Chemical Contaminants in Foods

Why is this important?

Fish is an excellent source of protein and contains beneficial omega-3 fatty acids. However, all fish can be contaminated with varying amounts of mercury. Mercury is toxic to the developing brain.

What actions can we take?

  • Serve low-mercury fish. 
    • Pregnant women, breastfeeding women and children under 15 years of age should avoid high-mercury fish like swordfish, shark, marlin, orange roughy, escolar and fresh or frozen tuna. 
    • Choose low-mercury fish such as anchovy, capelin, char, hake, herring, Atlantic mackerel, mullet, pollock (Boston bluefish), salmon, smelt, rainbow trout and lake whitefish. Shellfish such as blue crab, shrimp, clam, mussel and oyster are also low-mercury choices. 
    • When buying canned tuna, opt for light tuna over white or albacore tuna. 
  • Serve fresh and frozen foods (rather than canned foods) whenever possible. Some food cans have a plastic liner that contains Bisphenol A (BPA).

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