12 Types Of Fish That Are Best Not To Eat

Table of contents:

12 Types Of Fish That Are Best Not To Eat
12 Types Of Fish That Are Best Not To Eat

Video: 12 Types Of Fish That Are Best Not To Eat

Video: Top 3 Best Fish vs. Worst Fish to Eat: Thomas DeLauer 2022, November

In the Soviet Union, Thursday was a special day - fish. All catering establishments fed their guests with fish-based dishes. Boiled pollock, fried cod, capelin cutlets - the list goes on! On the one hand, the country's leadership instilled in the population healthy habits - eating fish and seafood; on the other hand, it “saved” on meat, which was in short supply at that time.


But be that as it may, everyone received the health benefits of eating fish dishes. High-quality fish enriched the body with protein, useful monounsaturated fats, Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, as well as minerals.

Unfortunately, today, due to environmental poisoning, the crisis in the industry and developed poaching, many fish species contain hazardous substances - industrial chemicals, toxins and pesticides, are infected with parasites. Which marine abodes should be permanently excluded from the diet, and which can be consumed after careful examination?

1. Northern sea bass

This fish lives in the northern part of the Pacific Ocean. It is characterized by a high content of mercury, which accumulates in the body and can lead to severe poisoning. An adult can eat such fish no more than twice a month, and pregnant women and children, it is better to refuse it altogether.


The main cause of environmental pollution with mercury, which then enters seafood and along the chain into the human body, is modern industry. Mercury is released into the atmosphere during the combustion of coal to generate electricity, during the combustion of fossil fuels - oil and natural gas, during the disposal (incineration) of industrial waste.

Mercury is used in the manufacture of thermometers, light bulbs and switches, and if not properly disposed of, it will also enter the environment.

Studies have shown that mercury levels in seafood are higher the further down the food chain the food is. Fish that consume plankton contain less mercury than larger fish that feed on small fish.



2. Atlantic flounder

As the name implies, this fish lives in the Atlantic Ocean. Like many other species that are caught in its waters, it can contain toxic substances and heavy metals. Of particular concern is the fish found on the Atlantic coast of the United States.

Due to overfishing and heavy pollution, the Atlantic flounder population has declined sharply, leading to poaching. Today the risk of getting infected or spoiled fish is very high.

3. Chilean sea bass

This species is on the verge of extinction, so its capture is prohibited. Nevertheless, in many countries of the world it is easy to find Chilean sea bass on the restaurant menu. This means that the fish was caught illegally, or a completely different product is being sold under its guise.

In any case, this type of fish is associated with a high mercury content. The international environmental organization Greenpeace also warns that if people do not stop eating this type of fish, it will completely disappear within 5 years.


Chilean sea bass is the marketing name for the fish. In fact, its name is "Patagonian toothfish". A fish with such a name was not in demand among the population, so they came up with a more sonorous name that “pleases the ear”.

4. Tile

This fish is recommended to be excluded from the menu for everyone who cares about their health. The United States Environmental Protection Agency has recognized it as one of the most dangerous species because of its high concentration of mercury.

Brian Clement, co-director of the Hippocratic Institute for Health, says that the catch of this fish most often occurs in violation of standards, hence the high probability of serving a spoiled product.

5. King mackerel

Catching this predator is considered a great success for the angler: the larger the fish, the better! However, researchers refute the existing opinion.

King mackerel is famous for its very high mercury levels. Scientists explain that the reason for the contamination of the waters in which it lives (from South Florida to North Carolina) is often the activity of coal-fired power plants and other industrial facilities.

The longer the life span of a fish and the larger it is in size, the greater the content of mercury in its body. Although some anglers believe that this fish is safe to eat if it is less than 33 inches in length and weighs less than 10 pounds, this is not the case.



6. Swordfish

This large fish is a valuable fishing object. Its mild taste and almost complete absence of bones make it desirable for chefs in the best restaurants in the world. They often serve this fish raw by simply slicing it into thin strips and sprinkling it with lemon juice. And this is the main danger!

Swordfish contain a high concentration of mercury, even when compared to larger specimens of other species. It also contains a powerful neurotoxin called methylmercury. It easily crosses the placenta of pregnant women and can damage the nervous system of an unborn child.


A San Francisco study with 123 volunteers found that among respondents who ate 30 different fish species, mercury levels were higher in those who ate swordfish more often. In addition, the concentration of mercury in the body exceeded the maximum allowable value determined by the National Academy of Sciences, USA.

7. Atlantic Bighead

It takes an Atlantic bighead 40 years to reach maturity! The long reproductive cycle and illegal fishing have led to a decline in the population of this species.

At the same time, bigheads are among the most dangerous fish on the planet! Large, brick-red fish can live up to 100 years, while accumulating more and more mercury and other toxins every year.

Regular consumption of this fish can lead to unfortunate health consequences, so it is not worth eating, even though it is a source of Omega-3 fatty acids.

8. Shark

Environmental Protection Fund, USA does not recommend including predator meat in food, as it is high in mercury. In addition, the shark population is now at unprecedented levels as a result of poachers. Scientists estimate that about half of the fish die each year when another fish is caught.


Some species of fish, including white sharks, can raise their own body temperature. This helps them hunt for prey in cold water.

9. Atlantic bluefin tuna

A recent study by the New York Times found bluefin tuna have significantly higher mercury levels than other types of tuna. And an explanation has not yet been found for this fact.

