Does your canned tuna or salmon have arsenic or mercury without much DHA and EPA?

Kirkland Salmon.jpg

Consumer Lab just released a recent review of canned salmon and tuna with some pretty shocking results. Many of the canned products have higher amounts of contaminants and much less of the beneficial omega 3 fats, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) than expected. 

The products with the highest levels of mercury contamination are listed below (in order from highest level to lower, but still significant level). Note that most are tuna, because tuna is higher on the food chain and lives longer. They eat other fish that have taken in contaminants and have more time to accumulate contaminants.

  • Bumble Bee Solid White Albacaore Canned Tuna In Water

  • Vital Choice Solid White Albacore Tuna

  • Wild Planet Wild Albacore Tuna

  • Chicken Of The Sea White Albacore Tuna In Water

  • Kirkland Signature Albacore White Tuna In Water

  • Wild Planet Skipjack Wild Tuna

The products with the highest levels of arsenic contamination are listed below (in order from highest level to lower, but still significant level) Note that some products appear on both lists so definitely avoid those!

  • Starfish Selects Solid Yellowfin Tuna in Extra Virgin Olive Oil

  • Bumble Bee Solid White Albacaore Canned Tuna In Water

  • Chicken Of The Sea White Albacore Tuna In Water

  • Kirkland Signature Albacore White Tuna In Water

The products with lower levels of DHA and EPA reported are listed below, with the actual DHA/EPA levels.

  • Safe Catch Elite Solid White Tuna Steak (45 mg/0 mg)

  • Bumble Bee Solid White Albacaore Canned Tuna In Water (67 mg/0 mg)

  • Starfish Selects Solid Yellowfin Tuna in Extra Virgin Olive Oil (107 mg/0 mg)

  • Trader Joes Chunk Light Skipjack Tuna In Water With Sea Salt (112 mg/17 mg)

  • Chicken Of The Sea White Albacore Tuna In Water (118 mg/22 mg)

  • Genova Yellow Fin Tuna In Extra Virgin Olive Oil With Sea Salt (146 mg/22 mg)

  • Kirkland Signature Albacore White Tuna In Water (190 mg/28 mg)

  • Wild Planet Wild Albacore Tuna (230 mg/50 mg)

  • Kirkland Signature Wild Alaskan Pink Salmon (286 mg/101 mg)

So what should you choose? First, wild salmon will always be a better choice than tuna because the contaminants are lower. The omega fat content is usually higher, as well. If you do choose tuna, limit consumption to no more than once per week and the best option is the Vital Choice Albacore Solid White Tuna. The next best option, albeit not great, is Trader Joe's Chunk Light Skipjack Tuna With Sea Salt. Your best choice is to eat salmon instead of tuna and choose one of these:

  • Deming's Red Sockeye Wild Alaska Salmon

  • Kirkland Signature Wild Alaskan Pink Salmon