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How do I avoid mercury in fish and seafood?

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency have issued consumer advisories on the risks of methyl mercury in fish. Pregnant women, women who might become pregnant and nursing mothers should follow these guidelines. Young children should follow the same guidelines except their serving sizes should be smaller.
  • Do not eat shark, swordfish, king mackerel or tilefish. They contain high levels of mercury.
  • Mercury levels vary in other fish. It is safe to eat up to 12 ounces (two or three meals) of other purchased fish and shellfish a week.
  • You may eat up to six ounces of albacore tuna (one average meal) per week.
  • Check local advisories about the safety of fish caught in local rivers and streams. If no advice is available, consume no more than six ounces per week and don't eat any other fish during the week.
Fish is a healthy addition to anybody's eating plan. Choose canned light tuna instead of tuna steaks or albacore tuna because it generally has less mercury.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.