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5 Ways to Limit Mercury 1 that are Choose fish lower in mercury. More Information 2 that have Don’t eat fish Environmental Protection Agency: www.epa.gov/ost/fish the most mercury. Food and Drug Administration: 3 smaller – Eat fewer – or www.cfsan.fda.gov or call the FDA’s Food Information Hotline toll-free at: 1-888-SAFEFOOD (1-888-723-3366) servings of fish. New York State Fish Advisories: 4 fish. Choose smaller www.health.state.ny.us/environmental/ outdoors/fish/fish.htm Eat Fish, Call 311 or visit nyc.gov/health for more copies of this brochure. 5 of fish. Eat a variety Choose Wisely Protect Against Mercury A Guide for Pregnant and Breastfeeding Women and Young Children EHS1317601 - 6.07 Know Your Serving Size Weekly Servings of Fish and Shellfish Many people eat fish Recommended for Pregnant and A typical adult serving size is 4 to 6 ounces. A child’s Breastfeeding Women, and Young Children and shellfish as part of serving should be smaller. If you eat larger portions, eat fish less often than recommended in the chart. Based on an adult serving size of 6 ounces. a healthy diet. A child’s serving should be smaller. • To estimate serving sizes, read food labels or Fish is high in protein, low in calories, and rich in ask about weight. VERY LOW IN MERCURY Eat Up to 5 Servings a Week nutrients. But fish may also contain mercury. Most • A 4-ounce fish steak or fillet is about the size people can eat fish without being concerned about • Anchovies • Pollock and thickness of a deck of cards. • Clams • Salmon* mercury, but pregnant and breastfeeding women, • Crawfish/Crayfish • Sardines and young children should choose fish wisely. • Restaurant servings are often much larger than • Hake • Shrimp the recommended serving size. • Herring • Tilapia • A typical pair of nigiri sushi, sashimi or a • Oysters • Whiting Mercury Can Harm Babies and single sushi roll contains about 2 ounces of fish. * Some farmed salmon contain high Young Children To avoid harmful bacteria, pregnant women levels of other contaminants During pregnancy, mercury can pass from a should not eat raw fish. LOW IN MERCURY Eat Up to 2 Servings a Week mother to her baby. In smaller amounts, it can • Butterfish • Mullet also pass into breast milk. Mercury can cause • Catfish • Mussels learning problems in children by harming the • Cod • Perch developing brain. • Crab (Ocean or White) • Croaker (Atlantic) • Scallops Most babies whose mothers eat fish in pregnancy • Flounder • Shad (American) are born healthy and develop well. Still, the less a • Haddock • Sole child is exposed to mercury, the better. • Jacksmelt • Squid/Calamari • Mackerel • Trout (Freshwater) To protect their babies, women who are pregnant (North Atlantic) • Tuna (Canned Light) or planning pregnancy and breastfeeding mothers • Whitefish should eat fish that are lower in mercury and limit the amount of fish they eat. HIGH IN MERCURY Eat No More Than One Serving a Week To protect their children, parents should choose fish • Bass (Black, • Scorpionfish that are lower in mercury and limit the amount Saltwater, Striped) • Sheepshead • Bluefish • Skate they serve to children younger than 6 years. • Eel • Snapper • Halibut • Tuna (Albacore • Lobster or Canned White)* Some Fish Have Too Much Mercury • Monkfish • Weakfish/Sea Trout • Sablefish Most fish contain some mercury, and some * Limit to 4 ounces contain a lot. Larger fish and fish that eat other fish tend to have more mercury. TOO HIGH IN MERCURY Don’t Eat These Fish! When people eat fish, the amount of mercury • Chilean Sea Bass • Shark they take in depends on: • Grouper • Swordfish • Mackerel • Tilefish • What kind of fish they eat, (King or Spanish) • Tuna (Fresh, • Marlin Steaks, Sushi) • How often they eat it, and • Orange Roughy • How much fish they eat at each meal. Don’t eat fish or shellfish caught in local New York City waters – they may contain other contaminants.
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