Why eat fish?
Fish is an essential part of a healthy diet.
Experts advise two servings of fish every week. Time and again, studies have concluded that eating fish is absolutely necessary for a healthy life. A Harvard study published in 2006 states: “the intake of fish reduces total mortality – deaths from any causes – by 17%”.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids: A “healthy fat?”
Nutritionists advise replacing meat in your diet with fish. This is not only because fish is a leaner source of protein, but because the fat you do receive from fish is good for you!
That’s right! The fat found in oily fish, known as Omega-3 fatty acids, is an essential building block of life. But, our bodies cannot produce this on our own. We get it from food. National nutritional surveys suggest that most people do not get enough omega-3’s.
Oily fish like salmon, trout, tuna and herring are the best sources of Omega-3’s you can get! Here are the many reasons fish should be a regular part of your diet:
A Healthy Heart
The American Heart Association boldly states: ”go fish”. They recommend eating fish at least two times a week. Omega-3′s found in certain fish reduce risk factors for heart disease including high cholesterol and high blood pressure. It lowers levels of bad fat in blood which decreases the risk of heart attack, stroke and irregular heart rhythms.. Eating two servings of fish a week cuts your risk of a stroke in half.
A Healthy Brain
Fish is brain food! As we age, so do our brains. Studies consistently point to eating fish as a key part of maintaining a healthy brain. Omega-3’s have amazing brain power and have been linked to lower levels of dementia, stroke, and mental decline. In fact, they play a vital role in enhancing memory as we age. A Harvard study confirms that eating fish is an important part of neurological development in children.
Individuals with Type II diabetes often have high levels of bad fat and low levels of good fat in their blood. A healthy intake of Omega-3’s can lower these blood fat levels, increase good HDL cholesterol, reduce blood clotting, and may even help with glucose control! Pediatricians also agree that eating fish is an important part of protecting children from diabetes.
Healthy Bones and Joints
A number of studies have concluded that a diet rich in Omega-3’s may help reduce symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis including joint pain and muscle stiffness. It also prevents osteoporosis, as Omega-3’s help increase levels of calcium. The University of Maryland Medical Center published the results of a study which concluded that women over 65 with diets rich in Omega-3’s show significantly less bone loss than women with mild levels of Omega-3’s. Some of the women’s bone density actually increased.
A Healthy Mind
Omega-3’s found in oily fish have been shown to increase levels of serotonin in the brain, which aid in managing depression. Omega-3’s also reduces instances of mood swings.
A Healthy Pregnancy
DHA, one type of Omega-3 , is essential for the development of babies’ brains and eyes. The best way for babies to get this fatty acid is for their mothers to eat fish, especially fatty fish, while they are pregnant and breastfeeding. While some people have concerns about mercury poisoning from eating fish while pregnant, these have been shown to stem from instances of pilot whale consumption in Japan. There have been no documented cases of prenatal murcery poisoning from fish consumption outside of Japan.
Some fish are rich in selenium, which some experts applaud for its cancer-fighting properties. A Swedish study found that men who do not eat fish double to triple their risk of prostate cancer.
Some dermatologists say that salmon reduces wrinkles, inflammation and acne.
Ophthalmologists agree that insufficient levels of Omega-3 in a diet lead to the degeneration of the eye and decreased vision.
Fish is Versatile.
Fish Tastes Great!
Eat “Local” – Support Michigan’s Economy.