Studies are showing that Americans are avoiding fish. Why? Fish is often contaminated with methylmercury; and making choices, especially with regard to tunafish based on mercury risk, is complicated.
Older yellow fin, blue fin and albacore tuna fish can have a lifespan of 40 years; as they get older, they migrate to the warmer waters of the pacific. They have many years of accumulation of mercury and are unsafe for consumption. However, tuna caught in the colder waters of the Pacific by hook and line on the surface are younger fish and contain minimal, if any, mercury at all. They are also very good sources of Omega-3 due to the body fat needed for the colder water.
Avoidance of fish is resulting in a lack of Omega 3 in the American diet. Fish is a great source of Omega 3 and does not need to be avoided with the proper knowledge. Omega 3 in the diet is critical and especially important for pregnant women.
- Only buy fish from whom you trust. Ask questions. Some fish in the large supermarkets carry fish from China and Taiwan, some of which should be avoided!
- Check for advisories against specific seafood. Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch is one very good source.
- Look for fish lowest in contaminants.
- Chose wild-caught instead of farmed.
- Keep serving sizes at 4-6 ounces and 2-3 for children only twice a week
Make sure that you are getting Omega-3 in your diet and the correct balance of Omega-3 to Omega 6!