The world-wide shark fin soup fad is dying down as people learn about the danger our sharks are in of going extinct and we learn about this recent discovery that shark is toxic and thus dangerous for our bodies.
Scientists at the University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science found that there are high concentrations of BMAA in shark fins, a neurotoxin linked to human diseases including Alzheimer’s and Lou Gehrig Disease (ALS). Consumption of shark fin soup and cartilage pills that are also made from shark, is a health risk that can cause these brain diseases.(1)
These scientists from the University of Miami tested seven shark species in waters throughout South Florida. In a 2009 study, patients dying of Alzheimer’s disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis had unusually high levels of BMAA in their brains, while healthy people had only trace amounts of BMAA in their brains.(2)
It is because of the high demand for shark that millions of them continue to be killed each year to fulfill this demand for things like shark fin soup and cartilage pills.
As we push sharks to extinction, we push life to extinction. Sharks are one of our top APEX predators that keep our ocean’s ecosystem healthy and balanced. Without sharks, our oceans will die off and we cannot survive without our oceans. It covers 70% of our earth’s surface and holds the things that all life on earth need to survive such as much of our protein, oxygen, and of course, our water. We our killing off sharks at rates they cannot keep up with to meet the demand for tasteless bowls of poisonous soup and cartilage pills.
My hope is that we will see shark finning and fishing banned all over the world, not just because we are driving them to extinction and we need to keep that from happening, but because we care for our health and the health of others who could be hurt by eating shark. Shark is still served in Florida. There is a certain amount of sharks that can be brought in by commercial fishermen, so we don’t see so many sharks killed and brought in, but that still helps the dent in shark populations and we have people continuing to be put as they continue to eat shark, unaware of this discovery.
1) University of Miami report “Neurotoxins in Shark Fins: A Human Health Concern”: https://www.rsmas.miami.edu/news-events/pressreleases/2012/neurotoxins-in-shark-fins-a-human-health-concern
2) MedicineNet.com – “Toxins Afloat in Shark Fin Soup”: http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=155466