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Study: Nearly Half of Sushi Served at 26 LA-Area Restaurants Mislabeled

The news that nearly half the sushi sold in select Los Angeles-area restaurants isn’t really the type of fish it’s labeled as had CBSLA in a tizzy, as it reported that 90 percent of halibut orders were actually flounder. The good news was that only 1 of 48 tuna samples was mislabeled.

As tuna has a very distinct taste, it may be harder to deceive people into thinking they are eating tuna when they’re not, although four years ago we learned that 59 percent of the “tuna” Americans eat is not tuna. At that time, 84 percent of “white tuna” sold in sushi venues was actually escolar, a fish associated with acute and serious digestive effects if you eat just a couple of ounces.

Additionally, 74 percent of fish samples were not the fish they were labeled to be in sushi restaurants — just as CBSLA learned, only on a larger scale. This may be because only 1 percent of imported seafood is actually tested for fraud, although 90 percent of seafood consumed in the U.S. is imported. So, if you’re eating out, ask for wild-caught and sockeye salmon, which are not farmed and which are very difficult to fake.

At home, canned salmon labeled "Alaskan salmon" is also a good choice and offers a less expensive alternative to salmon fillets. Fresh or canned, if you want to maximize health benefits from fish, steer clear of farmed fish, particularly farmed salmon, and even more specifically genetically engineered farmed salmon, especially if you’re seeking to improve your omega-3 to omega-6 ratio.
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