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Can You Take Sea Moss While Pregnant or Breastfeeding?

Pregnancy is a unique and exciting time in a woman's life. But it's also complex. Between increased nutrient demands, morning sickness, cravings, and random aversions, getting good nutrition can be tough. 

Enter mineral and vitamin supplements. 97 % of pregnant women report taking prenatal vitamins and natural supplements to promote their babies’ healthy growth and development.

Sea moss is one of the newest natural superfoods found to have exceptional benefits during pregnancy and breastfeeding. The red alga harvested on the Atlantic coasts is indeed extraordinarily nutrient-rich.

Zoom in on sea moss for pregnancy. What are the benefits? Is it safe? How to take it? All your questions answered!

Disclaimer: The content of this article is not intended to provide medical advice. During pregnancy, only take supplements that your health care provider has approved.

Related article: How can sea moss improve your sex life?

Sea Moss Benefits for Pregnant Women

Sea moss contains numerous pregnancy-supporting nutrients and is comparable to prenatal vitamins in many ways. As a natural source of minerals, vitamins, folic acid, and iodine, it provides great health benefits for pregnant women and their babies.

Pregnancy vitamins & minerals

Chondrus Crispus contains 92 of the 102 minerals our body needs to function, including the pregnancy kit: calcium, iron, zinc, iodine, folate, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, vitamin C, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin E, A, K, and others. 

Taking sea moss also helps boost the immune system and energy levels which is quite appreciated when carrying a baby!

A natural source of folic acid 

What pregnant women haven’t heard about folic acid? It’s probably the #1 supplement to have during pregnancy

Women are advised to take 400 mcg of folic acid every day before pregnancy and until they’re 12 weeks pregnant. It helps get pregnant in the first place and prevent birth defects.

Sea moss is packed with folate, the natural form of folic acid. ¼ cup of sea moss contains an average of 36 mcg of folate, which is quite a lot for natural foods.

Complement with prenatal vitamins or other natural sources of folic acid such as dark green leafy vegetables, beans, peanuts, fresh fruits, whole grains, liver, seafood, and others.

It increases iodine intake

Irish moss is also known to be one of the greatest natural sources of iodine.Iodine deficiency during pregnancy may cause serious neurodevelopmental problems including cognitive or motor issues, and even cretinism.

Because of their increased thyroid hormone production, renal iodine losses, and transfer of iodine to the fetus, all pregnant women need iodine supplementation. While the daily recommendations are set at 150 mcg for adults, it’s increased to 250 mcg for pregnant women and 290 mcg for breastfeeding mothers[1].

One study found that a serving of sea moss (2 tbsp) contains an average of 47 mcg of iodine[2]That's 19% of the recommended 250 mcg for pregnant women and 16% of the 290 mcg for breastfeeding mothers.

Is Sea Moss Safe During Pregnancy?

Irish moss is a safe product to consume including during pregnancy. But like with any potent food and supplement, while taking a reasonable amount every day can do wonders to your health and the baby's development, too much of it could put both your lives at risk. The main risks here come from exposure to high levels of iodine and heavy metals.

Excess of iodine 

As said above, iodine is absolutely essential for the fetus's development and all women should increase their iodine intake during pregnancy. However, too much iodine could be harmful to both the mother and the fetus. 

Iodine poisoning is extremely rare. According to the National Institute of Health, the safe daily upper limit for adults is set at 1,100 mcg. That includes all sources of iodine (sea moss, but also other foods, beverages, and supplements). Above 1,1 mcg per day[3], iodine supplements may cause health problems if not taken under medical supervision (in case of iodine deficiency for example).

To reach dangerous levels of iodine, one would need to ingest more than 20 times the daily recommended dosage of sea moss. While it seems very unlikely, make sure to keep track of how much sea moss you’re eating while pregnant. 

Heavy metals

Wildcrafted sea moss may also contain heavy metals found in polluted ocean waters. Pregnant women are advised to pay special attention to levels of lead, mercury, cadmium, or arsenic in their foods.

Exposure to high levels of heavy metals can increase the risks of miscarriage, stillbirth, and birth defects, as well as affect the baby’s brain development. 

High mercury levels are often found in seafood products, especially in big predator fishes like sharks, swordfish, king mackerel, or tilefish. Seaweeds like Irish moss can also absorb heavy metals. 

During pregnancy, make sure you’re only eating high-quality sea moss. All products sold at Organics Nature are tested by a third-party laboratory and guaranteed pregnancy-safe with the lowest levels of heavy metals.

How to take sea moss while pregnant?

