Senators urge FDA to issue delayed seafood guidance for pregnant women

The FDA’s current advice on the subject, drafted in 2004, leaves many pregnant women under the impression that they should avoid seafood. But the lawmakers, led by Sens. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) and Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.), point to recent science showing that seafood rich in Omega-3 fatty acids improves brain and eye development in babies.

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The group of 21 senators wrote a letter to President Obama this week, asking him to direct the FDA to issue the new guidance, which is reportedly drafted but has been held up by an agency review process. Similar appeals to Obama were made in 2011 and last year.

“In the 27 months since a bipartisan group of Senators first wrote requesting your help, nearly 9 million babies have been born under outdated advice on seafood consumption during pregnancy, the lawmakers wrote. “For many pregnant women, consistent federal advice may be the only source of nutrition recommendations they receive.”