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Health hazards of eating fish >> March A 2007

Fish is yummy and good for you. I like fish. I like sushi. What do I know, but eating fish in moderation sounds like a good idea. Of course, avoid the kinds that are being overfished. But that's another list. Here are my personal rankings of what to worry about when eating fish. I'm not paranoid or particularly worried but it seemed an interesting topic to me. Some of this info about Mercury may freak you out, but I believe everything is ok in moderation if it tastes good. Unless you're pregnant and you live next to a industrial chemical plant. Then you're screwed. You could eat only things like bulgar wheat and Purified water and end up with Quatto.


1) Choking on a fish bone - Solution: fish milkshake? eat slowly? swallow whole? only eat sardines? (somehow this is relevant...hmmmm)

If the patient is a child, place him face downward over your lap, and slap him vigorously between the shoulders. If this does not remove the obstruction, then compress the nostrils, which forces him to open the mouth and throat widely, introduce the fingers of the other hand quickly into the throat and try to grasp the obstructing object. If this is not possible, tickle the palate with a feather, a finger, or with a handkerchief rolled to a point. The tickling will cause coughing or hawking which may dislodge the obstruction.

An adult may throw himself over a chair or table, the head hanging downward, while another slaps him vigorously between the shoulders or, if necessary, performs the operations described in the previous paragraph.


2) Food Poisoning - Ciguatera: Even cooking or freezing doesn't get rid of this. Scombroid poisoning: Eat fresh fish and cook it well. Both are only rarely fatal. Otherwise it will wear off after a week or two at the most. I'm not going to bother mentioning that poisonous pufferfish that has to be prepared exactly or you die. Oh shoot why not... see the third link down.

3) Mercury - Spooky because how can you tell until you're afflicted? WooOOOoo! I've heard you are supposed to eat chunk light instead of white albacore. Avoid large fish like swordfish, tuna and shark. Eat fish just once or twice a week. Read all the advice here below. They get more boring as you go down the list. There is even a personal Mercury calculator. Yesss!

4) Pesticides and PCBs - Avoid eating sketchy or exotic fish by checking the no-no lists...(see link below) unless you are apathetic and resigned to the fact that pretty much all food has the risk of some deadly/painful/pukey toxin or bacteria or something. If you are concerned you should read all about it, but my guess is that the stress from reading all that will do as much harm as the toxins themselves.

5) Getting Fat - I say Bah!... unless I eat pounds of deep-fried reconstituted scrod and slather on tons of mayonnaise accompanied by salty french fries and a pitcher of beer, I'm not especially worried about getting fat from eating fish. Hell, I'm not worried even with all that. It's worth it. I don't have any references to back that up so here's a recipe instead:,1977,FOOD_9936_22731,00.html


General info:



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