Mercury in Fish: Which to Eat and Which to Avoid

Jacqueline Ho | Oct 15th 2013

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Studies show that predatory fish, such as large tuna, swordfish and shark can have 10,000 times more mercury than the smaller fish they consume. Based on four categories of mercury levels, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends the following guidelines when it comes to eating fish. At-risk individuals, such as pregnant women, should consult their doctors about potential harmful effects of mercury.

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Very low levels

No more than two 6-oz. servings per week: wild-caught Alaskan and Pacific Coast Salmon, fresh canned salmon, Catfish, ocean Perch, freshwater Troup, Tilapia, Whitefish, Whiting, anchovies

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Low levels

No more than six 6-oz. servings per month: canned light tuna, Pacific Cod, Pacific Haddock, wild-caught Atlantic Salmon, Mahi Mahi, Pacific Tuna, sea Trout, Snapper, Monkfish, freshwater Perch, Skate, White Pacific Croaker, Carp, Black Striped Bass

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Medium levels

No more than three 6-oz. servings per month: Halibut, Chilean Sea Bass, Grouper, Atlantic Tuna, Bluefish, Spanish Mackeral, Yellowfin Tuna, canned white Albacore Tuna

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High levels

Should avoid eating: Swordfish, Tilefish, Marlin, Shark, Bluefin Tuna, King Mackeral, Orange Roughy, Ahi Tuna