Nutritional and toxicological aspects of seafood consumption-An integrated exposure and risk assessment of methylmercury and polyunsaturated fatty acids

Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Box 210, SE-171 77 Stockholm, Sweden.
Environmental Research (Impact Factor: 4.37). 02/2011; 111(2):274-80. DOI: 10.1016/j.envres.2010.12.003
Source: PubMed


Seafood consumption is associated with both risks and beneficial effects to human health. Consequently, an integrated exposure assessment of intake of toxic and nutritious agents in seafood is of importance prior to determination of dietary advisories. We have developed a probabilistic model for the estimation of simultaneous intake of methylmercury (MeHg) and long-chain n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-n3 PUFAs) from seafood, to estimate the population proportion at risk for exceeding tolerable MeHg intake and not reaching adequate intake of PUFAs. Seafood consumption data was collected among women of childbearing age using a food frequency questionnaire. A database of mercury and fatty acids concentration in seafood was constructed. A Latin Hypercube simulation was used to calculate the intake of MeHg and LC n-3 PUFAs. Eleven percent of the population exceeded the MeHg reference dose of 0.1 μg/kg bw/day, whereas only 44% reached an adequate PUFA intake. A small proportion (3.7%) exceeded the MeHg reference dose while at the same time did not reach an adequate PUFA intake. Furthermore, we simulated two scenarios in which seafood is consumed according to a general recommendation of three servings per week, whereof one serving of oily seafood. The first scenario included seafood with typically low MeHg concentrations (mean 0.056 and 0.027 μg MeHg/g fish in lean and oily species, respectively), and the second included seafood typically high in MeHg concentrations (mean 0.50 and 0.26 μg MeHg/g fish in lean and oily species, respectively). In the "high"scenario, almost 100% of the population exceeded the reference dose, whereas the corresponding proportion was only 5% in the "low" scenario. Overall, the results stress the importance of communicating species specific seafood consumption advisories for women of childbearing age in general and for pregnant women in particular, while at the same time encourage them to consume more seafood.

