We’ve all heard about mercury in fish and high levels of toxicity, but it’s not necessarily front page news. There isn’t a new article or popular media discussion addressing the issue at every turn like there was recently for Ebola. There are some fish that many of us consider staples, like tuna, that actually have moderate to high levels of mercury toxicity. I for one have come to consider albacore tuna salad as quick convenient alternative to fast food. I just pack a mix of tuna and dressing with some crackers and I’m good to go.
Unfortunately according to the NRDC tuna is actually rather high in mercury. Canned chunk light and skipjack tuna are listed as containing moderate levels of mercury and the suggested servings are six or less a month. Canned albacore and yellowfin tuna have higher levels of mercury and it is suggested that we eat no more than three servings a month. And finally, bigeye and ahi tuna are listed as extremely high in mercury, meaning they should be avoided.
Just like we can feel helpless in understanding how to eat right healthy in our busy lives, we can feel helpless in discovering the ins-and-outs of both the issues surrounding mercury toxicity in fish and what that means for us. But don’t panic. You don’t need to do it alone. Over the next couple of months the Ecomerge team will explore some of the ins-and-outs of mercury toxicity and present some healthy protein packed alternatives along the way.
For the NRDC’s complete list of mercury levels in fish please go to http://www.nrdc.org/health/effects/mercury/guide.asp.