Seafood You May Want to Avoid Eating, Plus 5 Safer Options

seafood options you may want to avoid eating

Seafood can serve us in two ways depending on what fish you choose to consume. In fact, fish is considered a highly nutritious food as well as a toxic nightmare for the body.

That is why it is important that you choose the right type of fish at all times.

On the other hand, you also need to avoid the fish that you should never eat. It is true that fish is one of the best omega-3 fatty acid sources for us.

farmed salmon is usually a seafood option to avoidBut some kinds of seafood are a real threat due to low-level mercury poisoning – which can have devastating effects on the developing fetus.

Mercury poisoning can affect the heart of adults in a negative way – which may lead to heart attack and hypertension over time.

This happens because of fossil fuel emissions and heavy metals ending up in the waters and building up in the seafood.

In fact, there are many other reasons that you need to add certain kinds of fish into the never eat list. Some fish are so overfished that they are really on the brink of collapse. Consuming such seafood can have a negative impact on the ecosystem of the ocean.

This article provides information on seafood you need to avoid eating plus 5 safer options.

1. Tilapia

tilapia swimming in a pool

Tilapia is a fish that you need to avoid eating due to the very low levels of omega-3 fatty acids and very high levels of omega-6 fatty acids.

In fact, most experts consider eating tilapia similar to eating bacon.

Farmed fish such as tilapia could lead to a highly inflammatory diet – which isn’t that good for your overall health and well-being in the long run.

The latest statistics reveal that tilapia is one of the most widely consumed fish in America. In fact, low omega-3 levels and high omega-6 levels are quite dangerous for people who are suffering from asthma, heart conditions, arthritis, and various allergic and autoimmune diseases.

These kinds of seafood are not the best for individuals who are vulnerable to an exaggerated inflammatory response. It can damage one’s blood vessels, skin, lung, heart, and digestive tissues in the process.

On the other hand, researchers also found that farmed tilapia and catfish have numerous fatty acid characteristics that are considered detrimental to human health.

2. Atlantic Cod

a cod fish

Atlantic Cod is another kind of fish that you need to avoid eating. It is because the population of this fish has diminished on a rapid basis over the past century.

Heavy fishing that spanned over hundreds of years has resulted in the population of Atlantic Cod collapsing in the early 1990s.

Even though the female cod releases more than a million eggs at a time, only a very few of these eggs reach adulthood.

Scientists say that North Atlantic food webs have drastically changed due to the collapse of Atlantic Cod. In fact, the species is on the brink of extinction at the moment.

That is why you need to avoid eating this fish in order to save the ecosystem of the ocean.

3. Chilean Seabass

two seabass on the grill

Chilean Seabass or the Patagonia toothfish is another fish that you should never eat. That is because of the elevated mercury levels in their body.

Also, overfishing has left this species in serious trouble. These are the two main reasons that you should avoid eating this fish.

The Eel is another fish that is on the brink of extinction. The eel or unagi is a popular item on many sushi menus around the world.

The species have been overfished in many parts of the world and are slow to mature.

In fact, eels are very important when it comes to protecting the water supplies in the United States.

Eels are important in spreading the mussel populations in the rivers – which serve as natural water filters.

Farmed Fish

a school of tilapia swims in a pool

Farmed salmon is another fish that one needs to avoid eating. That is because of the unhealthiness of the fish. In fact, most salmon that is marketed as “Atlantic Salmon” is farmed.

Farmed salmon is not the ideal food for your long-term health and well-being. This fish is raised in conditions that are ridden with feces, pesticides, parasites, and bacteria.

Farmed salmon is considered inflammation-boosting. That is because of the low levels of omega-3 fatty acids in them.

The latest studies reveal that the omega-3 levels in farmed fish are dropping on a rapid basis. In fact, they are 50% of what they were five years ago. One reason for this is the quality of feed that is given to the farmed salmon.

Another study revealed that the dioxin levels in farmed salmon are almost eleven times higher than those in wild salmon. Dioxins are chemicals that are stored in fat cells.