Today bluefin tuna is recognized as a population on the verge of destruction, its catch is controlled by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Wild salmon from the waters of Alaska is recommended as an alternative to this product.



10. Escolar

This species is ranked among the gourmet seafood. And, nevertheless, you should not lean on it. Escolar contains an indigestible fatty substance called gempilotoxin, a wax ester. It is its content that determines the sugary-oily texture of the fish and the characteristic taste, but it can also cause serious intestinal problems, leading to diarrhea. The maximum serving for an adult that can be eaten at one time is 150-170 grams


Most lipstick brands use fish scales to give their products a beautiful iridescent effect.

11. Tilapia

This type of fish is indifferent to the conditions of detention - both to the quality of the water and the temperature regime. It is very unpretentious and can withstand any experiments. The cost of fish is minimal, which makes it in demand among buyers. However, doctors do not support consumer optimism about the value of this fish.

In addition to the fact that the catch itself may be contaminated due to being kept in polluted artificial reservoirs, the second danger is that tilapia is a very fatty fish. For this indicator, it is even compared to bacon. This ratio of fatty acids in fish makes it potentially harmful to health and shape.

12. Red snapper

This fish is among the protected by the international community. The population of red snapper declined sharply in the 1980s and has not yet been recovered. Nevertheless, the product is in great demand on the market, therefore it is often falsified.

One of the most common substitution options is tilapia, which we talked about above. In this case, the best alternative to red snapper, according to experts, is black cod.



Expert commentary

Elena Kalen, nutritionist, expert in weight loss psychology, certified coach

- Fish in the diet is useful because it contains protein, which is easier to digest than meat protein, as well as calcium, healthy fats, in small amounts of trace elements such as iodine, manganese and copper. It is the healthy fats of marine fish that have such a beneficial effect on the cardiovascular system, mental abilities and the reproductive system.

However, not all fish are good for health because they are frozen, and often rotten and illiquid. It is this kind of fish that most often meets people on the shelves, sadly, but true.

When choosing fish, special attention should be paid to its freshness. How? By the color of the gills! If the fish is fresh, then its gills are bright, not yellowed or darkened.

The eyes of such a fish should not be cloudy and when pressing on the carcass, liquid should not be released, and the smell should be fishy, ​​and not some other. And even more so, the fish is far from the first freshness, if there is damage to the carcass or the belly is swollen.

It is fresh fish that will be beneficial to health. Of course, there are certain types of fish that are the best and tastiest - trout, salmon, sturgeon, pink salmon, herring and mackerel. They will benefit your health through healthy fats and amino acids.

When choosing fish, one should be guided not only by the species, but primarily by the freshness, since river carp will be more useful than frozen pink salmon. And it is not at all worth stopping your choice on pangasius, since this fish was grown in an unfavorable ecological place, namely, in the murky waters of the Mekong River in Vietnam, where sewage from all factories and agricultural fields is dumped.

Also, do not dwell on lightly salted herring, since it can simply lie in a solution consisting of formaldehyde, vinegar and urotropine. Of course, nothing will happen at once with such a herring, but if you do it regularly, slow poisoning of the whole body will occur. If you like herring, it is better to purchase it of medium and strong salting, which will then need to be soaked in water or milk.

Not all fish are created equal! Always choose fresh fish, then the benefits will be greater!

Expert commentary

Maria Fadeeva, Federal State Budgetary Institution of National Medical Research Center of Endocrinology, Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation

- Fish is an important source of complete protein with a balanced composition of amino acids, which is an integral part of our diet.Life is impossible without protein, it is used as a building material for the cells of our body, it is a part of all enzymes and part of hormones (for example, insulin, growth hormone, thyroid-stimulating hormone, parathyroid hormone, etc.), some vitamins and medicinal substances, is involved in the protection of the body from infections.

The proteins of the body are dynamic, due to the constant parallel flow of the processes of their synthesis and decay. At the same time, unlike fats and carbohydrates, they do not accumulate in our body and are not synthesized. And this dictates the need for constant replenishment of their stocks, which is possible only with food.

The protein requirement for healthy middle-aged people is on average 1 g per 1 kg of normal body weight for a given person (on average, 60-80 g of protein per day). Fish is extremely rich in protein - its amount in fish varies from 10 to 21-22%. Most fish varieties contain more than 15 g of protein per 100 g.

Fish is also rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids Omega-3, which normalize lipid metabolism and support patients with atherosclerosis and arterial hypertension, reducing inflammation.

However, it must be remembered that fish is a source of so-called "latent" fat and cholesterol. Moreover, the amount of cholesterol in some types of fish is much higher than in meat.

Very fatty fish with up to 30% fat include lamprey, eel, white fish. Fat varieties with a fat content of 8 to 20% include sardines, stellate sturgeon, salmon, saury, herring, and mackerel. Carp, low-fat herring, pink salmon, bream, catfish, tuna are moderately fatty with a fat content of 3 to 8%. Lean fish (up to 3% fat) are pollock, hake, flounder, crucian carp, perch, pike perch, cod, pike.

The inclusion of less fatty lean varieties of fish in the diet is used in the preparation of dietary rations for the treatment of overweight and obesity. Fish, like meat, is rich in purines, the consumption of which must be reduced for people with gout and urate nephrolithiasis; vitamins of group B, as well as A and D (especially the liver). Iodine, zinc, etc. are present in sea fish.

The beneficial properties of fish necessitate its inclusion in the diet 2-3 times a week.

Popular by topic