Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-03-2005, 10:21 AM   #1
Moderator Emeritus
Nords's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Oahu
Posts: 26,616
Scared of seafood & mercury?

Slate.com has an interesting article on contaminated seafood that mentions the FDA's seafood mercury calculator. (TH, I'm still trying to find out who paid for the mercury testing-- the salmon industry or the beef packers.)

I've been eating fish for lunch almost every day-- usually opening a can of tuna or heating frozen salmon & swordfish filets. (Ahi is yummy and mahi-mahi is OK too.) I've been chowing down about two pounds a week. According to the "world's best data" in the calculator, keeping swordfish in the rotation puts my weekly mercury exposure at 670% of the EPA limit... and researchers are beginning to think that the limit itself should be lowered.

Substituting mahi-mahi drops the weekly dose to "just" 180%. Eliminating swordfish, mahi-mahi, and ahi gets it down to 150%, and this calculator doesn't discuss PCBs or other contaminants. But having only salmon & tuna as fishy favorites seems pretty boring.

I don't have any symptoms ("The earliest and most frequent symptom is a fine tremor of the hand") but I guess that I'm done with swordfish. Fish-oil pills don't seem very exciting, even if they're contaminant-free. Anyone know where I can find out if Hawaii seafood is somehow cleaner than the FDA's average numbers?

I'm no hypochondriac but I'm relieved to know that chronic fatigue isn't a primary symptom of mercury poisoning. Maybe boomeritis really is caused by excessive surfing, martial arts, & yardwork.

I can see the boomer ad campaign now-- "Beef. It's classic rock's answer to heavy metal!"
__________________

__________________
*
*

The book written on E-R.org, "The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Retirement", on sale now! For more info see "About Me" in my profile.
I don't spend much time here anymore, so please send me a PM. Thanks.
Nords is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-04-2005, 01:27 PM   #2
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Houston
Posts: 1,435
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

I stopped eating swordfish because the reports are that it's being dangerously overfished and the entire species could suffer as a result.

Of course, now they are finding that farm raised salmon have much more bacteria and fungus (NYT article recently) than their wild & free brethren. The only safe thing to eat anymore is Whole Food's fair-trade-certified organic decafinated artisan-crafted no-sugar-added tofu, which costs $18.99/lb.
__________________

__________________
soupcxan is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-04-2005, 01:56 PM   #3
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
cute fuzzy bunny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Losing my whump
Posts: 22,697
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

I guess you could make your own tofu...saw it done on tv once...didnt look that hard.

Of course, you'd have to milk your own soybeans. I've spent hours looking them over and over and have yet to find a nipple...
__________________
Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
cute fuzzy bunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-04-2005, 02:09 PM   #4
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
BUM's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Mid Hudson Valley
Posts: 1,778
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

Disclaimer (CHP):

Youse guys gotta relax.

Nords, you started this thread. You dont seem that concerned that your Hg levels exceed FDA recommendations. I'm not concerned either. If you like the fish, eat the fish. I can't get enough of the stuff.

GD-ER, au jus with that? end cut? My man!

TH, Hg levels are scary but not really really scary. Our environment is toxic. Oxygen is bad for you. But (most of) our immune systems figure it out and we do ok...then die.

Soup, you must be eating way too much swordfish if the species are suffering. Otherwise your abstension is negligible.

This week's homework: Eat some seafood. Have some beef. Take a drink of tapwater (TH, take a ride on the wild side and bypass your water filter... I'm between filters at the moment ).

Motto: Do it all...in moderation.

BUM
__________________
In a panamax down by the river.
BUM is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-04-2005, 02:21 PM   #5
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 802
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

There are bigger killers out there.

The food processing industry has been polluting the food supply for decades with hydrogenated vegetable oils (trans fats).

Ditto with corn sweetener glucose-fructose.

ER's and their families' should have been avoiding these like a plague.

Read the ingredients in a Krispy Kreme donut!
__________________
Zipper is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-04-2005, 03:16 PM   #6
Moderator Emeritus
Nords's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Oahu
Posts: 26,616
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

Quote:
Youse guys gotta relax.
Can't argue with that.

Quote:
Nords, you started this thread. You dont seem that concerned that your Hg levels exceed FDA recommendations. I'm not concerned either. If you like the fish, eat the fish. I can't get enough of the stuff.
It's just the feeling of betrayal that a lifelong "healthy" choice is that bad a deal. *I'd be OK with 100% but 670%-- and chronic exposure at that.

