Everybody understands fish is good for you.
In late 2002, a San Francisco Chronicle headline warned that eating fish can be risky due to the high content of mercury in certain deep-water fish. A doctor in Northern California had found that wealthy individuals eating expensive fish, such as swordfish and tuna, were placing themselves at risk for mercury poisoning — even as they had been trying to eat healthier.
In 1 instance, a woman suffered hair loss and elevated levels of mercury in her blood. That spurred Dr. Jane M. Hightower, a professional of internal medicine at San Francisco’s California Pacific Medical Center, to fish around for replies.
Hightower analyzed her own patients, who were wealthy and ate lots of gourmet fish — swordfish, sea bass, halibut and ahi tuna. She found that patients who ate these fish or were experiencing symptoms of mercury exposure (fatigue, headache, joint pain, and diminished memory and concentration) had unacceptable levels of mercury in their blood.
Hightower retested these patients as soon as they abstained in the defendant fish for six months. The elevated levels of mercury vanished. Not surprising, the FDA has issued warnings about significant levels of mercury for a number of these fish.
Fish stays tasty – and healthy
Fish is low in cholesterol and has become the protein of choice for cardiologists and weight-conscious Americans. It’s a fantastic source of omega-3 fatty acids, which have been proven to lower the chance of cardiovascular disease by lowering cholesterol and decreasing the stickiness of blood platelets.
This implies omega-3 fats may lower the risk for stroke.
Studies have shown conclusively that people who consume a diet rich in fatty fish — salmon, sardines, mackerel, anchovies and tuna — are less likely to suffer cardiovascular disease and stroke.
According to a study in The Journal of the American Medical Association, men who ate about three to five ounces of fish one to three times per month were 43 percent less likely to have a stroke through 12 years of followup. Men who ate fish more frequently did not lower their risk any further.