What’s Wrong With Me?

How to Avoid too Much Mercury

spicy tuna roll

Spicy Tuna I’ll Miss You

I am a chronic migraine sufferer, so when I had a migraine Friday night an hour after dinner I didn’t think much of it.  My stomach felt a little upset, and my boyfriend wasn’t feeling too great either.  We had just had sushi at Katsuya, and we wondered, “Did we get food poisoning?”  Sushi is tricky, and we all know how easy it is for sushi to go bad, but Katsuya is supposed to be a quality establishment is it not?

When I got home I took an excedrine for my migraine, as I often do and fell asleep.  I had anxiety the next day as well, and another headache.  It’s now going on the fifth day, and I still have a headache, some anxiety, and nausea.  I did research, and discovered I have mercury poisoning.

I have heard of mercury poisoning before, and heard that mercury exists in seafood, but never heard of the effects it can have on your brain.  I figured I would be throwing up, or have symptoms similar to food poisoning.  Never did I imagine it would cause headaches, anxiety, etc.

While I love seafood, the lesson in all of this is to be aware of the amount of mercury you digest.  Mercury searches for fat to intrude.  Since our brains our comprised of fatty tissue, the mercury finds it’s way into our brains affecting our thoughts and emotions.  If you feel like you have mercury poisoning, consult your doctor.

Here is a list of fish and their mercury levels according to about.com:


Eat 2-3 servings a week (pregnant women and small children should not eat more than 12 ounces (2 servings):

  • Anchovies
  • Catfish
  • Clam
  • Crab
  • Crawfish
  • Flounder
  • Haddock
  • Herring
  • Mackerel
  • Mullet
  • Oyster
  • Perch
  • Pollock
  • Salmon
  • Sardine
  • Scallop
  • Shrimp
  • Sole
  • Squid
  • Tilapia
  • Trout
  • Whitefish


Eat six servings or fewer per month (pregnant women and small children should avoid these):

  • Bass
  • Carp
  • Cod
  • Halibut
  • Lobster
  • Mahi Mahi
  • Monkfish
  • Perch
  • Snapper
  • Tuna (Canned Chunk light)


Eat three servings or less per month (pregnant women and small children should avoid these):

  • Bluefish
  • Grouper
  • Sea Bass
  • Tuna (Canned Albacore, Yellowfin)


Avoid eating (everyone):

  • Marlin
  • Orange Roughy
  • Shark
  • Swordfish
  • Tilefish
  • Tuna (Ahi)

It’s important to remember that seafood is a healthy alternative to red meat.  There are plenty of nutritional benefits to eating seafood, just remember to eat fish with low levels of mercury.