It is a fact: mercury can be found in tuna. The myth is that the quantity is exorbitant. Unfortunately, to the misinformed, the trace amounts of mercury present in tuna can be a deterrent to consuming a food that has health benefits far exceeding any possible health risk.
The most common sources for fish to accumulate mercury are ecosystem based. Fish absorb mercury through skin, scale, or muscle, and byconsuming other creatures that contain mercury. Most of the mercury found in the oceans where tuna is collected is naturally occurring from sources such as natural mineral deposits or underwater geysers (known as hydrothermal vents) which form from deep fissures in the earth's crust.
Smart consumers educate themselves on the risks of eating certain types of fish. Predatory fish, for instance, that ingest a large quantity of other fish are apt to contain higher amounts of mercury. Canned tuna, with the exception of albacore or white tuna, is relatively low in mercury levels due to the fact that the harvested fish are typically younger and less large then the non-canned tuna.
Tuna is a nutrient-rich food. It is a budget-friendly source of protein and it is also contains minerals such as selenium, magnesium, and potassium as well as important vitamins D, niacin, B1 and B6. Tuna is most renowned for being an excellent source of omega-3 essential fatty acids which are vital to maintaining a healthy heart. The trace amounts of mercury found in some tuna certainly shouldn't overshadow or negate the multiple health benefits reaped from consuming a nourishing, economical, versatile and delicious food.