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FDA to Issue Mercury Warning for Pregnant Women and Children

A draft advisory from the Food and Drug Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency cautions women of childbearing age as well as young children to limit their intake of tuna, shellfish and other fish to 12 ounces a week, the equivalent of two to three modest meals. Among seafood, tuna ranks second only to shrimp in popularity in the United States. StarKist, Bumble Bee and Chicken of the Sea, the three principal U.S. tuna manufacturers, sold about 2.3 billion six-ounce cans of tuna last year. Fortunately the public is starting to catch on as retail sales have dropped by about 10 percent in the United States in the past decade, to about $1.1 billion a year. Last year, shrimp for the first time overtook tuna in overall sales.

If you have been reading this newsletter you would have known this as I have warned people for the last several years about this problem. So, the solution, as I mention in the blog posting below for vitamin D, is to avoid the fish and use cod liver oil. If you really enjoy fish you can consider most nearly any commercial brand of sardines or mercury free salmon. We have Vital Choice on our site and have tested it many times and found it to be mercury free. It certainly is not the only mercury free salmon out there, but if you were going to consume salmon regularly I would strongly encourage you to have the fish tested for mercury. With respect to tuna, I am not aware of any mercury free tuna, so avoid it like the plague, just like the highly conservative FDA and EPA are advising.

Original FDA Posting December 10, 2003

Washington Post December 11, 2003; Page A01

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