Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Here fishy fishy fishy fishy fishy.

An article published this week discusses that more U.S. women face heart, stroke risk. The article talks about things to help prevent heart disease, such as the two usual factors: exercise and diet. I struggle with both of those personally, but I hired a personal trainer at my gym, so that should help the first part.

The second part, diet, talks about eating more fruits and vegetables, whole-grain and high fiber foods and little salt. I find this hard because I cannot finish fruits and vegetables before they go bad. I wish I could go to the store and buy half a bag of salad or something.

It also mentions eating fish at least twice a week. This is another example of conflicting reports. Sorta. Women have to limit their intake of certain fish, such as tuna and swordfish because those fish have high levels of mercury, which may affect any current or future pregnancies. So I can only have one Tuna Melt per week, boo.

EDIT: And just now I read yet ANOTHER story that says the benefits outweight the risks: Seafood in Pregnancy is a Net Plus.

Living near the ocean, I have a lot more access to fresh fish and there are lots of places in the island that sell stuff hauled in this morning. This is exciting. But balancing that, along with knowing I need to watch certain fishes and also realizing that some fish are not sustainably's a lot to think about!

Luckily, there are organizations like the Monterey Bay Aquarium, which has something called the Seafood Watch Program. Its goals are to bring awareness that some fish are not sustainably farmed--a fact that they say could eventually eliminate some kinds or even all fish.

They have guides on their website as to what fish are your best choices, what are good alternatives and what fish to avoid. The guides can be tailored to your geographic area and they will even send you free guides for your wallet or purse, which you can order on their website. (My former co-worker used to carry one around, which is how I became not only aware about that some fish are not sustainably farmed, but also the danger of high mercury levels.)

Here are some examples from the Northeast Guide:

Best choices: Clams, Dungeness crab and imitation crab from the US, Pacific Halibut, Spiny Lobster (U.S. Trap-Caught), Wild-caught Alaska Salmon, US Farmed Tilapia, Tuna (Albacore from BC or the US, Skipjack or Yellowfin from the US)
Good alternatives: Black Sea Bass, Imported-Farmed Catfish, Crab--Blue, imitation, Alaske King; American/Maine Lobster, US Caught Mahimahi or imported using a pole, Swordfish, Central America farmed Tilapia, Shrimp from the northern atlantic and canada.
Avoid!! Wild-caught caviar, Farmed Salmon, Chilean seabass, Imported mahi-mahi using a long-line, orange roughy, imported shrimp, Chinese farmed Tilapia, tuna caught using a long-line.

And with that, I leave you with a favorite Sesame Street clip that inspired the title of my post:


maya said...

how can you go to a store and figure out what kind of fish is long-line caught or not? or is usually u.s. fish that aren't long-line caught?

also this summre i'll eat mountains of crab with you. i love it!

maya said...

summre = summer btw.

Shruti on the Shore said...

Yeah, that's the problem is knowing. I mean, even Whole Foods sells "farm-raised salmon" as if that's a good thing. They downplay their wild-caught salmon by saying its previously frozen.

I want to learn how to make more crab dishes! We can do that together =)