Canned tuna is a good way to get lean protein, omega-3 fats, selenium, vitamin D, B vitamins and other nutrients. But there are lingering concerns—notably about mercury. Here’s what you need to know.
What’s a serving of tuna and how many calories does it have?
According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), it’s three ounces, the same as for meat. That’s a fairly small portion, but labels typically list an even smaller serving size—just two ounces. Depending on the type and how it’s packed (water versus oil), tuna has anywhere from 90 to 180 calories in three ounces. Tuna in jars and pouches may have different serving sizes.
What kinds of tuna are canned?
White tuna is albacore; it has the lightest-colored flesh of all tuna species, but it’s actually still more pink or beige than white when cooked. Skipjack, yellowfin, tongol and sometimes bigeye are sold as “light” tuna; cans of light tuna may be a mix of different species.
What’s the difference between solid and chunk tuna?
Solid means larger pieces; chunk consists of smaller pieces, but it sometimes looks more like shredded tuna, and it can be mushy. Chunk is usually cheaper.
What’s healthier—tuna in water or in oil?