Farmed Fish vs. Wild Caught Fish

By, Ariel Abolitz

The fish you are eating as part of your “healthy” meal, may actually be damaging your body, depending on the source. Have you wondered where the fish actually comes from? Many of you are probably imagining a fish spending its life happily swimming through the ocean unimpeded by nets or worries swimming with a school of other fish.

While that may be true if you are eating wild caught fish, this is definitely not the case for farmed fish, which currently makes up the majority of fish sold in the United States. Farmed fish are raised to become food in the cheapest way possible and are contained in human made enclosures. These fish are kept from their natural lifestyle. Instead of spending their life exploring the sea, they wait day in and day out for the next feeding. And what might that fish food contain? On Pure-Zing, a website dedicated to healthy living, the author states that these days the most common food fed to farmed fish is an unnatural mixture of soy, corn, scraps of smaller fish, and sometimes even chicken feces.

This diet contributes to the incredible amount of toxins found in these farmed fish. According to That-Organic-Girl, farmed fish are eight times more likely to contain harmful levels of poly-chlorinated biphenyl (PCB), or other highly dangerous toxins. Eating Rules, a healthy eating blog, explains that many chemicals are fed to farm raised fish. At a salmon farm some of the chemicals included: Ivermectin, emamectin benzoate, oxytetracycline, and ten other harmful chemicals, which include embalming chemicals. Would you willingly eat any of these suspicious substances?

These chemicals pass as food for the fish you eat, yet they do not appear on any ingredient label. This type of environment also breeds disease in the cages. That-Organic-Girl elaborates, claiming that since fish are prone to developing infection, the farmers respond by pumping the fish with antibiotics. Eventually these antibiotics will unnecessarily end up in your body, if you eat these fish. In contrast,  wild caught fish contain more Omega-3 fatty acids, which is a heart healthy fat and one of the main reasons fish is considered a healthy addition to anyone’s diet. Wild caught fish are nutritionally more enriching and of course they do not come with the toxins that farmed fish are bound to bring with them. Next time you decide to buy fish, try checking the label and opting for the wild caught option. This type of fish is better for you, and a more natural choice.

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