The desire to eat alligator while pregnant is a craving for many women. It is most especially common in women who have tasted alligator meat before. In some cases, a woman may crave to eat alligator while pregnant after reading about it or seeing it on television.
However, as we always advise – you should be sure of the safety of foods and drinks before consumption. What is more important is that you should inquire again before taking such meals or drinks while pregnant.
This is because there are instances where certain foods or drinks may be good for you but not suitable for a growing baby. In this article, we will address all your concerns about alligator meat and whether you can eat alligator while pregnant. Let us get started – shall we?
Can You Eat Alligator While Pregnant?
Alligator meat is a very popular delicacy enjoyed by millions of people across the globe. It is delicious and also highly nutritious. But should you eat alligator while pregnant? Is it healthy for a pregnant woman, and is it safe for the growing baby? Let us find out.
Well, despite its delicious taste and nutritional values, alligator meat should be avoided by pregnant women. So, you need to put your cravings for alligator meat in check during the period of pregnancy.
Apart from pregnant women, it is also advisable that children under the age of six years should avoid alligator meat. As a precaution, healthy adults should consume alligator meat moderately and occasionally – like once a month.
What Is Alligator Meat Called?
The meat from an alligator is often referred to as ‘Gator Meat’ in many parts. It is available in seafood farmer’s markets and in many supermarkets.
The tail area of the alligator is the most popular part of the meat sold in markets and stores. The tenderloin – as it is called, is not the only edible part of the alligator. The ribs, nuggets, wings, and other parts of the alligator are equally edible and delicious.
Can I Eat Alligator During Pregnancy?
No, it is not advisable to eat alligators while pregnant. Alligator meat can affect the proper development of growing babies. So, it is advisable for pregnant women to stay away from this delicacy during pregnancy.
Also, children of six years and below are strongly advised to stay off alligator meat. At least, until they are older. Adults are also advised to eat alligator meat in moderation and only occasionally.
Is Alligator Safe to Eat While Pregnant?
It is not safe to eat alligator meat while pregnant. Pregnant women and children who are under the age of six years are advised against eating alligator meat.
The reason behind this advice is the mercury content in alligator meat. Gator meat is a delicious and nutritious cuisine that is popular in many parts of the world. But even though there are no official health warnings related to consuming alligator meat, it has been found to contain high traces of mercury.
According to a preliminary study conducted in South Carolina in 1998. Where an experiment was carried out on fifteen different samples of alligator meat, high mercury traces were discovered. It was discovered that the average mercury level in alligator meat is 0.694 ppm.
What Part Of The Alligator Can You Not Eat?
In many parts of the world, all the chewable parts of the alligator are prepared and eaten. There are no known parts of the alligator that is not edible – or not delicious.
However, if you are buying alligator meat from a supermarket, you are likely going to buy the alligator tenderloin or the rips. These are the common parts of the alligator that are often available for sale.
The tenderloin of the alligator is the meat gotten from the tail area. When grilled, baked, or smoked, it tastes like chicken – with a unique fishy aroma. At the same time, the gator ribs can be easily mistaken for pork ribs. They are equally very juicy and tasty.
Interestingly, the alligator tongue is a delicious and highly sort-after delicacy. It is very rare because the hunters usually keep the exotic parts for themselves. After it is harvested, it is usually drained and cooked with some butter and herbs under high heat. The meat is said to be very delicious and has quite a unique taste.
Another interesting part of the alligator, which is considered a great delicacy, is the liver. As you must have guessed – and rightly so, the hunters also harvest this part for themselves on most occasions.
Well, anyone in their position would do the same. This is because the liver of an alligator is regarded as the most nutrient-dense meat known to man. It has one of the highest meat concentrations of Vitamin A.
Frequently Asked Questions [FAQ]
Question 1: Can Pregnant Women Eat Alligator?
It is not advisable for a pregnant woman to eat alligator meat. This is because of the high mercury content in the meat. It can be harmful, especially to the growing baby. Kids who are six years of age and under are also advised to stay off alligator meat.
Question 2: Is It Safe to Eat Alligator While Breastfeeding
It is not safe to eat alligator meat during breastfeeding, especially if it is a wild-caught alligator. To be on the safer side, it is best to avoid it totally during breastfeeding due to its high mercury content.
Question 3: What Does Alligator Meat Taste Like?
The taste of alligator meat highly depends on how it is prepared and the part you are eating. In general, you are bound to experience a taste similar to chicken or quail. You will also experience an aftertaste that is similar to what you will get from eating a fish.
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Question 4: Does Alligator Meat Contain Mercury?
Yes, there are traces of mercury in alligator meat. A study pegged the average mercury amount in alligator meat as 0.694 ppm. So, it should be eaten in moderation – about once a month. Also, pregnant women, breastfeeding mothers, and children below the age of six should avoid eating alligator meat.
Question 5: Is Alligator Classified as Seafood or Meat?
Yes, even though alligators do not live in seawater like crocodiles, the meat from alligators are classified as seafood. So, you are likely to come across alligator meat in a seafood market. Alligators live and are bred in swamps.
Question 6: How Much Meat Can You Get From Alligator?
Alligator has a lot of skin which is often removed when the meat is being prepared. It takes a lot of skill, time, and patience to prepare and clean an alligator for meat. Sometimes, butchers take as long as two hours on one alligator. But the effort is rewarding because an average of about 40 pounds of meat can be harvested from one alligator.
Question 7: Is Alligator Meat Healthy for Consumption?
Yes, alligator meat is not only juicy and delicious; it is healthy. The meat is low in fat but contains a good amount of protein. Apart from its protein and vitamin concentration, it is a firm and naturally flavored meat that is enjoyed by many.
Question 8: Is Alligator Head Edible?
Yes, the head of an alligator is edible and is fast increasing in demand by top chefs and restaurants. The meat from the alligator head falls under spare parts meat. Farmers and butchers make more money from such parts than from other parts of an animal.
Question 9: Are the Legs of Alligators Edible?
Yes, the alligator feet are edible and are often sold together with the body. However, unlike the tenderloin – which is gotten from the alligator’s tail, the meat from the alligator’s feet is darker. It is also stronger because it contains more muscle which is obviously from increased physical activity.
If you are buying alligator meat from a supermarket, you are more likely to buy meat from an alligator tail than from any other part of the alligator.
Question 10: Can You Eat Raw Alligator Meat?
It is not advisable to eat raw alligator meat. You have a high risk of bacterial infection if you eat raw meat from an alligator. In fact, it is advisable that you always separate raw alligator meat from cooked ones or other vegetables to avoid bacteria contamination.
Also, after handling or cutting alligator meat, you should wash your hands, knives, and cutting surfaces with water and soap. In cases where you marinated the alligator meat, you should make sure to dispose of the marinating juice from the alligator meat.
Question 11: What is the Shelve Life of Alligator Meat?
The shelf life of alligator meat depends on the time the alligator was harvested. Although alligator meat is always sold in a frozen state, all meats should be fresh at the time of consumption.
Alligator meat can stay up to two days if stored in the coldest part of a refrigerator. However, when it is frozen, it can stay for as long as six months. But you should always allow your meat to defrost naturally before cooking.