Facts on Seafood
Do you like See-Food?
  Well if you do, you should know some facts surrounding the amounts of mercury that fish are acquiring as well as what species are being over fished.  
What does mercury do and how does it get into fish?
It's a neurotoxin like lead. Fetuses, infants and young children, whose brains and nervous systems are rapidly developing, are at greatest risk of harm from neurotoxins. The more mercury that gets into a person's body, the longer the exposure time, the younger the person, the more severe the effects are likely to be. Mercury occurs naturally in the environment, but fossil fuels, especially coal, that are burned in power plants to make electricity, along with some bacteria, creates methymercury from the chemical transformation it undergoes. Through rain, snow, and runoff, methylmercury accumulates in various bodies of water and is absorbed by fish. Larger fish have more mercury because they feed on other fish that have accumulated mercury and live longer and so they accumulate more mercury.

What are the facts on farmed fish?
Well, many farmed fish are OK and the link below will set you straight on which are. But, farmed fish, particularly salmon, are a definite No-No. Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), banned in the U.S. since 1977 and members of a class of chemicals known as persistent organic pollutants, or POPs, were found at far higher levels in farmed than in wild salmon, according to a study released in January 2004. POPs accumulate in animal fat and rise in the food chain, so that large predator fish will generally contain higher amounts. Because farmed salmon are raised on feed that can include ground-up animals and fish, their bodies accumulate these pollutants. Other POPs found in fish include the organochlorine pesticide dieldrin and dioxins ~ the result of chlorine paper bleaching and manufacturing and incineration of PVC plastic.

PCBs, which are neurotoxins, hormone disrupters and probable carcinogens, were found at levels seven times higher in farmed than in wild salmon. PCBs are also found at high levels in fish from polluted water bodies, varying from locale to locale; state health advisories list which fish should not be consumed by children, pregnant or nursing women, and women of childbearing age.

You can visit the greenguide's best fish picks. This is an updated list of Yes Fish, Sometimes Fish, and No Fish. Unfortunately, Sardines are Yes Fish and Bluefin Tuna are No Fish. However, Squid (I know you all like fried or, more healthier, grilled calamari) is a Yes Fish! Pregnant women and children really need to be aware of just how much fish they eat each month. Fish lowest in mercury include: wild salmon, sardines, squid, Arctic char, Atlantic summer flounder (flukes), Pacific flounder, sanddabs, and scallops (these last three should be eaten once per month due to habitat damage or to allow their population to recover). Fish highest in mercury levels include King Mackerel, Shark, Swordfish, Tilefish, and Tuna-fresh or frozen. Canned Tuna isn't as bad because they tend to be the smaller tuna. "chunk light" or "chunk" can come from different types of the smaller tuna and is the best option.

Here is a handy national seafood guide to keep in your wallet from the Monterey Bay Aquarium:
Low res version for viewing or High res version for printing

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