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Canned Fish and Mercury

[16 Mar 2011 | No Comments | | Author: ]
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We have got wind of all the reports. Consuming fish is good for you. They contain a lot of the omega-3s that are required for proper heart health. Only, canned fish may likewise contain something that’s not so good for you – mercury.

Have you heard of mercury? It is an element in the periodic table that’s really carcinogenic. For many, many years it was the alloy utilized in thermometers. Only, when a thermometer broke, the mercury would pour out and could induce sickness for those who came in contact with it.

There’s a type of mercury that’s found in canned fish and some fresh fish. It’s named methyl mercury. Fish pick it up from water contamination. Factories and mines have this type of mercury in the smoke that’s emitted from the processes going on within. Even volcanic activity may produce this type of mercury.

Across time, this pollution that enters the air eventually makes it into the lakes, rivers and streams. The quantity of mercury and methyl mercury in the water itself is minimal and within standards. The trouble arrives once that mercury enters the food chain.

Mercury and the aquatic food chain

Here is how it works out. The algae in the water absorb the methyl mercury. Other organisms in the water nibble on this algae or live inside it. Small fish consume the littler organisms and take in the mercury compound. Can you envision where we’re going with this?

Each successive level of the food chain takes in a bit more of the mercury into their bodies. The mercury is hived away in the muscle of the fish, which is what we consume. Regrettably, fish fall prey to what we term “bioaccumulation.” Additional mercury is hived away in the bodies of the fish higher in the food chain that live longer.

Mercury is eliminated slowly from the bodies of fish. If you consume canned tuna for instance, you’ll get more methyl mercury than if you were to consume an oyster or a smaller fish.

Pregnancy and canned fish

While seafood and fish furnish plenty of required vitamins and minerals to the body, they may likewise present a risk. For this reason, pregnant women are advised not to consume much fish and seafood during their pregnancy. The presence of mercury in the body may be poisonous to unborn fetuses and likewise small kids.

It’s suggested that a pregnant woman consume less than 6 oz.s of canned fish like tuna per week because of the potential mercury content. Fish that are on the “Do Not Eat” list are bigger ones like shark, dolphin, swordfish, and king mackerel. Alternatively try smaller fish and other seafood like shrimp or salmon.

Fish is a crucial part of a salubrious diet but there may be a mercury issue for expectant women. Confer with your obstetrician about how much and which types of fish are safest for you.

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