Are sea foods still good for you?
Well, based on the facts, the statement above is right: "sea foods are good for us!" but with some conditions, especially environmental issues. Perhaps you still remember about "another Minamata disease" during 2004 in North Sulawesi. Some poor people around the Buyat Bay have suffered from a range of mysterious health problems including skin diseases, tremors, headaches, and unusual swellings on the neck, calves, wrist, buttocks and head (source: WALHI).
Or maybe you have heard also that Jakarta Bay has a very serious chemical and heavy metal pollution problem. Some reseacrhers said that the water pollution in Jakarta Bay, where the sources of pollution came from domestic and industry sectors, are very high and above the standard (source: BPLHD Jakarta).
I am prety sure that you can't find a lot of same water pollution problems as above in some Indonesian waters. Oh ya, just for your information, actually the cycle of pollution is very complex. The air pollution can also generate land and water pollution. This cycle occurs when the rain wash out the pollutant from the air onto land or surface water.
What is the relationship between "water pollution" and "sea foods"? Well, to discuss about this matter you should know about the terms "food chain" and "accumulation". Yup! we had gotten a lesson about food chain when in Junior High School. Below is the illustration about it (source: seafriends.org).
Heavy metals cannot be destroyed through biological degradation. Food chain makes the higher level predators accumulate them in their body from what they ate, and human as the highest level predator will accumulate them all in their body also from what they ate. Of course, the concentration of them in the human body is the highest.
Well, this article of course not aimed to make you avoid sea foods. Sea foods are good and always good as long as we can maintain the quality of the coast and sea environment. Reducing the sources of pollutant is still the best and cheapest way so far.
Oh ya, for your information, actually this case not only valid for sea foods, but also for vegetables and fruits and everything come from the land (agriculture). One of the main problem in agriculture is pesticide. This is one of the reason why some developed countries in Asia, USA and Europe banned vegetables and fruits from Asia (Thailand, Indonesia, etc).