher levels of mercury performed worse on the same cognitive tests.
WHAT? How does that make any sense?
- Eat fish and your kids will grow up to be a super genius.
- Eat fish, expose your child to mercury, and he/she will grow up to be something less than a super genius.
What are we supposed to do with this nugget of science?
Based on their findings, the researchers say that it’s possible that eating Omega 3 fish could produce greater brain benefits for babies if mothers-to-be consumed seafood with lower mercury levels.
Well…thanks very much Captain Obvious.
Okay, enough sarcasm, here’s the bottom line...
Moms-to-be need to start eating fish that is high in Omega 3 fatty acids but low in Mercury content. The following charts and links should help with that.
- Supplement with fish oils that have been labeled Pharmaceutical Grade or Molecularly Distilled. Keep in mind that it is a little like the wild west out there with fish oil supplements. You may need to do a little research and even ask a few questions.
- The University of Guelph run International Fish Oil Standards tests fish oil supplements for their purity. Their website is here.
- I personally use the Ascenta brand Nutra-Sea fish oil. You can enter the batch number of your purchased product in their website to see the specific third part purity report, or you can see a sample report here.
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