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Fish nutrition, potential health benefits and heavy metal research in India: Steps towards new horizon

Author Affiliations

  • 1Jamai Osmania-PO, Food Chemistry Division, National Institute of Nutrition (ICMR), Hyderabad-500007, India

Int. Res. J. Biological Sci., Volume 6, Issue (6), Pages 52-60, June,10 (2017)


Aquaculture production is increasing in recent years and predicted that it may contribute the sea food as per the increasing population demand globally in future. Among the aquaculture provisions, fish and shellfish are one of the major sources of essential nutrients for the growth and functioning of cell and have been widely accepted for the maintenance of a healthy body. However many notorious issues are needed to consider in this field includes metal toxicity, food safety and human health pertaining to fish and shell fish nutrition. These issues require evaluating in order to attain balance in safe and nutritious food production and sustainability in aquaculture. Fish production in India was increased more than tenfold since its independence in 1947. The production of fish from 1990 to 2010 has been increased two folds according to Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. Literature show that it is well known fact that fish and shell fish were extensively accepted as a good source of nutrients for the defense of a healthy body and major source of animal protein. It is also reported to diminish the risk of heart diseases, stroke and preterm delivery due to widely consumed in many parts of the world as a good source of omega 3 fatty acids. It is unfortunate that human beings without realizing the consequences of pollution do a lot of activities that terribly polluting the nature, resulting in deterioration of the healthy environment meant for future generations. Water contamination is one of the severe concerns that influence the marine ecosystem with high concentration of heavy metals and trace metals. According to Jingaram study the coastal or river water are contaminated by the dumping of industrial wastages. The metals accumulated in the water transmit a disease to the human by consuming the affected organisms like fish and shell fish claim that when the level of trace and heavy metal concentrations exceeds the stipulated level it turns out to be toxic. Very recently the Mc Lintock work was stated that the elevated level of metal concentration may bring shattering effect to the ecological balance by altering the range of organisms in water. The other end nutrition studies show that fish consumption has a positive impact on sleep in general and also on daily functioning which may be related to vitamin D status. Extensive literature explored that there is a gap of knowledge in the appropriate toxicity and contamination studies and survey on human through fish and seafood. More research focus is needed on metal toxicity and the knowledge to combat these challenges among the clinicians, dietitians and food researchers. Further efforts should make to widen the knowledge in this unmapped area of research.


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