Ocean pollution is a serious issue – an issue much larger than the one or two oil spills year that briefly capture public attention. Manufacturing and other international processes deposit literally thousands of chemicals in our planet’s oceans, harming millions of aquatic animals yearly.
This is not a third-world issue; it happens right here in America.
Wild salmon pulled from Puget Sound in Seattle are testing positive for Prozac, Advil, Benadryl, Lipitor, nicotine, Valium, Zoloft, OxyContin, cocaine and many more drugs. Seriously, I mean many more; researchers say the salmon contains a ‘cocktail’ of 81 drugs.
Alarmingly, researchers also found that even the supposedly ‘clean’ areas of water in Seattle had higher levels of contamination than many of the nation’s wastewater treatment plants.
Why Is This Happening?
According to Jim Meador, an environmental toxicologist from Seattle, all of this could be due to the city’s high drug abuse rates. It could also be the result of poor sanitation at Seattle wastewater treatment plants.
Either way, Meador says, the drug concentration in Seattle water – and consequently, salmon – is much higher than researchers expected.
Salmon passing through Puget Sound are twice as likely to die as fish elsewhere.
Alarming, right? Equally alarming is the fact that we have little to no idea how much of an impact these chemicals in fish have on human beings who consume them. Of course, health officials jump on this and insist that there’s no evidence of potential danger for humans. They’re not lying, per se – there is no evidence, but that’s largely because people haven’t really looked for it.
I think it’s fairly safe to assume that if fish are twice as likely to die from exposure to these chemicals, they can’t be all that good for humans – especially since even trace levels of chemicals for a long enough time period can result in significant DNA damage.
Bigger Than Seattle
A few of you might be thinking:
“Phew, I’m sure glad I live in [insert location that is not Seattle here].”
To that, I say look – although Seattle’s salmon drug contamination rates are among the nation’s worst, that doesn’t mean the rest of the country is home free. You see, drugs are just one of the many concerns as far as ocean contamination goes. We’ve also got to worry about nuclear fallout, for example.
The truth is that if you want to reap the many benefits of salmon, you will find yourself ingesting toxins, even if you buy wild (and you should buy wild). You need to make sure you’re detoxing as often as possible to reduce the amount of toxins that build up in your body. Read more about detoxing here!
Do you eat lots of salmon? What do you do to make sure your body stays free of toxins? Let us know in the comments below!