(NaturalHealth365) There is mounting evidence that eating polluted seafood can do profound damage to the natural inner defense system of the human body. The toxins that get into fish from polluted waters are also making their way into the rest of our food supply, increasing the damage that it does to human detoxification pathways.
Healthy, unpolluted fish are an excellent source of omega 3s and other brain-boosting, heart health-promoting nutrients. However, studies are increasingly showing that a specific pollutant can get lodged into the muscle tissue of some kinds of fish and pose a particular threat to the human body’s ability to protect itself.
Environmental pollution and toxins doing even more damage than we realized
Researchers from Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego has recently found specific evidence that ingesting these pollutants interferes with the body’s ability to purge itself of toxins. The study was published in the Journal of Science Advances.
Our bodies contain a critical protein called P-gp, short for P-glycoprotein. This protein works to battle harmful toxins that would otherwise enter the body and do harm. Much like a bouncer or gatekeeper, P-gp helps to expel foreign chemicals and can even resist multiple types of toxic chemicals all at once. Without adequate and viable amounts of this protein, toxins are able to come into the cells with no boundaries.
Fish eaters need to know about “poisoning the bouncer”
The pollutants that seem to be doing the most harm are persistent organic pollutants (POPs), a class of pollutants found to have an ability to slip past the P-gp barrier and cause damage within the human body. This recent research project looked for the exact cause by analyzing 10 different pollutant types that were found to obstruct P-gp’s from functioning properly.
It was determined that instead of slipping past the P-gp’s, these pollutants actually attach to them and impact the body in a negative way. Instead of being expelled, the proteins interfere with p-glycoprotein and reduce its effectiveness. This effect has been nicknamed “poisoning the bouncer” and poses a grave health danger for fish eaters.
However, it’s not just fish being affected; high POP levels have also been found in dairy and meat products. It’s likely that affected fish carry multiple toxins that can have an exponential effect, acting as “force multipliers” that degrade cellular ability to protect the body.
Warning: Environmental pollution and toxins reaching critical mass
The most toxic fish were found in the Gulf of Mexico – which is not surprising due to major oil spills that have occurred in this area. Wild caught yellow fin tuna has also been identified as particularly toxic.
Clearly, chemicals and pollutants in our environment are having a devastating effect – worse than we even realized. Businesses, governments and industries must increase their efforts to reduce the impacts of these pollutants in the environment, in our bodies, and ultimately in the entire food chain.
How can we help? Spend those dollars wisely and only support environmentally-friendly companies and/or local farmers’ markets. (Never forget: Our purchasing dollars are quite powerful)
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