Weight Loss
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Tuna for weight loss?


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When I first started my lifestyle change I ate tuna twice a day (canned-light-drained) and I lost a lot of weight that way and I thought that since it was fish it was ok to eat in large amounts. Then I stopped eating tuna for a while and I had extremely slow weight loss and then I switched to eating those bumblebee tuna medley things twice a day until I searched for it on calorie count and saw the sodium content! Now I have almost completely cut out tuna from my diet and I have found that I am not losing as much weight (for obvious reasons) and worse that I am more prone to stray from my calorie allowance and eat very unhealthy foods. When I was eating tuna daily  I never strayed from my calorie allowance and I was much more committed to my new lifestyle. I went to the market this weekend and bought some more tuna because not only do I actually really like the taste of tuna, but I need to get back on track and stop going back to my old habits (I still plan to keep on eating lots of fruits and veggies and most of the things that I was eating up until now, though).  I just wanted to know what are your experiences with tuna for weight loss and if its ok to eat it on a daily basis.

Your thoughts??

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I read around a bit and found a variety of advice on how much tuna you should eat because of concerns about mercury poisoning. The NRDC has some fairly cut and dried recommendations based on body weight.

The FDA recommendations (which are the same as the EPA recommendations) are perhaps a bit less extreme, but regardless, they also recommend not eating as much as you're wanting to eat:

Eat up to 12 ounces (2 average meals) a week of a variety of fish and shellfish that are lower in mercury.

  • Five of the most commonly eaten fish that are low in mercury are shrimp, canned light tuna, salmon, pollock, and catfish.
  • Another commonly eaten fish, albacore ("white") tuna has more mercury than canned light tuna. So, when choosing your two meals of fish and shellfish, you may eat up to 6 ounces (one average meal) of albacore tuna per week.

I love tuna and was sad to realize that I shouldn't eat as much as I like. Now I have it a couple of times a month and even then it's a guilty pleasure.

tl;dr: Forget concerns about sodium, do not eat tuna every day for weight loss because of the mercury risks.

I always thought that tuna was very good for diets :( .. like I would eat tuna for lunch with onion salad...

Tuna twice a day every day is a lot and boring, which for me leads to diet disaster. 

Two reasons tuna may be your 'magic food'.  One its very high in protein and eating more protein keeps you full longer.  You might want to try some other high protein / low cal options to keep your diet varied.

http://lowcarbdiets.about.com/od/whattoeat/a/ highproteinfood.htm

The other reason is I believe most of us have foods that trigger us to be healthy just like comfort foods are comforting.  For me its my salad at lunch 150g spinach, 50g feta cheese, 113g tabouli.  Its been my 'magic meal' every time I have had weight loss success and now its almost like a superstition, if I don't eat the salad my day will not be a successful day. If tuna is just your 'magic food' you might want to cut how much you eat at each meal in half or even quarter, that way you still get the psychological benefits of the taste and smell and you get to vary your foods.

I too am aware of the mercury content and risks associated with tuna but I love it! I eat it many MANY times a week and though I didn't know about the possible 'weight loss' bonus, I am still going to eat a lot of it. There are certain brands/varieties which may be healthier than others so just try to stick to those....I actually crave tuna sometimes; glad to know I'm not the only one! Embarassed

I've never understood what is so bad about sodium.  Just make sure you have healthy cholesterol levels and wash it away with water right?  I eat a lot of salt and have a very healthy heart.

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The thing is though, most people don't drink enough water to counterbalance all the sodium. But I agree, I don't drink a lot of water on a regular basis but when I know I've consumed a lot of sodium I drink tons and I don't see anything wrong with that C:

I have low blood pressure, so my doc actually told me to eat more sodium than normal! And with tuna, I honestly don't care how much mercury is in it! I'll eat it til i croak! With a bit of miracle whip light. Nummy!

A lot of people have heavy metal poisoning, possibly half the population. Mercury is a huge problem because it stays in your blood for a really long time causing all kinds of health problems. Mercury has a half life of 6 months I believe, so every 6 months you will decrease the amount in your body by 50%. Canned tuna is a big source of mercury poisoning. At the very least eat real tuna, not canned. In general everything in a can is processed (salt is used to preserve the item to extend shelf life), so a better choice would be frozen. 

I eat a lot of tuna and I am not too concerned about the associated risks.The reason? my father is a General Practitioner and had a patient who was concerned about mercury poisening, after eating two cans of tuna a day for years. He had this tested (not sure how they do it) and his levels were totally fine!I know that this eg. is only one. However, I think I will continue eating tuna on a regular basis.

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