Fish Free Diets

About the Allergen

  • Fish is one of the top eight allergens in the United States and is required to be identified on nutrition labels, with the specific type of fish contained in the product.
  • The label “fish” includes finfish such as tuna, salmon, cod, haddock, perch, tilapia, and halibut, to name a few.
  • Finfish allergy is a completely different allergy than shellfish allergy, which includes shrimp, lobster, and prawns, for example.
  • This food allergy is most common among adults, with an estimated 40% of people reporting their first allergic reaction to finfish as adults.

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Nutrition Information

When replacing a food allergen, you will need to focus on incorporating a variety of whole foods in your diet that contain the nutrients you’re missing due to eliminating the problem food.

  • Nutrients in fish vary among species. In general, fish is an important source of protein, niacin, vitamin B12, phosphorus, selenium, and omega 3 fatty acids among others. If eliminating fish from your diet, use a variety of these foods as alternatives:
    • Protein: meat, poultry, dairy products, eggs, beans, legumes, tree nuts, seeds
    • Niacin: chicken, pork, beef, lamb, turkey, soy products, seeds, peanuts, beans, legumes, eggs, dairy products, whole grains
    • Vitamin B12: dairy prodcuts, eggs, beef, lamb, pork, chicken, turkey, as well as fortified breakfast cereals, nuritional yeast, and beverages
    • Phosphorus: turkey, seeds, nuts, whole grains, beans, legumes, dairy products
    • Selenium: Brazil nuts, pork, beef, turkey, eggs, lamb, chicken, wheat, sunflower seeds, barley
    • Omega 3 fatty acids: flaxseeds, walnuts, soybean oil, canola oil, algal oil, soy products, eggs fortified with DHA

Reading Labels

Fish is commonly found in bouillabaisse, Caesar dressing, egg rolls, fish oil supplements, fish sauce, fish sticks, fish stock, anchovies isinglass, seafood dips, sushi, tempura, tuna salad, and Worcestershire sauce. This list is not all inclusive.

Alternatives and Suggested Products

Suggested products include:

    • Gardein, fishless filets
    • Loma Linda Tuno, plant based seafood alternative
    • Good Catch, fish-free Tuna
    • Sophie’s Kitchen, plant based seafood
    • Quorn Vegan Fishless Sticks
    • Vegenaise Tartar Sauce
    • TofunaFysh Fysh Sauce

NOTE: Always double check the allergy statement on any products you purchase. Food manufacturers may change their ingredients at any time.


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