Mercury Awareness Week: Get Tested
Tip #4: Get tested for mercury.
Mercury, a potent neurotoxin, can affect anyone. But it’s a particular threat to babies and pregnant women, since it can cause birth defects, developmental problems, learning disabilities, even premature death. In the U.S., at least one woman in 12 has enough of this heavy metal in her body to hurt a fetus — which means that more than 300,000 babies born each year are at risk of mercury poisoning. The good news for women: You can lower your body's mercury level before you get pregnant. If you’re of childbearing age, take a hair test, a urine test, or ask your doctor for a blood test (though some dispute blood tests’ accuracy for mercury). If your levels are high, reevaluate the kinds of seafood you’re eating.
Tell us: Do you plan to get tested for mercury?