Seafood Mercury Intake Calculator
all fish and shellfish contain traces of mercury. For most people, the risk
from mercury by eating fish and shellfish is not a health concern. Yet, some
fish and shellfish contain higher levels of mercury that may harm an unborn
baby or young child's developing nervous system. The risks from mercury in fish
and shellfish depend on the amount of fish and shellfish eaten and the levels
of mercury in the fish and shellfish.
By following these three recommendations for selecting and eating fish
or shellfish, women and young children will receive the benefits of eating fish
and shellfish and be confident that they have reduced their exposure to the harmful
effects of mercury.
- Do not eat Shark, Swordfish, King Mackerel, or Tilefish because they contain
high levels of mercury.
- Eat up to 12 ounces (2 average meals) a week of a variety of fish and shellfish
that are lower in mercury. Five of the most commonly eaten fish that are low
in mercury are shrimp, canned light tuna, salmon, pollock, and catfish. Another
commonly eaten fish, albacore ("white") tuna has more mercury than
canned light tuna. So, when choosing your two meals of fish and shellfish,
you may eat up to 6 ounces (one average meal) of albacore tuna per week.
- Check local advisories about the safety of fish caught by family and friends
in your local lakes, rivers, and coastal areas. If no advice is available,
eat up to 6 ounces (one average meal) per week of fish you catch from local
waters, but don't consume any other fish during that week.
If the calculated result is less than 0.7 below, your Mercury levels are likely
within the Environmental Protection Agency's recommended range. If your results
exceed 0.7, your levels may well be higher than EPA recommends. Check with
your local health department, the Federal Department of Health and Human Services
or the EPA for more details.