Tuna Fish Dangers:
in Tuna Fish
By Dr. Ben
you eat tuna fish on a regular basis? If so, you should know about
a recently published report on dangerous levels of mercury found
in canned tuna fish.
report was published by an environmental group called "Defenders
of Wildlife," which contracted New Age/Landmark Laboratory
in Benton Harbor, Michigan to test 164 cans of tuna fish that were
produced in Ecuador, Mexico, Costa Rica, Thailand, Malaysia, the
Philippines, and the United States.
are the key points that I took from their report:
Cans of tuna fish that were tested to have the highest level of
mercury originated from waters around Mexico and Ecuador. Coincidentally,
the fishing industry in these areas is known for deliberately
casting nets in areas where dolphins are spotted, since large
tuna fish are usually found swimming below dolphins.
average mercury content of canned tuna fish that was produced
in the United States was generally less than that of imported
canned tuna fish.
tuna fish that was produced in Asia had the lowest average levels
tuna fish that was produced in Latin America had the highest average
levels of mercury. Some of these cans had levels that exceeded
the United States government's limit of 1.0 parts per million.
canned light tuna was tested as having high levels of mercury.
Light tuna is considered by the FDA to be low in mercury compared
to other large fish.
two lines of canned tuna that were found to have mercury levels
that are higher than the U.S. federal limit are: Sardinar from Costa
Rica, which tested at 1.3 parts per million, and Calmex from Mexico,
which came in at 1.4 parts per million.
pack tuna sold under a brand called "Tuna Real" was
found to have levels of mercury as high as 1.5 parts per million.
does all of this mean for the end consumer? I believe that it is
prudent for pregnant women, women who are planning on becoming pregnant,
and children to avoid eating more than one can of tuna fish every
of eating tuna, I believe that it is healthier to eat smaller fish
such as wild salmon, lake trout, and anchovies. Smaller fish are
not as high up on the food chain as larger fish like tuna and shark,
and are therefore less likely to bio-accumulate significant amounts
the problem with steady exposure to mercury through our food choices?
Over time, a build up of mercury in our tissues can cause a number
of health problems, the most common of which are nervous system
damage, cardiovascular challenges, and injury to the kidneys. Most
susceptible to these effects are infants and young children.
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