Fish / Seafood Mercury Contamination - List of Safe and Unsafe - High and Least

Latest update: May 11, 2020

Fish - Seafood - Mercury Contamination Lists

Fish and Mercury Contamination – A General Rule of Thumb

The larger the particular seafood species and the longer that species normally lives, the higher that species' mercury content and levels.

This is the result of two factors:
  • Larger fish consume more food, and therefor consume more mercury.
  • Longer-living species consume more food than shorter-lived species, thus again consuming more mercury.
A basic ranking list of fish / seafood species and their relative mercury content levels follows.

List of Fish and Seafood Having the Highest Mercury Levels and Content

The following list of fish species having the worst mercury content contamination. The mercury levels are so high, the EPA flatly states that pregnant women (and women trying to become pregnant) and young cchildren should not eat them at all. 

What fish have high mercury content?

  • King Mackerel
  • Tilefish
  • Swordfish
  • Shark
  • Marlin

List of Seafood and Fish That Are Lowest in Mercury Levels and Content

Considered safe to eat by pregnant women and young children in moderation, two 6-ounce portions spread out over the course of a week.

Which fish are low in mercury content and safest to eat?

  • Salmon
  • Shrimp
  • Pacific oysters
  • Sardines
  • Herring
  • Pollock
  • Trout
  • Catfish
  • Anchovies
  • Atlantic and Pacific mackerel
  • Fish sticks, other fast-food fish, etc.
  • Canned, light tuna. Note. Albacore tuna has more mercury than light tuna. The EPA recommendation for albacore tuna is only one 6-ounce can a week.

Basic List of Nutrition Information for Fish and Other Seafood

Generally rich in:
  • Omega-3 fatty acids
  • Protein
  • B vitamins
  • Vitamin E
  • Magnesium
  • Zinc
  • Iron
  • Red sockeye salmon is especially rich in vitamin D. Most people do not get enough of this vitamin.
  • Shellfish is loaded with iodine. It turns out that some people can have major allergic reactions to this particular mineral.

Fish Without Mercury List

There are none. Well, maybe your goldfish. Fortunately, the above list pretty much saves the day; leastwise, for now. The listed FDA resources are also of value.

And speaking of seafood nutrition, here's an article about kelp and kelp supplements; talks about both the pros and cons. The Food Info Data Advice Label may also be worth a perusal.

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1 comment:

  1. I wrote a couple of blogs about this, but yours is so muh better and more information is included.