Should we worry about Mercury in Seafood?

Should we worry about Mercury in Seafood?

Seafood is not only delicious but very nutritious as well. Fish and shellfish are low in saturated fat while containing the healthy omega-3 fatty acids. In addition, they have many other nutrients that keep us strong and promote healthy development. However, fish also contains mercury which is can be dangerous to our health. Most people do not need to worry about the trace amounts of mercury and can eat seafood without concern. However, the bodies of little children can be harmed. Mercury damages the developing nervous system. As a result the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as well as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), advises women who may become pregnant, pregnant women, nursing mothers, and young children to avoid certain types of fish that are higher in mercury.

Mercury is a naturally occurring element in the environment. It enters the air via industrial pollution and falls into lakes and streams. When mercury enters the water it turns into methylmercury. This is the type of harmful mercury that can be harmful to little bodies. All fish absorb the methylmercury. However, some absorb more mercury than others. Therefore, depending upon what fish you eat, the levels of mercury will vary.

Mercury builds up in an adult’s bloodstream and overtime the body processes it. Before you become pregnant, it is important to avoid food with mercury, so that your body has time to cleanse itself. This way, when you conceive, the baby will have a healthy environment in which to thrive.

By selecting certain fish and shellfish, women and children are able to still enjoy the nutritional benefits of fish while reducing their exposure the mercury. Swordfish, Shark, King Mackerel, and Tilefish all contain high levels of mercury and therefore, should be avoided. However, shrimp, canned light tuna, Pollock, salmon, and catfish are all low in mercury. Be careful not to confused light tuna with albacore tuna. Albacore tuna contains higher levels of mercury. The local authorities will have information about how safe the fish caught in your area is. This will help you know how much you can eat. If you are unable to find advice, don’t eat more than six ounces per week. For children, the size should be proportionally less.

If your child has been harmed from mercury because another party was eligible, you may be entitled to compensation. Visit http://www.stouwiemayo.com to learn more about your rights.

Joseph Devine