Fish from Stores and Restaurants

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates the sale of commercial fish in markets. Due to concerns about mercury, the FDA and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) provide advice to pregnant women, women who may become pregnant, and young children about three categories of fish: "Best Choices", "Good Choices", and "Choices to Avoid". The seven fish in the "Choices to Avoid" category are shark, swordfish, king mackerel, tuna (bigeye), marlin, orange roughy and tilefish.

As part of a healthy diet, FDA/EPA recommends that women who are pregnant, may become pregnant and nursing mothers eat two to three servings (4 ounces each) of fish from their list of "Best Choices" or one serving per week of fish from their list of "Good Choices", and that young children should be served one to two servings of smaller portion sizes per week.

The full FDA/EPA advisory, downloadable PDF of the chart below, and answers to frequently asked questions about mercury in fish and shellfish, can be found at and

Describes which fish are good choices and which fish pregnant and breast feeding women should avoid.

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