What You Need to Know about Mercury in Fish and Shellfish
4. I don't see the fish I eat in the advisory. What should I do?
If you want more information about the levels in the various types of fish
you eat, see the FDA food
safety web site or the EPA
Fish Advisory website.
5. What about fish sticks and fast food sandwiches?
Fish sticks and "fast-food" sandwiches are commonly made from fish
that are low in mercury.
6. The advice about canned tuna is in the advisory, but what's the advice about tuna steaks?
Because tuna steak generally contains higher levels of mercury than canned
light tuna, when choosing your two meals of fish and shellfish, you may eat up
to 6 ounces (one average meal) of tuna steak per week.
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7. What if I eat more than the recommended amount of fish and shellfish in a week?
One week's consumption of fish does not change the level of methylmercury in
the body much at all. If you eat a lot of fish one week, you can cut back for
the next week or two. Just make sure you average the recommended amount per
8. Where do I get information about the safety of fish caught recreationally by family or friends?
Before you go fishing, check your Fishing Regulations Booklet for
information about recreationally caught fish. You can also contact your local
health department for information about local advisories. You need to check
local advisories because some kinds of fish and shellfish caught in your local
waters may have higher or much lower than average levels of mercury. This
depends on the levels of mercury in the water in which the fish are caught.
Those fish with much lower levels may be eaten more frequently and in larger
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For further information about the risks of mercury in fish and shellfish
call the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's food information line toll-free at
1-888-SAFEFOOD or visit FDA's
Food Safety Website
For further information about the safety of locally caught fish and
shellfish, visit the Environmental Protection Agency's
Fish Advisory website or contact your
State or Local Health Department. For information on EPA's actions to
control mercury, visit EPA's mercury