While pregnant, you can take sea moss in the same way anyone would take it. Sea moss is available in a wide range of products, including sea moss gel, capsules, raw dehydrated alga, or powder. 

Make sure not to exceed the daily recommended amount of 2 tbsp of gel, 2 capsules, 2000 mg of power, or 2-4 tbsp of raw dehydrated sea moss a day.

Related article: How much sea moss can you take daily?

Sea Moss during Pregnancy & Breastfeeding: FAQ

Pregnancy is such a special time in a woman’s life. But it's also a time of great concern and worries. We all want to do our best and optimize our nutrition for our baby’s health. Taking natural superfoods like sea moss may be obvious for some while it can be scary for others. Here's a series of FAQs our team of experts answers for you:

Can you take sea moss and prenatal vitamins together?

Yes, you can take sea moss and prenatal vitamins together. In fact, sea moss should not be taken in lieu of prenatal vitamins, but as a complement. While sea moss and prenatal vitamins do contain some of the same vitamins and minerals, there’s no special concern for nutrient excess as long as you respect the recommended daily serving sizes of each product. 

In any case, it’s always best to ask for your doctor’s advice before taking any food supplement for pregnancy. 

Is it ok to take sea moss while breastfeeding?

Absolutely. Sea moss is a great supplement for breastfeeding mothers. Its nutrients help strengthen the immune system and produce richer milk. It participates in increasing the iodine and fatty acids intakes you need for healthy and abundant lactation.

What’s the best sea moss for pregnancy?

Pregnant women must be careful about the quality of the foods they're eating to avoid toxins. The best and safest sea moss for both the mother and the baby is wildcrafted organic sea moss that’s been tested for heavy metals

Related article: What's the difference between wildcrafted and pool-grown sea moss?

 

Organics Nature Sea Moss Gel is 100% Wildcrafted, Organic, and Tested for Heavy Metals. 

What other seaweeds are good for pregnancy? 

When consumed in reasonable amounts, seaweeds have numerous health benefits for pregnancy. They’re rich in omega-3 fatty acids that help fetal brain development. They help with constipation issues and digestive problems. Their high levels of antioxidants may also help pregnant women deal with anxiety, mild pain, or even post-partum depression.

As long as you do not exceed the daily allowance of iodine, you can have any type of edible seaweed during pregnancy, including sea moss, kelp, nori, wakame, dulse, arame, etc.

Does sea moss help you get pregnant?

Yes, sea moss can help you get pregnant. Chondrus crispus has been traditionally used as a fertility booster by the Irish and Jamaican people for centuries.

Related article: How does sea moss help with fertility in men and women?

Can sea moss help with morning sickness? 

There are quite a few anecdotal stories of women claiming that eating sea moss has helped reduce their morning sicknesses during pregnancy. While we could not find any scientific evidence, sea moss is proven to help with digestion and stomach issues.

People respond differently to sea moss. While it may help with morning sickness for some women, it may not work for others. You'll have to try it for yourself!

Can sea moss gel help with stretch marks?

Stretch marks are very common and affect 8 out of 10 pregnant women. Fortunately, there are many natural ways to prevent or treat them. Sea moss is one of the most efficient ones. The gel obtained from sea moss has numerous skin benefits. It’s a great moisturizer packed with antioxidants and it promotes skin cell growth. To prevent stretch marks, generously apply sea moss gel on your baby bump and gently massage every day during pregnancy.

Can you take bladderwrack while pregnant?

Bladderwrack, scientifically known as fucus vesiculous, is a brown seaweed commonly used in synergy with sea moss for many health and wellness purposes. While the consumption of sea moss during pregnancy is considered safe, there’s no similar research on bladderwrack yet. If you use bladderwrack while pregnant, make sure not to exceed your iodine intake. 

Do you have any other questions about taking sea moss during pregnancy or breastfeeding? Have you used it yourself?

References:

[1] Toloza, Freddy J. K., Motahari Hooman, Maraka Spyridoula. Consequences of Severe Iodine Deficiency in Pregnancy: Evidence in HumansCrossref DOI link: https://doi.org/10.3389/FENDO.2020.00409 Published Online: 2020-06-19

[2] Andersen S, Noahsen P, Rex KF, Florian-Sørensen HC, Mulvad G. Iodine in Edible Seaweed, Its Absorption, Dietary Use, and Relation to Iodine Nutrition in Arctic People. J Med Food. 2019 Apr;22(4):421-426. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2018.0187. PMID: 30990756.https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30990756/

[3] Southern AP, Jwayyed S. Iodine Toxicity. 2022 Jan 9. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2022 Jan–. PMID: 32809605. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32809605/

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