Tuna Safety – Should You Worry About Mercury?

We both LOVE canned tuna. It hits the trifecta for taste, convenience, and a quick source of protein. It also boasts a modest to high amount of omega-3s.

To clarify, there are two main kinds of canned tuna: chunk light and solid or chunk white (albacore). Though most canned white tuna is albacore, it’s mercury levels are almost three times higher than the smaller skipjack tuna, used in most canned light varieties.

Most are aware that pregnant and nursing moms are told to avoid or strictly limit certain fish (including tuna) for this reason. But should it be a concern for the average consumer? Absolutely.

Excess mercury can damage nerves, leading to memory loss, irritability and balance problems. According to the FDA, it is safe to get, on average, up to 7 micrograms (mcg) of mercury a week for every 22 pounds you weigh.

Sourcing Matters Because we are also concerned about the environment and waste, we always choose brands that catch their tuna by trolls, polls, or FAD-free purse seines (FAD stands for fish aggregating devices, which attract, catch and waste a lot of other fish unnecessarily).

What about sushi?

Sushi fans, listen up. A survey by Rutgers University found that people who eat sushi weekly—particularly types that are higher in mercury like tuna—are at risk for excessive mercury poisoning.

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