Sushi at 20 New York City restaurants tested positive for unacceptable levels of mercury and might pose a health risk, and experts say the problem likely exists elsewhere, The New York Times reported on Wednesday.
According to the story, consuming just six pieces of sushi per week would exceed the standard levels set by the Environmental Protection Agency.
"No one should eat a meal of tuna with mercury levels like those found in the restaurant samples more than about once every three weeks," Michael Gochfeld, professor of environmental and occupational medicine at the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in Piscataway, N.J., told The Times.
And though the samples, many of which the restaurants said were of the bluefin tuna variety, were taken from Manhattan eateries, experts say the mercury risk likely goes beyond the borough.
According to Environmental Defense scientist Tim Fitzgerald, "Mercury levels in bluefin are likely to be very high regardless of location."
Recent studies claim mercury may cause health problems for adults, including an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and neurological symptoms.