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    • "Fish are the sole source of MeHg exposure, and this presents a significant public health dilemma because of the well-known nutritional benefits of fish consumption (Oken et al., 2012; Ström et al., 2011). There is an extensive literature comparing adverse effects of MeHg with nutritional benefits, and the common conclusion is that large, long-lived predatory fish should be avoided (Mahaffey et al., 2011; Oken et al., 2012; Ström et al., 2011). Many of citations here represent studies of human populations, some of heavy fish consumers explicitly and others of broader populations. "
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    ABSTRACT: Events that disrupt the early development of the nervous system have lifelong, irreversible behavioral consequences. The environmental contaminant, methylmercury (MeHg), impairs neural development with effects that are manifested well into adulthood and even into aging. Noting the sensitivity of the developing brain to MeHg, the current review advances an argument that one outcome of early MeHg exposure is a distortion in the processing of reinforcing consequences that results in impaired choice, poor inhibition of prepotent responding, and perseveration on discrimination reversals (in the absence of alteration of extradimensional shifts). Neurochemical correlates include increased sensitivity to dopamine agonists and decreased sensitivity to gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) agonists. This leads to a hypothesis that the prefrontal cortex or dopamine neurotransmission is especially sensitive to even subtle gestational MeHg exposure and suggests that public health assessments of MeHg based on intellectual performance may underestimate the impact of MeHg in public health. Finally, those interested in modeling neural development may benefit from MeHg as an experimental model. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.
    Behavioural processes 03/2015; 114(1). DOI:10.1016/j.beproc.2015.03.007 · 1.57 Impact Factor
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    • "Marine resources have been traded more than any other food commodity and represent one of the most nutritious and healthy foods, with high quality animal protein and a low fat content [4] [5]. Fish is widely reported as an important source of essential amino acids, long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, and trace elements [6]. It contributes with at least 15% of worldwide animal protein consumed and up to 50% in some coastal states [7] [8]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Portugal has the third highest seafood consumption per capita in the world and current patterns of seafood consumption are linked to how seafood products were embodied in the Portuguese society. The objective of this research is to understand Portuguese seafood consumption's main drivers and its consequences. For that official statistics were analyzed and a literature review on seafood consumption was undertaken. Portuguese seafood consumption is characterized by a wide diversity of species and preparing modes, when compared to other countries in Europe. Cod (salted and dried), does not exist in Portuguese waters but due to several factors, such as politics, religion and tradition, became the main species in Portuguese seafood consumption, representing around 38% of the national seafood demand. Five drivers are suggested to explain why Portuguese eat so much seafood: geography, marine resources, fisheries, social forces and politics; and consequences for the environment, economy and health are discussed. Hence while most dietary recommendations advise an increase in fish consumption is not applicable to Portugal and a more sustainable seafood consumption for the future is advocated.
    Marine Policy 01/2015; 61:87-94. DOI:10.1016/j.marpol.2015.07.012 · 2.62 Impact Factor
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    • "Analysing the factors limiting such consumption – e.g. prices, availability, preferences, etc. (Olsen, 2004), – as well as the nutritional-toxicological conflict associated with seafood intake (Sioen et al., 2009, 2008; Ström et al., 2011) and the particular characteristics of the anchoveta exploitation (Fréon et al., 2013), exceeds the scope of this study. We rather focus on the sustainability assessment of those anchoveta and aquaculture products, to inform on their relative sustainability performance and assist in providing information for future popularisation or policy/management measures involving these products. "
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    ABSTRACT: Different seafood products based on Peruvian anchoveta (Engraulis ringens) fisheries and freshwater aquaculture of trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss), tilapia (Oreochromis spp.) and black pacu (Colossoma macropomum), contribute at different scales to the socio-economic development, environmental degradation and nutrition of the Peruvian population. Various indicators have been used in the literature to assess the performance of these industries regarding different aspects of sustainability, notably their socio-economic performance. In this study, a novel set of indicators is proposed to evaluate the sustainability performance of these industries in Peru, based on life cycle assessment (LCA) and nutritional profiling, as well as on energy and socio-economic assessment approaches. The emphasis is put on the potential of different products to contribute to improving the nutrition of the Peruvian population in an energy-efficient, environmentally friendly and socio-economically sound way. The set of indicators includes biotic resource use (BRU), cumulative energy demand (CED), energy return on investment (EROI), production costs, gross profit generation, added value, and nutritional profile in terms of vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids; as well as a number of life cycle impact assessment indicators commonly used in seafood studies, and some recently proposed indicators of resource status (measuring the impacts of fish biomass removal at the species and ecosystem levels). Results suggest that more energy-intensive/highly processed products (cured and canned anchoveta products) represent a higher burden, in terms of environmental impact, than less energy-intensive products (salted and frozen anchoveta products, semi-intensive aquaculture products). This result is confirmed when comparing all products regarding their industrial-to-nutritional energy ratio. Regarding the other attributes analysed, the scoring shows that salted and frozen anchoveta products generate fewer jobs and lower gross profit than canned and cured, while aquaculture products maximise them. Overall, it was concluded that less energy-intensive industries (anchoveta freezing and salting) are the least environmentally impacting but also the least economically interesting products, yet delivering higher nutritional value. Aquaculture products maximise gross profit and job creation, with lower energy efficiency and nutritional values. The proposed set of sustainability indicators fulfilled its goal in providing a multi-criteria assessment of anchoveta direct human consumption and freshwater aquaculture products. As often the case, there is no ideal product and the best trade-off must be sought when making decision regarding fisheries and seafood policy. No threshold for performance of the different indicators is offered, because the goal of the comparison is to contrast the relative performance among products, not of products against reference values.
    Ecological Indicators 09/2014; 48:518-532. DOI:10.1016/j.ecolind.2014.09.006 · 3.44 Impact Factor
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