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Feb 5, 2013 06:18 PM

Will be Pregnant in Tokyo, with my husband

My husband and I will be traveling to Tokyo for the first in about two weeks. I'm 17 weeks pregnant and we'll be there for 5 days/4 nights.

We're very excited, but because I can't have raw fish and some kinds of cooked fish, we're worried that we'll be very limited for restaurants. I still want my husband to be able to experience an excellent sushi experience, but obviously we'd prefer restaurants that can accomodate both of us.

Does anyone have ideas for a top quality sushi restaurant, or any other Tokyo restaurants, where both of us can enjoy a first rate experience? We're looking for sushi, tempura, ramen, etc... that will be flexible.


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  1. In general, sushi restaurants in Tokyo serve only sushi and sashimi. I think your best bet might be a hotel restaurant with a good sushi counter.

    Think of it as an opportunity to sample a lot of great Japanese cuisine that isn't sushi....

    1. Not eating raw fish is something they recommend abroad, a Japanese doctor would tend to take a different view. Some fish should be avoided, but generally it's OK to eat raw fish at good sushi restaurants in Tokyo. My wife - with her Japanese doctor's approval - ate lots and lots of sushi during both of her pregnancies here in Tokyo.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Asomaniac

        generally true about being able to eat raw fish while pregnant but I did have a Japanese friend in Japan who miscarried because of Listeria or something from eating raw fish. there's still a risk, however small, so it has to be a personal choice whether to take that risk. if the op would rather not take that risk then so be it.

        1. re: prasantrin

          Yep, makes sense (though hard to know if your friend got it from quality raw fish at a great sushi place or supermarket sashimi, which my wife also would not have risked). I guess there are so many potential risks (a rare freak occurrence that causes you to miscarry can be caused by many innocuous foods), but if there is a specific food which you have been warned about, no need to risk (and you'd probabaly, psychologically, not enjoy the sushi as you'd worry if you are not jeopardising your baby's health).

          Having said that, my wife (who is European, not Japanese) probably would have killed herself if she had been forced off the sushi for 9 months. Much worse for her than not drinking.

      2. If you want to eat sushi(a few) with your husband, just go to a good one !! Maguro(yes!), 'saba(mackerel)', 'ika(squid)' are a bit of a risk at entry level sushis (risk with any raw part from animals), but risk is greatly diminished at good ones who have severe product selection. Overall, the risk (well, the additional risk of sushi versus other preparation of the same ingredients) is limited to few humans stomachs who have trouble coping with raw fish, so sushis can cause allergies. Now, you can eat some good boiled shrimp sushi, 'anago(conger eel)', sweet egg (like souffle!), ... and urchins... Sushi-yasan just do sushi, some hotels can accommodate sushi with kaiseki, like for exemple the hotel Okura, and then you have choice.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Ninisix

          Maguro (NO!) Mackarel is definitely out too. Ika is ok though.

          One of the main reasons doctor's abroad recommend against sushi for pregnancies is due to mercury content.

          It's not exactly fine dining, but it is still fun to go to conveyor belt places and that allows you to pick whatever you want. Plus, you can usually order off a limited menu. It may be a good way for your husband to get his fish fix while you snack on fried chicken or miso soup.

          1. re: lost squirrel

            Well, millions of Japanase eat sushi without issues, women are not - to my knowledge - known to stop eating sushi when pregnant. Of course, it is raw fish/shell, so as with any food from live animals, especially taken raw, there is no zero risk. 
            Most usual (although still rare) risk is on maguro(yes for the mercury), ika, saba,.. that contains some bacteries(exemple Aniskasis found in squid, salmon, sardine), even if usually they can't live long in human estomacs, can provoke allergy...You take less risk at upper scale sushis, they  pay close attention to good freshness, good selection of ingredients. Also, remember some non-raw pieces of sushi can be found.. Maguro contains mercury, I know about it, eating it every day will be a cause, I can imagine that can be a big concern for precautions abroad..

        2. Your options will only be limited if you go to sushi places. Other than that, you will have endless options for restaurants in Tokyo. Kaiseki, noodles, curry, yakitori, nabe, kamameshi, tempura, katsu, okonomiyaki, Japanese-Italian, Japanese-Chinese, salads, bakeries, sweets... you name it, Tokyo's got it.

          Japanese medical establishment tends to think raw fish is okay during pregnancy, but I do not recommend it. You're exposing your fetus to some degree of seafood-borne microbes, some of which are known to be potentially very harmful. It'll probably be okay, but why take a chance?

          1. Here is a place that seems to fit your needs: Aki, in Ningyoucho (, They have quite good sushi and tempura, although I have only been for lunch. Also, I think one of the guys speaks at least some English.