Pescatarian diet may not be very healthy

Overfishing is an ever-increasing danger that threatens the whole oceanic ecosystem, and therefore mankind, and needs remedial action (Levels of global fish consumption unsustainable: UN; July 10).

Modern commercial fishing practices like trawling or long-line fishing are incredibly efficient but come along with the collateral damage of catching endangered species, destruction of corals and pollution.

That aside, pescatarians, people who do not eat meat but do consume fish, should be alerted to the fact that eating fish is not as salutary to health as many think.

Deep sea fishes up the food chain contain levels of mercury and chemical contaminants from plastics and industrial waste, while inshore smaller fishes are constantly exposed to the pesticides and herbicides washed into the sea from agricultural practices.

Deep frying and grilling fish also probably cause them to be more carcinogenic than red meat steamed, stewed or boiled, thereby counteracting whatever benefits their other nutrients bring too.

Fish farming is an effective way to increase fish yield, but the meat bounty is always lower by several times the energy levels needed to allow the fish to grow.

Fish farms are also extremely pollutive to the environment.

With a world running out of meat resources and thus resulting in higher prices, the way forward is to adopt a predominantly vegetarian diet.

It is cheaper and far less likely to generate cancers, atherosclerosis and a host of diseases than a carnivorous diet.

Yik Keng Yeong (Dr)