Coalition of Drs. Reassure Consumers About Tilapia

Letter from experts takes aim at sloppy suggestion that tilapia is


Jul 17, 2008, 01:00 ET from National Fisheries Institute

    WASHINGTON, July 17 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In response to confusing
 reports, an international coalition of more than a dozen doctors spoke out*
 today to clarify that fish like tilapia are low in total and saturated fat,
 high in protein and clearly part of a healthy diet.
     A report from Wake Forest University in the July issue of the Journal
 of the American Dietetic Association about the types of fats in popular
 seafood has led to reports that bacon, hamburgers, and doughnuts are a
 better choice than certain fish.
     The 16 dietary fats experts, led by Dr. William Harris of the Sanford
 School of Medicine, write, "Replacing tilapia or catfish with 'bacon,
 hamburgers or doughnuts' is absolutely not recommended.'"
     In explaining the specifics of the omega-3 versus omega-6 debate, the
 researchers note that omega-6s are not only found in fish like tilapia, but
 vegetable oils, nuts, whole-wheat bread and chicken. They go on to
 highlight the fact that the American Heart Association and the American
 Dietetic Association agree that, "omega-6 fatty acids are, like omega-3s,
 heart-healthy nutrients which should be part of everyone's diet."
     The coalition, including one expert from Wake Forest University, says
 unequivocally that while they are not rich in omega-3 fatty acids, fish
 like catfish and tilapia, "should be considered better choices than most
 other meat alternatives."
     "In this letter we see doctors from schools in England, Germany, Korea
 and Australia teaming up with researchers from US institutions including
 Sanford School of Medicine, Penn State and Harvard school of Public Health
 to say wait a minute, what you are reading in the press is misleading,"
 said Jennifer Wilmes, registered dietitian with the National Fisheries
 Institute. "It's heartening to see careless, sound-bite-science being
     For more than 60 years, the National Fisheries Institute (NFI) and its
 members have provided American families with the variety of sustainable
 seafood essential to a healthy diet. For more information visit:
     * To view the text of the letter, click here:
     CONTACT: Gavin Gibbons of National Fisheries Institute,

SOURCE National Fisheries Institute