Tilapia is the third most consumed type of fish in America. However, it has been under fire for quite some time now as there is mounting evidence tilapia fish is grown in bad farming conditions in China.
On one hand, the fish is quite inexpensive, it can be bought boneless and skinless and is really tasty, since it does not have the familiar fish taste.
But, tilapia’s origin is linked with the real problem. Most of the tilapia fish we consume today is not wild, as it should be but farm-bred. Today, it is nearly impossible to come across wild tilapia in the markets. Even, restaurants mostly serve farm-bred tilapia. In fact, the scale farming is so large that thousands of types of fish are being harvested each day.
The problem is that wild tilapia feeds itself with algae and lake plants, while farm-bred tilapia is being fed with GMO corn and soy pellets. Healthy fish oil from wild tilapia is lacking in the farm-bred ones. Actually, farm-raised tilapia fish does not possess health benefits because of several reasons.
Why Farm-Bred Tilapia is Bad for Your Health
Recent studies have confirmed that consuming farm-bred tilapia may lead to inflammation. In fact, consuming tilapia might worsen already existing inflammation that is being caused by a number of health issues including heart disease, arthritis and asthma. People often believe they are getting their omega-3 fatty acid by consuming the fish oil consisted in tilapia and they will reduce the risk of heart attacks. However, the real truth is that this fish presents a much more serious risk health factor, when it comes to inflammation, than hamburgers or bacon.
. Cancer Causing Pollutants
Farmed-raised tilapia is generally 10 times more exposed to numerous cancerous organic pollutants compared to wild tilapia. Anyway, one of the main ingredients found in the feed is chicken poop. Pig and duck waste being processed into the fish food is also pretty common.
. Higher Pesticides and Antibiotics
Farm-bred tilapia is generally packed with higher content of antibiotics and pesticides. This can basically come down as a fact that farm-bred fish are living in a crowd and due to it they are more susceptible to diseases. That is why they are often given antibiotics in order to keep them healthy. Pesticides are part of their diet so it can kill sea lice. Actually, these pesticides are so strong that they can kill wild salmon if being exposed to them accidentally. All this is not because the pesticides, which produce toxic effects on various other marine lives when ingested, are being released into the sea.
. Low Omega-6 to Omega-3 Ratios
Farm-raised tilapia is packed with less healthy nutrients compared to the wild one. One thing is that the omega-3 fatty acids found in farm-bred tilapia are not nearly as beneficial for us as the omega fatty acids found in the wild tilapia. Plus, the farm-raised one also contains much less protein. The farm-bred fish are raised in pools and this makes them fattier. Also, they are often containing more omega 6 fatty acids. If one over-consumes omega 6 fatty acids he will become more prone to inflammation. Omega 6 to omega 3 ratios in farm-bred tilapia is misbalanced, which negatively impacts our bodies.
. High Dioxin Levels
Last, but certainly not least, farm-bred tilapia fish also contains higher levels of dioxin. Such bred tilapia is actually packed with 11 times more dioxins compared to wild tilapia. Dioxins are not just toxic, they can also affect your body and sometimes can even trigger development of cancer. The worst thing about dioxins is that if it gets into the body you will need around 7 to 11 years just to remove half of the amount you have entered in your organism.
All in all, it is highly important to know that farm-bred tilapia is very deficient when it comes to providing the vital nutrients your body needs. Instead of consuming farm-bred tilapia, you should opt for some healthier type of fish or wild tilapia.