The 5 Most Toxic Fish & Seafood to Avoid

Reading Time: 3 minutes Back to 3 minutes version

When it comes to healthy protein, seafood is certainly one of the top choices in the world. Eating more fish can benefit the brain, heart health, and much more. Fish contains an abundance of vitamins, minerals, and omega fats that are essential. In fact, the nutrients that seafood supplies are severely deficient in millions of people around the world. Unfortunately, the number of toxic fish continues to grow around the world with no end in sight.

Millions of Americans are overfed and undernourished. An abundance of research shows glaring deficiencies in vitamin D, zinc, magnesium, potassium, iron, iodine, and omega fats. Consequently, Americans are now one of the unhealthiest cultures in modern times.

Is there a solution to the health epidemic we’re in? Yes, there absolutely is, but it’s not always easy. For starters, changing the amount of healthy foods we consume is vital. The second part is a little trickier, which is avoiding toxic foods on a regular basis. This takes both knowledge and discipline. Unfortunately, many previously healthy foods are now toxic because of how they are grown.

It is our responsibility to look after our own health. Being prudent and aware of what we consume is the first step in improving health. Below is a list of five toxic items that are often go under the radar. It is based on the level of toxicity and popularity of consumption.

1. Farm-Raised Tilapia

Where to even begin with this horrifically tainted mess of a food item. Let’s blame humans, not the tilapia for this one.  Tilapia is now one of the most toxic items in the world due to practices that should be illegal. Tilapia are able to survive in low quality water. As a result, they are oftentimes treated with disgusting feed and chemicals that accumulate.

Tilapia feed contains animal feces, toxic bacteria, and dioxins. Research shows that dioxins and a compound called dibutylin are linked to several diseases. It can take up to 10 years to flush out dioxins. In the meantime, they wreak cellular havoc in a variety of ways. On top of that, farm-raised tilapia contains a terrible ratio of omega 6 to 3 fatty acids.

2. Farm-Raised Salmon

What a tragedy this one is. Salmon, normally one of the healthiest foods in the world, is now one of the most toxic fish in the world. PCBs are very noxious chemicals that are linked to all types of diseases.

On average, farm-raised salmon contains around 8 times the amount of PCBs as wild-caught. Not only that, farm-raised salmon is higher in fat, heavy metals, dioxins, and lower in nutrients. Luckily, wild-caught salmon is still one of the most nutritious foods on earth and usually quite low in toxins. We have to do everything possible to support and enable wild-caught salmon to flourish.

3. Swordfish

Another delicious fish that is now saturated with mercury and other toxins. Being high up on the food chain and predatory in nature, swordfish consumes all types of bottom feeders. The Environmental Defense Fund even warns children and pregnant women from consuming certain types of swordfish. However, it’s obvious that everyone should  limit or avoid it as much as possible. Swordfish that is wild-caught in the North Atlantic may be better as it is monitored more closely.

4. King Mackerel

King Mackerel comes in as one of the most mercury laden fish in the sea. Avoid king mackerel at all costs, mercury and heavy metal toxicity cause such serious harm to the body over time. On the other hand, North Atlantic and chub mackerel are very low in mercury.

5. Imported Farm-Raised Shrimp

Around 25-35% of shipments of imported shrimp get rejected because of how filthy it is. In addition, the shrimp that makes it through is far from healthy. Antibiotics, chemical residues, carcinogens, toxins, and bacterial contamination is the norm for low-quality shrimp. On the other hand, high-quality shrimp is quite nutrient dense and healthy to consume.

There are many more toxic fish that qualify for this list such as orange roughy, marlin, tilefish, and grouper. It’s an absolute hot zone here on planet earth these days. Heavy metal and chemical toxicity ruin lives and are passed down to children. With some careful research and understanding, it’s easy to minimize risks though. Be on the lookout for sources of toxicity to protect yourself and your family.