I was in my office getting ready to join my staff for a meeting when I overheard it…
“One of Norway’s top scientists calls farmed salmon the most toxic food in the world.”
I immediately asked to see the study.
As a regular reader, you know I always recommend wild-caught fish. But what I read in this report surprised even me.
As it turns out, farmed salmon is five times more toxic than every other food the researchers tested.1
You know that I’ve warned my patients against eating farm-raised animals for decades. Whether beef, fish, or eggs, these Big Agra mass-produced foods harm your health.
I’ve been exposing Big Agra’s tactics for years. They’re not concerned with what’s healthy for us… only with grabbing the biggest profits.
But I didn’t realize the extent of the dangers of farmed salmon. So I’m here today to break the long-held myth that farmed salmon is a “health food.”
One of the big reasons salmon has such a reputation as a healthy food is because of its high-fat content. Wild salmon contains about 5% to 7% of healthy fat.
Farmed salmon has anywhere from 15% to 34% fat. Unfortunately, it’s the unhealthy kind.
Let me explain…
For decades, I’ve been telling you that fat is not the enemy — that you evolved to eat it, and it’s an integral part of good health.
But the fat in farm-raised fish has a dark side. And when you eat it, you end up with the same amount of “bad fats” as a fast-food meal or bag of chips.
I’m talking about omega-6s. And instead of being good for your heart and brain, they’re flooding your body with inflammation.
Don’t get me wrong. You need both omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids – in the ideal ratio of 2:1.
The omega-6 to omega-3 ratio in farm-raised salmon is way out of whack.
Consider these numbers: A serving of wild salmon has 4,000 mg of omega-3 and about 340 mg of omega-6.
But a serving of farmed salmon sends those figures sky-high — with almost 2,000 mg of omega-6.2
Those high levels of omega-6s are a direct cause of inflammation.
And this dangerous inflammation in your body is the main culprit behind almost every chronic disease we face today, from cancer and heart disease to arthritis, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s.
So what makes farm-raised salmon so low in healthy omega-3s and high in omega-6s? A big reason is the corn diet the fish are fed. Most wild salmon eat either greens or other fish that eat greens. This is what supplies them with omega-3s.
Corn, however, is loaded with omega-6s. When the fish eat the corn, they convert the omega-6s into arachidonic acid, the main cause of dangerous inflammation. But corn is just one of the unnatural ingredients in a farmed salmon’s diet…
Fish grown in man-made ponds are also fed processed fish feed. Now, wild salmon are natural carnivores and feed on smaller fish.
But these factory-produced pellets are made from a disgusting list of ingredients, including ground-up chicken feathers, poultry feces, genetically modified yeast, soybeans, and chicken fat.3
Get schooled… Learn how to pick the best fish
Here’s what I recommend for buying the very best salmon you can:
- Always choose Alaskan salmon (and don’t confuse it with Atlantic salmon). Alaskan salmon is not allowed to be farmed. But most farmed salmon available in the U.S. is sold under the name Atlantic salmon. It’s a marketing ploy designed to trick you into thinking you’re getting wild fish.
- Be vigilant. Almost half of the “wild-caught” salmon sold is secretly farmed. In a report from the conservation group Oceana, researchers collected 82 samples of salmon labeled “wild” from restaurants and grocery stores. Using DNA analysis, they checked to see if the fish was what it claimed to be. They found that 43% of the salmon was labeled incorrectly.
- Buy your salmon in season. In the same way that fresh produce has a season, there’s a right time to buy fresh salmon. Shopping for salmon when it’s in season — typically April through September — makes you less likely to get duped. According to Oceana, buying in season can drop the rate of “mislabeling” down to just 7%.
- If you can’t find it in person, order it online. If you don’t have access to fresh, wild-caught fish, look for it on the Internet. I often order mine online from Grassland Beef (www.grasslandbeef.com) or Wild Alaska Seafood (www.wildalaskaseafood.com). It comes right to your door, fresh, packed in dry ice.
To Your Good Health,
Al Sears, MD, CNS
1. Bolann B, et al. “Are environmental pollutants in the Norwegian diet harmful to children?” Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen. 2017 Feb 21;137(4):295-297.
3. Reilly L. “The facts about farmed salmon you wish you didn’t know.” http:// www.tampabay.com/. Accessed December 7, 2022.