I felt the same betrayal after hearing for years that nuclear radiation exposure was OK at up to five rem per year. *Then in the early 1990s the research community quietly made everything more dangerous by a factor of THREE. *I have a relatively puny exposure but I don't want to join the atomic vets OR the swordfish swallowers...

Ah, well. *There are worse things in life than choking down salmon & tuna. *And fish-oil capsules...

Hey, GD-ER-- if you blissfully enjoy beef, then don't EVER read Eric Schlosser's "Fast Food Nation". Not even if you're curious. You just don't want to know.
__________________
*
*

The book written on E-R.org, "The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Retirement", on sale now! For more info see "About Me" in my profile.
I don't spend much time here anymore, so please send me a PM. Thanks.
Nords is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-04-2005, 03:34 PM   #7
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Eagle43's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: DFW
Posts: 1,879
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

And I was a Vitamin "E" freak; then out came the report. I love coffee; is caffine in or out this week. I hear the vegetarians get stomach cancer twice as much as carnivores, who have their own problems with heart attacks and strokes.

Thankfully, wine is ok. Cheers
__________________
Resist much. Obey Little. . . . Ed Abbey

Disclaimer: My Posts are for my amusement only.
Eagle43 is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-04-2005, 05:17 PM   #8
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 557
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

Quote:
The only safe thing to eat anymore is Whole Food's fair-trade-certified organic decafinated artisan-crafted no-sugar-added tofu, which costs $18.99/lb.

oh boy, now there's something to look forward to in retirement!
__________________
uncledrz is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-05-2005, 09:41 AM   #9
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 107
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

90% of all beef processed has received hormone treatment at some time in their life.

Hormone use in chickens is illegal per FDA regulations and no reputable chicken company is going to risk their reputation by trying to get around this.

Eat more CHICKEN

The Pollo Loco!!
__________________
polloloco is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-05-2005, 09:49 AM   #10
Moderator Emeritus
Martha's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: minnesota
Posts: 13,212
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

Quote:
90% of all beef processed has received hormone treatment at some time in their life.

Hormone use in chickens is illegal per FDA regulations and no reputable chicken company is going to risk their reputation by trying to get around this.

Eat more CHICKEN

The Pollo Loco!!

But have you read about contamination from what is known in the industry as "fecal soup"? :-/
__________________
.


No more lawyer stuff, no more political stuff, so no more CYA

Martha is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-05-2005, 11:40 AM   #11
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Hyperborea's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Silicon Valley
Posts: 1,008
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

Quote:
Hormone use in chickens is illegal per FDA regulations and no reputable chicken company is going to risk their reputation by trying to get around this.

Eat more CHICKEN
Of course there's the problem of arsenic and antibiotic laced chickens. *The heavy use of antibiotics to prevent disease and encourage growth in chickens is speeding the development of antibiotic resistant diseases.
__________________
Hyperborea is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-05-2005, 03:30 PM   #12
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 107
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

Antibiotics do not have an effect on viruses, only on bacteria. Never have. Antibiotic resistant bacterial strains have been the result of over prescriptiion by the medical community, such as giving antibiotics for viral infections.
__________________
polloloco is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-06-2005, 07:01 AM   #13
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
grumpy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 1,321
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

Regarding mercury in seafood:

In 1970 I worked for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration as a programmer. That agency included the National Marine Fisheries Service. They were trying to convince the FDA to ease the restrictions on allowable mercury levels in fish. They had a large database of fish consumption by species from a representative sample of 1500 families. They asked me to write a program that would take the data on average concentration of mercury per species and calculate the mercury consumption levels for the actual seafood eaten by the survey particapants. The results showed that only those families that consumed the most fish were exceeding the existing guidelines. The study was eventually published but the FDA refused to ease the guidelines.

What struck me was the VERY high average mercury levels in particular species of fish. I have stayed away from those ever since. I do not know how today's guidelines and average mercury levels by species compare to those I dealt with. I still try to limit my seafood intake to once a week (usually salmon or shrimp).

Grumpy
__________________
...you can check out any time you like, but you can never leave...
grumpy is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-06-2005, 04:47 PM   #14
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
haha's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Hooverville
Posts: 22,380
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

If you like them, sardines are a handy high Omega-3 lunch that is low on contaminants. I particularly like the KIng Oscar double-row packed in salmon oil. A few years ago I could still buy these packed in Sild(herring) oil, but Americans are gettig too wimpy to go for these anymore.

