LIFESTYLE
26/11/2013 06:29 GMT | Updated 26/11/2013 06:34 GMT

Is Sushi Healthy? Mercury In Fish May Increase Heart Disease Risk And Affect Brain Performance

While many believe that sushi is a healthy, low-calorie meal - a welcome lunch alternative to fast food or pre-packaged sarnies oozing with mayonnaise - new research suggests that the contents of your bento box may not be that good for you.

People who eat sushi on a regular basis may be exposing themselves to high levels of mercury, which can lead to increased risk of heart disease and poorer cognitive performance.

According to the report, the highest level of methylmercury - a toxic compound that forms when mercury binds with organic molecules in the environment - can be found in tuna, shark, swordfish and marlin.

As far as sushi is concerned, tuna sashimi contains the highest levels of methylmercury. Where as sushi made with eel, crab, salmon and kelp were found to have lower levels.

sushi

Study authors note that increased levels of methylmercury can thwart the positive effects of omega-3 fatty acids, believed to reduce cholesterol and risk of certain cancers.

The research, published in the Journal of Risk Research, surveyed more than 1,200 people in the USA about their fish consumption.

The study noted that 92% of respondents ate five fish meals per month, while 77% ate more than three meals per month.

Does this put you off eating sushi or fish? Let us know in the comments below

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