Methyl Mercury in Sportfish - Information for Fish Consumers


Methylmercury is a form of mercury that is found in most freshwater and saltwater fish. In some lakes, rivers, and coastal waters in California, methylmercury has been found in some types of fish at concentrations that may be harmful to human health. The Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) has issued health advisories to fishers and their families giving recommendations on how much of the affected fish in these areas can be safely eaten. In these advisories, women of childbearing age and children are encouraged to be especially careful about following the advice because of the greater sensitivity of fetuses and children to methylmercury. 

Fish are nutritious and should be a part of a healthy, balanced diet. As with many other kinds of food, however, it is prudent to consume fish in moderation. OEHHA provides advice to the public so that people can continue to eat fish without putting their health at risk.

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