Here’s some more reasons to avoid farmed fish, particularly salmon. This information comes from an article in the May 2009 issue of BestLife magazine. I have previously described how one of the best sources of Omega 3 fatty acids is fish from cold water, particularly salmon. However, this salmon has to be wild, not farm raised. When raised on a farm, the fish do not eat the same diet as in the wild, they are often fed grains. While you will find statements that farm raised salmon is a good source of Omega 3’s, which is true, it also contains a significant amount of Omega 6’s from the food it is fed. Therefore, when we eat it, we are not doing anything to improve our Omega 3 to Omega 6 ratio which is the reason we are eating these foods. In addition, farm raised salmon (branded as Atlantic Salmon) is naturally grey in color. How come it looks pink in the store? It is injected with a pink food dye. And, that is on the label!

Here’s the new information. The salmon farms are often placed near natural outlets for the wild salmon. The farms have many bright lights which attract young wild salmon. These are eaten by the larger Atlantic farmed salmon which see them as a different species. As a result the natural populations of wild salmon are being greatly reduced and in some places disappearing entirely. With millions of salmon in a central, yet still accessible location natural predators such as eagles and whales, as well as seals and sea lions are attracted to the site. Farmers are given permits to kill the seals and sea lions, obviously negatively impacting those populations. And, with all these salmon in one place there is also an issue with waste disposal. The salmon feces mix with the uneaten food pellets to make the ocean floor uninhabitable for shrimp and other small fish. Last but not least – sea lice. Salmon farms attract sea lice which infect both the farmed and the nearby wild ones who just happen to be passing through! The farmed ones are treated with antibiotics to kill the sea lice. Guess where the traces of the antibiotics, as well as the fungicides, pesticides, and all the other chemicals used in raising the salmon and the manufacturing the pellets winds up? I think you know that answer.

In summary, not only are the farmed raised salmon not healthy for you, they are also unhealthy to the environment and to wild salmon. The wild salmon population is under threat as is your right to healthy and nourishing foods. So, when you are eating out and think you are getting something healthy when you order salmon, ask to make sure it is wild salmon, and make sure it is cooked thoroughly to avoid potential parasites.

Bernard Rosen, PhD is a Nutrition Consultant and Educator. He works with individuals, groups, and at corporations to create individualized nutrition and wellness programs. He is an expert in the field of Nutrition and Erectile Dysfunction. His office is in Thiensville, WI. To learn more or to schedule an appointment, e-mail at, call (262) 389-9907 or go to