Anyway, I have a million ways to fix them if I am getting tired of simply mustard and sweet onions and black pepper, which isn't half bad anyway.

Mikey
__________________
"As a general rule, the more dangerous or inappropriate a conversation, the more interesting it is."-Scott Adams
haha is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-06-2005, 06:24 PM   #15
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 420
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

lets not even start about dental fillings....
__________________
preben is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-06-2005, 06:48 PM   #16
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

I remember when we used to open thermometers and play with the mercury. Roll it around on saucers - Lot's of fun

- We found a quart bottle of Mercury in the High School Chemistry Lab. Talk about 'Heavy Metals' - The thing weighed about 40 lbs. - We played with this stuff for a couple months. We had enough that we could plunge our entire fist in it!

Some days I wonder why I am still alive and still having fun 8)
__________________
  Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-06-2005, 07:12 PM   #17
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 118
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

" Some days I wonder why I am still alive and still having fun"

Same here. I remember thinking mercury was particularly fun when I was young. No clue that it was dangerous. Later I worked in a blue collar job in the R&D department of an oil additives manufacturer. I was in daily contact with solvents we now know are carcinogenic (benzene, etc). I am still alive! Yeeha!

rapoole
__________________
rapoole is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-06-2005, 08:34 PM   #18
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 802
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

My 92 year old uncle was a mechanic. His hands would get saturated in dirty engine oil, and at the end of the day he would rinse them in gasoline before laying on the pumice soap.

His son-in-law is a chemist at Esso in Sarnia and formulates oil additives.

He laughs and rolls his eyes at my uncle's story!

He says there are way too many unhealthy additives in gas and oil today, compared to the 40's and 50's.

At least they got the lead out!
__________________
Zipper is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 04-07-2005, 04:23 AM   #19
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 3,875
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

I eat a LOT of fish, fresh and saltwater. If I know
the water is polluted or a particular fish is designated
high in mercury, PBBs, PCBs, you name it, then obviously I stay away. OTOH,
mostly I have no idea. My theory is that you can drive yourself nuts worrying about every source of
carcinogens and other funky stuff.

A quickie! I once employed a machinist who at the end of each shift would wash up in trichlorethylene, or some
other nasty solvent. Don't know if he is still around or
not.

JG
__________________
MRGALT2U is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?
Old 07-28-2005, 02:13 PM   #20
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 454
Re: Scared of seafood & mercury?

Quote:
Originally Posted by HaHa
If you like them, sardines are a handy high Omega-3 lunch that is low on contaminants.
Thanks for that post; it helped get me back into eating them agian.

I've also been eating salmon, kippered herring, and now am getting back into pickled herring again, which I had given up because of the high calories (like the other fish in the list. ) I believe herring is also low mercury, and salmon not too bad.

My local WalMart carries:

Great Value Sardines in water, .45
Great Value Kipper Snacks (smoked canned herring) about $1 I think
Vita Herring in wine sauce (pickled) $5 for 2 lbs.
Frozen boneless skinless raw salmon, about $4 1 lb (price varies)


I looked up info on them, and found my spreadsheet which I think came from the Center for Science in the Public Interest. It says the % of fat coming from Omega 3 is:

16% Herring, kippered
8% Herring, pickled
18% Salmon, Atlantic, farmed
14% Sardines, in tomato sauce (closest to in water)


According to that data, the data on the packages, and my calculations (including an estimate assuming you don't eat the onions in the pickled herring) here's the grams of Omega 3 per calorie:

0.017 Salmon
0.011 Kippers
0.009 Sardines
0.005 Herring


And here's the cost per gram of Omega 3:

0.26 Salmon
0.27 Sardines
0.48 Kippers
1.04 Herring


Of course, which you like and would actually eat is most important. But if you believe the data (I'm a little skeptical of it to be honest) it might help to know that salmon seems to have much more omega 3 per calorie consumed than pickled herring does.

__________________

__________________
lazyday is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Close to ER but scared to death!! bfernand Hi, I am... 4 04-20-2007 01:41 PM
Why are people running scared recently from the market? Olav23 FIRE and Money 24 03-16-2007 07:40 AM
Hi there-- I'm scared OHjosh Hi, I am... 30 05-07-2006 07:03 PM
Hi, Scared to Retire Now jayp465 Hi, I am... 34 03-25-2006 11:01 AM
Confused and scared confused Young Dreamers 32 07-28-2005 12:03 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:12 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.