Claire Corlett

Fish Food, Fish Tanks, and More
Avoiding Fish for 5 Years Before Pregnancy

Avoiding Fish for 5 Years Before Pregnancy

“Avoiding Fish for 5 Years
Before Pregnancy” If you intentionally
expose people to mercury by feeding them fish like
tuna for 14 weeks and then stop, this is what happens to the level
of mercury in their bloodstream: it goes up, up, up, and then
as soon as you stop the fish, it drops back down, such that you can detox down half in about 100 days. So, the half-life of total mercury
in your blood is approximately 100 days. So, even if you eat a lot of fish,
within a few months of stopping you can clear much of
it out of your blood. But what about
out of your brain? Modelling studies are
all over the place, suggesting half-lives
similar to blood at 69 days all the
way up to 22 years. But when you put it to the test, autopsy studies suggest it
may even be longer still. Once mercury gets into your
brain it can be decades before your body can
get rid of even half of it. So, better than detoxing, is to
not “tox” in the first place. That’s the problem with
these fish advisories, where they tell pregnant
women to cut down on fish. For pollutants with long
half-lives like PCBs and dioxins, temporary decreases in fish
consumption, daily contaminant intake, will not necessarily
translate to appreciable decreases in maternal persistent
organic pollutant body burden, which is what helps determine
the dose that the baby gets. For example, here’s how
much exposure an infant gets to a tumor-promoting pollutant called PCB 153 if their mom ate fish. But if, for one year, mom ate only
half the fish, or no fish at all, it wouldn’t budge levels much. Only if mom cut out all
fish for five years before do you see a really substantial
drop in infant levels. So, that’s the fish
consumption caveat. “The only scenarios that
produced a significant impact on children’s exposures required
mothers to eliminate fish from their diets
completely for 5 years before their children
were conceived.” Substituting plant foods instead
of fish would reduce prenatal and breastfeeding exposures
by 37 percent each and subsequent childhood
exposures by 23 percent. So, “a complete ban on fish consumption may be preferable to targeted, life stage–based fish
consumption advisories…”. But if you are going
to eat fish, which is less polluted— wild-caught or farmed fish? In this recent study, researchers
measured the levels of pesticides like DDT, PCBs, polycyclic aromatic
hydrocarbons, and toxic elements like mercury and
lead in a large sample of farmed and wild-
caught seafood. And, in general, they
found farmed was worse. Think of the suspect as
“farmed and dangerous.” The measured levels of most organic
and many inorganic pollutants were higher in the
farmed seafood products, and consequently intake
levels for the consumer, if such products were consumed. So, for example, this is
for polycyclic hydrocarbons, persistent pesticides, and PCBs:
significantly more contamination in all the farmed fish
samples for all the contaminants; the salmon and seabass, though it
didn’t seem to matter for crayfish, and the wild-caught
mussels were actually worse. And, if you split adult
and child consumers into only eating farmed seafood or only eating wild-caught seafoods,
the level of pollutant exposure would be significantly worse
from the farmed seafood. Overall, they investigated
a total of 59 pollutants and toxic elements and taking
all these data as a whole, and based on the rates
of consumption of fish and seafood in the population in Spain where the researchers hailed from, the results indicate that
a theoretical consumer who chose to consume only
farmed fish would be exposed to levels of pollutants
about twice as high than if they would have chosen
instead wild-caught fish. So, you could eat twice the
amount if you stuck to wild-caught. Easier said than done, though. Mislabeling rates for fish
and other seafood in the U.S. is between 30 and 38 percent; so, the average fraud rate
is like one in three.

62 comments on “Avoiding Fish for 5 Years Before Pregnancy

  1. Fish has become disgusting. I noticed the difference in taste prior to going plant based and I did my best to consume 'wild caught' salmon and tuna. We've turned our oceans and seas into toilet bowls.

  2. If a woman were to do a Mercury, etc detox (i.e. chlorella, cilantro, bentonite clay, activated charcoal, essiac tea) during breastfeeding, would that pose a risk to the child?

