Industry News

Is Eating Tilapia Healthy? by Dr. Rafael Guerrero III

Tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) is the second most important farmed fish in the Philippines next to milkfish or “bangus.” Our country produces over 250,000 metric tons of tilapia from culture in freshwater ponds and lake cages every year. Per capita consumption of tilapia among Filipinos is 3 kg/yr compared to 2.5 kg/yr for milkfish and 1.6 kg/yr for roundscad or “galunggong.”

There are unfavorable reports in the United States media that tilapia is not healthy to eat. It is claimed that the fish has “poor nutritive quality” because it contains higher amounts of omega-6 fatty acids that increases “bad cholesterol” which is a risk factor for heart disease than omega-3 fatty acids that increases “good cholesterol.” It is also been said that farmed tilapia has antibiotics and mercury in its flesh.

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