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Seafood To Make You Sick

There are plenty of ethical reasons not to eat seafood. The oceans’ ecology is being devastated by overfishing for one thing, at the same time that marine life is suffering additional assaults of increasing water pollution and climate change. Much of the seafood that people love to eat comes from fish populations that are on the verge of collapse, such as marlin, salmon, orange roughy and tuna.

Unfortunately, ethical concerns don’t seem to be enough to keep most people from eating seafood. So, what can convince these seafood lovers to put down the fork and think twice before gulping down a dinner of marine life?

resistant seafoodHow about something more selfish: Concern for their own health.

In worrisome news that has been reported by almost no professional news organizations, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Adminsitration reports that antibiotic resistant pathogens in seafood are becoming increasingly common. Think again about that sushi, or those lovely oysters, because if you get sick from disease-causing bacteria in the food, there may be no cure available for you.

The reason for the rise in antibiotic resistance in seafood pathogens has not been firmly established, but NOAA warns that “antibiotics and other toxicants discharged into the waste stream by humans may increase the frequency of antibiotic-resistant Vibrio strains in contaminated coastal environments.” In other words, water pollution, a major cause of the marine ecological crisis, may also be behind the rise in oceanic diseases for which a dose of antibiotics is like a day at the beach.

5 comments to Seafood To Make You Sick

  • Tom

    There was a report on NPR the other day about how fish farms are breeding disease and dumping waste (which also contributes to disease) in the rivers and streams where natural stocks are now declining rapidly as a result. The farmed fish are decidedly NOT better tasting or better for the consumer – it’s all about making MONEY.

  • The best kind of salmon to eat is no salmon at all.

  • I personally like my vegetable sushi.

  • So long as it’s not seaweed veggies, you ought to be fine. Just cut the seafood.

  • Tom

    i think we’re missing the point by avoiding eating the fish we’ve polluted to the point where we can’t eat them – effectively ruining a sustainable food source (like food isn’t going to be a problem). How long before the meat system fails, or the vegetable and fruit supply, or the transportation system that we all depend on without a thought that keeps it all going? Ignoring it doesn’t help.

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