  3. Humans have been very destructive to the earths plants and animals.
    We are destroying the very eco systems we need to survive.
    The Climate Crisis is waking people up to the destruction of the planet.
    Will we do anything to stop the poisoning of the planet and the eco systems we need to survive.
    Young people seem to get it and want a better future. Older adults view the world from how it was in the past.
    Individuals, corporations and politicians all need to make changes to reduce the impact of the Climate Crisis.

  4. So where is the human brain to get its supply of DHA from (and please don't mention ALA with its piss-poor conversion rates), and why is fish consumption correlated with slower rates of cognitive decline ?

  5. But Dr, why present mechanistic data of what happens when you eat fish, how the pollutants get more concentrated in the blood.
    What is interesting is OUTCOME data, show us that increase in fish consumption is associated with disease, toxicity etc.
    Who cares if you have more mercury in the brain if you don't show us that is cuts your life short

  6. Why would I ever take advice from such a pale and limp-looking “expert”? If the daily dozen really is so good then why doesn’t Dr. Gregor look radiantly healthy?

  7. I am trying very hard to make the people I know stop eating fish but it is hard for them to fathom that fish is unhealthy. This false Omega 3 needs is making everyone poisoned.

  8. In my previous video on this topic, How Long to Detox from Fish Before Pregnancy (, I mentioned a study that suggests detoxing from fish for one year to see mercury levels decrease, but other pollutants take longer to leave our system.

  9. The problem with pregnant women, is that the root cause of the Anthropocene mass extinction, anthropogenic climate change, factory farming, and industrial fishing; is human overpopulation.

  10. All your channel does is tell us not to eat ANYTHING. I have people in my family who ate whatever they wanted and lived well into their 80s and 90s.

  11. "Detox" mercury in the blood is 100days IF you fed yourself fish for 100days… What if it is years. Because it seems the graph did not reach its max.

  12. Well, everybody's gonna be lead-free in a couple of decades, because there'll be no fish left to eat…

  13. Yeah, but eat a lot of flax, chia, algae oil, seaweed, brazil nuts, supplement B12 and expose to adequate sunlight year-round… Very important addition!

  14. I wonder about amalgam in your fillings? I still have fillings and am 53. If I get them out tomorrow, would it be 27 years before it to detox my brain, too? 🙁

  15. The problem with this one is it treats all fish as having equal amounts of mercury, after starting with Tuna, which is at the top of the chain (and the most polluted).

  16. You have to be a real idiot to eat fish, who live in what is essentially the human sewer and garbage dump that is the ocean.

  17. I could listen to your voice all day !
    You are getting REALLY GOOD at public speaking , Sir !
    Thank you for your brilliant mind and kind heart !!

  18. Testing shrimp for antibiotic-resistant bacteria (Marketplace):

  19. I used to dine at japanese restaurants at least once a week…that’s where most of my seafood consumption came from 🤦🏻‍♂️Thank goodness i’m now on a 100% plant based diet and my health’s skyrocketing 🚀 🌿

  20. Dr. Greger, I have a question. So clearly all fish from the oceans and from farms are highly toxic to consume. What about fish found in lakes in Canada? Here is legal to fish and there are a lot of lakes that are really far from all those contaminants that sadly reach the oceans.
    I'll would love some information about that subject. Thank you

  21. I've been vegan for 5 years and hopefully will have kids in the next couple years. Yet another reason I'm glad to be vegan!

  22. the detrimental effects of mercury in fish is ameliorated by their high content of selenium. like tuna for example, it has very high amount of selenium. selenium is known to bind to mercury.

    many studies on selenium and mercury;
    here, just basics;
    for all the soccer moms and other health freaks hooked on the latest trend in diets, just please use google and see you will find tons of results about this if NCBI is not user friendly enough 🙂

  23. Idiots, as long as the fish has more selenium in it than mercury its literally a non issue. Most fish people eat are full of selenium, this mercury fearmongering is just another tactic to scare people into being vegan, making them avoid one of the best things we can eat and keeping the masses stupid with the lack of DHA. I'm going to have three or four fresh sardines tomorrow just because of this stupid video.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *