Fact CheckHealth

Eating raw crayfish is harmful to health and will not make you swim better

Claim: A WhatsApp message has claimed that eating crayfish fresh can make an individual, who does not know how, swim better in the river.

Misleading. The eating of raw crayfish does not help beginners  rather it endangers one’s health.

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Recently, a  message posted on Whatsapp claimed that eating crayfish raw without cooking can teach an individual new to swimming how to swim while in the river.

“Do you know that eating fresh Crayfish without cooking it will teach you how to swim in the river”, the post claims, adding that crayfish can swim better in the river which makes anyone who eats it fresh will swim like crayfish.

Screenshot of claim


Dubawa through a Google search unraveled several publications on the best ways to swim for beginners.

A sport publication, Swim-in-the-river on December 28, 2019 published an article titled; top 5 Fundamentals of fast swimming… The publication said fast swimming depends on constant practice with a coach that guides smartly and not hardly.

The publication further advises learners  to improve their balance to stay energetic in water while swimming with efficient kicks.

Swim in the river on January 4,2020  published 7 swim to learn methods for beginners which include the moving of arms, the constant crawling in the water with the backstroke 

A YouTube video with over a million views also teaches beginners how to swim with which the coach started teaching her student by saying, “Breathe in, go under, and out, once you have started holding your breath on the water to start floating with you back.

A Youtube video titled; Learn to swim Float for beginners (easy tutorial) stated that the first step for beginners is to know their balance and breathe control.

All the videos and articles written in the past never suggest that eating fresh crayfish while in the river is an easy way to learn swimming rather they all say the same thing such as; know your balance and control your breath as a beginner who wants to learn how to swim.

Health Implication of eating Crayfish Fresh  without cooking 

Dubawa  reached out to Michelle Umeadi, a Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist and Member of British Dietetic Association for comments on the benefit of eating crayfish fresh.

Mrs. Umeadi who is also a Co-founder of  Citadel Nutrition Consult told Dubawa that things that are eaten raw will over work the kidney and the liver  in terms of detoxification.

Umeadi said anything that is supposed to be cooked is supposed to reduce digestion, make the food  Bioavailable which means the body is able to process it, to take what is needed.

“But taking it raw you are overworking your organ trying to process or digest what you have eaten and it won’t be useful to you, so what it is the need of eating it raw”, she said.

What you need to know about Crayfish

Crayfish also called crawfish are among the aquatic groups that most of the time live in the river– either freshwater or saltwater–while some live in the burrows. However, all crayfish can borrow, according to a publication by Bethany Grant

Crayfish have a hard exoskeleton made from calcium, and its exoskeleton protects the internal tissues from injury.

The exoskeleton of crayfish can be a variety of different colors ranging from white to pink, orange, brown, to greenish-blue or dark blue and are characterized by a joined head and thorax region and a segmented abdomen possessing moveable parts, Bethany Grant said.


The claim that eating crayfish fresh while alive in the river will help beginners swim better is False and Misleading. Experts have said eating crayfish fresh without cooking will endanger your health.

The researcher produced this fact-check per the Dubawa 2020 Fellowship partnership with Today FM to facilitate the ethos of “truth” in journalism and enhance media literacy in the country.

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