I found a fun and useful tool today, it's called the Tuna Calculator and you can find it on the Environmental Working Group's website (EWG). This nifty tool is helpful for you to understand the mercury toxicity that you can incur on yourself just by eating a delicious tuna sandwich. The tool asks for your weight and your gender and it will calcluate for you the maximum 'safe' amount of albacore tuna you can eat per week. This of course, assumes that you do not consume any other seafood.
Did you know?
The FDA recommends that women of child bearing age and children under the age of 5 not consume any albacore tuna at all due to the high amounts of mercury found in these fish. Mercury (as well as other heavy metals) is transferred from mother to child during pregnancy via cord blood and breast milk after birth. This is why I have been a huge proponent of women who want to get pregnant to do some heavy metal testing and chelation (removal of heavy metals) prior to getting pregnant. This may in the long run allow us all to have healthier children, not to mention healthier adults.
According to the EWG's tuna calculator an average woman weighing 130 pounds can eat 4.1 ounces of albacore tuna (about 1/2 can) weekly if she does not eat ANY other seafood to get the maximum safe amount of mercury intake. Of course this does not take into account the amount of PCBs and DDT/DDE in the fish, just mercury.
Safer Seafood Choices
Oceans Alive, an environmental group that monitors safe seafood has made a useful list of the safer seafoods available for Americans to eat. You can find the list on their website. Here you will find the best and worst seafoods available on the market.
The good news is that Black Sea Bass (aka butterfish) which is one of my favorite fishes due to its consistency (similar to Chilean Sea Bass) is one of the safest fishes available. Here is some fish trivia for you. Did you know that the Black Sea Bass changes sex over its lifetime? It starts out as a female fish and later becomes a male fish. Go figure!