Whale eaters have more mercury | world | Hindustan Times
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Whale eaters have more mercury

Residents of a whaling town in Japan have been found to have concentrations of methylmercury in their hair four times or more than the average of 14 other regions in the country where cetaceans are rarely consumed, the town office based on a survey said.

world Updated: May 11, 2010 02:14 IST
Hindustan Times

Residents of a whaling town in Japan have been found to have concentrations of methylmercury in their hair four times or more than the average of 14 other regions in the country where cetaceans are rarely consumed, the town office based on a survey said.

Men in Taiji in Wakayama Prefecture, where whale meat has been eaten traditionally, had concentrations of around 4.5 times the average while the level in women was about 4 times higher, the town office and the National Institute for Minamata Disease in Kumamoto Prefecture said.

The finding was based on a survey last summer using hair samples from 1,017 residents of Taiji, which were tested for methylmercury concentration. No health effects from the high concentrations were detected.