Whether you’re vegetarian or vegan, by not having those spiced tuna rolls or tuna in your salads, you’re playing a role in conservation while keeping yourself healthier. Here’s why it’s good not to eat tuna.
- Tuna Numbers are Shockingly Low
Since the 1970s, tuna numbers have dropped by almost 75 percent! One of the biggest reasons for this is overfishing. According to PETA, it’s a myth to think that tuna swim into nets and get caught gently. Often, they are chased so that they huddle into a group, then are caught in a net, dragged against rocks and sometimes the tuna fish die from suffocating in the nets. As for larger tuna, they get impaled on barbed hooks.
After being caught, the fish are placed on ice where they freeze to death. Sometimes they are beaten to death.
- The Concern Over Mercury
Fish such as tuna contain high levels of mercury due to how they consume contaminated fish. Mercury can be detrimental for the nervous system, affecting muscles, vision and memory. Recently, stock of chilled tuna from Japan was found with levels of mercury much higher than the legal limit. The legal limit is 0.5ppm (parts per million) - this tuna had a level of 0.92ppm!
- Tuna is Sometimes Not Really Tuna
What sometimes gets marketed as 'white tuna' is actually escolar. This is a type of fish that might sound exotic, but it can have nasty side-effects such as digestive problems, nausea, vomiting, headaches, stomach pains, and the release of an oily orange or yellow substance from the rectal passage. Gross!
- Fishing for Tuna Harms Other Sea Animals
It’s not only tuna that get caught in nets or killed by hooks - other animals in the ocean also fall victim to these, such as turtles, dolphins, seabirds and sharks. By fishing tuna, this puts other ocean inhabitants at risk.
*Image courtesy Flickr Creative Commons