Quickpost: Great Guide, Fish Fantastic or Poisson Poison

I love seafood, and rely on fish a great deal as a delicious source of lean protein. In fact, recently I particularly upped my tuna and salmon intake,  as I’ve become much more conscious of endurance athletes’ higher-than-average protein needs.  Ironically, however, shortly after Dave and I concluded “more might be better” regarding protein and naturally began incorporating more fish into meals, I was assigned a local story on mercury poisoning.  The research has been fascinating! Most people cannot imagine just how widespread this issue is, or how dangerous it can be. What has made this study even more intriguing is the fact that out here in a rather picturesque corner of Colorado, we have supreme resources for analyzing, diagnosing, and treating mercury toxicity (which offers a bit of reassurance, too, needless to say). Quicksilver Scientific, for example,  located in nearby Lafayette, is a clinical lab currently the only one of its kind in the world, based on advanced, unique technology for separating and analyzing specific forms of mercury by utilizing liquid chromatography separation and atomic fluorescence measurement. Talking with Quicksilver’s president and founder, Dr. Chris Shade, it’s clear that fish consumption is far from the only threat of mercury exposure. However, it’s still significant. In another vein, choosing fish can be tricky from a sustainability standpoint, too. How to keep track of all these factors, yet still enjoy the benefits of fish, rich with nutrients and healthful oils? Well, I just came across the Environmental Defense Fund’s Seafood Selector, and it’s definitely a solid start. Not only does it sort fish in terms of the most eco-friendly, it includes printable pocket guides, recipes, sushi selection, and information on mercury and other relevant topics. Definitely check it out!

Photo credit: Flikr user mrjorgen

  1. Kirsten
    April 10, 2010

    I carry the pocket guide with me in my wallet. I started following the guide lines quit a while ago. It is a lot harder now to find fish that is the “best choice” but I try to make it work.

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