Detox Shape-up Tip – Canned Tuna

Tip #36

Canned Tuna (Health Canada)

Canned tuna, especially canned light tuna, is one of the most popular types of fish for many Canadians. The fish used in canned tuna products are generally younger and smaller and have significantly less mercury than fresh or frozen tuna, so that most Canadians don’t need to be concerned about consuming canned tuna.

However, for those who consume large amounts of canned albacore tuna, there is some potential for exposure to higher levels of mercury than is considered acceptable.

Because of this, Health Canada has issued advice for children and some women on the consumption of canned albacore tuna. The advice does not apply to canned light tuna, nor does it apply to Canadians outside of the specified groups.

Canned albacore tuna is also often called canned white tuna, but it is not the same as canned light tuna. Canned light tuna contains other species of tuna such as skipjack, yellowfin, and tongol, which are relatively low in mercury. Canned light tuna also tends to be lower in cost relative to albacore tuna.

Canned Albacore (White) Tuna Advice (does not apply to canned light tuna)

Specified Women – 300 grams a week (4 Food Guide servings)
Children 5-11 years old – 150 grams a week (2 Food Guide servings)
Children 1-4 years old – 75 grams a week (1 Food Guide serving)
* Specified women are those who are or may become pregnant or are breastfeeding.

One Food Guide Serving is 75g, 2 ½ oz, 125 mL, or ½ cup and is equal to about half of a 170-g can (a very common can size).

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