They are linked to organ damage, cancer, and immune system dysfunction over time. That is why you need to avoid eating this fish.

Farmed Shrimp

factory farmed shrimp used to make a salad

Imported farmed shrimp is another seafood that you need to avoid consuming.

In fact, farmed shrimp accounts for more than 90% of the shrimp consumed in the United States.

On the other hand, shrimp accounts for more than 30% of all the seafood that is imported to the United States.

The average American eats about four pounds of shrimp each year.

The latest research revealed that farmed shrimp contained 4-hexylresorcinol – which is a food additive that is used to prevent discoloration in shrimp.

This substance possesses estrogen-like effects. Hence, it can decrease the sperm count in men and increase the risk of breast cancer in women.

On the other hand, a diluted form of formaldehyde, known as formalin, is approved for US shrimp farming.

It is considered a potential carcinogen. Shrimp pond water is treated with neurotoxic organophosphate pesticides – which is linked to tumors, memory loss, and ADHD symptoms.

These farms are also shocked with organotin compounds to kill mollusks – before stocking them with shrimp. These are hormone-disrupting chemicals that are similar to estrogen. They can mess with one’s hormonal system over time.

That is why you need t avoid eating farmed shrimp.

Know Where Your Crab Comes From

farmed crab is a no no

More than 75% of king crabs sold in the United States are imported from Russia. In fact, unsustainable fishing practices are common in Russia. Hence, you need to avoid eating this seafood.

On the other hand, most of the Alaskan king crab legs are imported from Russia under questionable practices.

Make sure that you know from where those king crab legs came from before ordering them. King crab legs are another kind of seafood that you need to avoid eating.

Say No to Shark?

Sharks are another kind of seafood that you should avoid eating for many reasons. One reason is they are very high on the food chain since they are the boss in the sea. Hence, they should have higher mercury levels in their body.

On the other hand, most shark species are slow to mature as well as they don’t have a lot of offspring.

5 Potentially Safer Fish Options Worth Considering

1. Wild-Caught Alaskan Salmon

a grizzly bear eats a huge salmon

This is one of the healthiest seafood options out there. You get to enjoy the true health benefits of seafood when you consume wild-caught Alaskan salmon.

In fact, wild-caught salmon is considered one of the most nutritious foods on the planet.

It has everything including qualities of preventing heart attacks, cancer and extending the lifespan of an individual.

It contains more than a day’s worth of vitamin D in one serving. It will help maintain your optimal health in a variety of ways.

Brain and neurological repair, joint and bone health, preventing ADHD in kids, and improving the health of your heart are some of the benefits of this seafood.

2. Pacific Sardines

pacific sardines are a healthy seafood option

This is another healthy and safe fish option out there. It contains the highest levels of omega-3 fatty acids. In fact, this fish is lower in the food chain.

Hence, the contaminate levels are quite low. There are many health benefits of consuming Pacific sardines.

Sardines are important to reduce inflammation and the risk of disease (see the foods the can cause inflammation here). It provides a lot of vitamins and minerals while helping to protect bone and joint health.

3. Atlantic Mackerel

This is another healthy and safe seafood option on the market today. This is an oily fish that has a higher level of omega-3 fatty acids. But it is preserved in salt before being sold.

That is why it is important to soak and rinse it before cooking.

4. Albacore Tuna

wild caught tuna on a dock

This is considered another healthy and safe seafood option on the market today. The flesh of this fish is flaky and firm. It is also one of the most expensive tuna varieties out there.

5. Black Cod

contains a lot of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. It is another safe and healthy seafood option on the market today. It also contains a lot of iron, copper, calcium, and other important minerals.

The fish is also an excellent choice for high-quality protein (see our list of the best proteins here).

Final Thoughts

The above-mentioned article provides information on some of the common seafood that you need to avoid eating plus 5 safer options.

Ultimately, the seafood you choose to eat will be up to you – use a little common sense and you should be able to do it safely!

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