Norris asked in HealthDiet & Fitness · 9 years ago

Mercury in fish - Need to know?

What contains more mercury, wild fish or farmed? Also, does the mercury content differ in canned fish than in fresh?

2 Answers

  • Anonymous
    9 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Hi – Quite a few people are confused about this, and as a dietitian with the National Fisheries Institute, I’d love to clear the water. Here’s the official seafood advice from the Food and Drug Administration and Institute of Medicine:

    -For the general population: Eat a variety of fish twice a week, and there are no fish to limit or avoid because of mercury.

    -For women who are or may become pregnant, nursing moms, and young kids: The nutrients in fish are especially important for you, so eat a variety of fish twice a week. Half (6 ounces) of the fish you eat every week can be white albacore tuna. There are four fish to avoid that you probably aren’t eating anyway: shark, tilefish, king mackerel, and swordfish.

    The more we learn about the good things eating fish does for your body, the more doctors and dietitians are focusing on the health risks of not eating enough fish. One of the most important studies to date on this issue found "Avoidance of modest fish consumption due to confusion regarding risks and benefits could result in thousands of excess CHD [heart disease] deaths annually and suboptimal neurodevelopment in children."

    For a look at what plenty of seafood looks like in the real-life diet of a registered dietitian (me!) visit my BlogAboutSeafood. In addition to canned tuna, I also eat a good bit of canned salmon, sardines, and anchovies for variety.


    Jennifer McGuire, MS, RD

    National Fisheries Institute

  • 9 years ago

    All that I know is that it is better to eat smaller fish that have not been in the ocean as long as the big ones and so have less time to absorb the mercury. I'm sure there is a ton of info on line about mercury in fish. Isn't it ashame what we've done to our planet?

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