Opening a can of tuna can be more harmful than you think: what you need to know about mercury

Who I am
Elia Tabuenca García
Author and references

It is one of the easiest and fastest meals to prepare - yet canned tuna hides dangerous pitfalls for our health

Don't store avocado like this: it's dangerous

It's one of the easiest and quickest meals to prepare - just open the tin and serve it to the table, perhaps with a salad or some tomatoes. Yet canned tuna hides dangerous dangers for our health.

Consuming a can of tuna is the fastest and easiest way to introduce fish into our diet (without the need to clean it, bone it and cook it) and to take a correct amount of protein and omega 3 fatty acids. healthy and nutritious alternative for those who do not have the time or desire to cook but do not want to turn to fast food to appease their appetite. But we are sure that the canned tuna is it really good for your health?

According to a study conducted in the United States by the National Resource Defense Council (NRDC), tuna is one of the fish with the highest levels of mercury. Mercury is a metal (highly toxic to humans) contained in all the fish we usually eat but, if there are fish (such as salmon and plaice) that contain low levels, others (just like tuna) have higher percentages and are therefore more dangerous. Due to its potentially harmful contribution of mercury to our diet, experts limit the intake of fish to 2-3 times a week: in this way we can reap all the nutritional benefits of this food without being intoxicated.

Levels of mercury contained in fish (Credits: Natural Resources
Defense Council)

If the intake of mercury does not worry the adult population too much, special precautions must be taken in this regard by women in pregnancy. According to a study, in fact, taking too much mercury during pregnancy can be harmful to the fetus: the brain from the baby develops very rapidly, absorbing the mother's nutrients, and mercury can have an impact on this absorption, causing disability and deficit in the 'learning.

In addition, high doses of this metal can cause cognitive problems, blindness and cerebral palsy in infants. For new mothers, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends a maximum fish intake of 340 grams per week - obviously choosing from fish low in mercury but high in omega 3 at the same time.

(Read also: Canned tuna: to be avoided during pregnancy because it is too rich in mercury)

In addition to problems related to pregnancy and gestation, an excess of mercury in the blood can also be harmful to the fertility. According to this study, in fact, too high levels of this metal in the blood cause impediments to reproductive functions, deformation of Leydig cells (present in the testicles of men and responsible for the production of testosterone) and degeneration of the testicles, but also an irregular menstrual cycle. and too abundant in women. therefore, anyone who plans to become a parent should drastically reduce consumption of canned tuna and opt for fish with lower amounts of mercury - if not opt ​​for plant sources of protein, certainly healthier.

  • Follow your Telegram | Instagram | Facebook | TikTok | Youtube

Fonti: NRDC / Mayo Clinic / National Library of Medicine

We also recommend:

  • The most dangerous side effects you should think about before opening a can of tuna
  • Canned tuna and packaged fish: still too much salt and little transparency on fishing conditions
  • Canned tuna: watch out for oil and species. The brands promoted and rejected by Altroconsumo
add a comment of Opening a can of tuna can be more harmful than you think: what you need to know about mercury
Comment sent successfully! We will review it in the next few hours.