How to Pick Healthy Fish
If you’ve been paying attention to nutrition trends at all, you probably already know you should be eating more fish. But unless you grew up near the coast, chances are you don’t have a clue how to pick healthy fish or how to cook it well. It’s way easier than you think and super healthy for you, so let’s dig in.
Health Benefits of Fish
Let’s go over some of the health benefits of fish. It’s common knowledge that fish is high in protein and low in unhealthy fat. In fact, white-fleshed fish is one of the lowest fat proteins out there.
But, what about Omega-3s? Our bodies don’t make enough of this beneficial fatty acid – and fish are one of the best ways to get it. The oilier the fish, the higher it is in Omega-3s.
Did you know that eating fish regularly can also reduce depression? And, a diet loaded with fish can also lower your blood pressure, help prevent strokes, and even reduce the risk of coronary artery disease.
How to Buy the Best Fish
Now, let’s go over some things to look for when buying fish.
If you’re buying fresh fish, the first thing you need to know is that it shouldn’t smell fishy. Wild caught salmon [Alaska caught is best] should smell like salt water. If there is any fishy odor, leave it there…it’s not fresh enough. Ask questions of your butcher. It should be packed in ice and consumed [or frozen] within two days of purchase.
If you’re buying your fish frozen, vacuum packed is best. Thaw it n the refrigerator. The same rule of smell applies to frozen fish…it shouldn’t smell fishy.
Don’t forget canned fish. Sardines, anchovies and herring are excellent sources of protein and Omegas. Check out this Insanity Lunch Recipe for Tuna Salad in a Tomato.
Best Kinds of Fish to Eat
What are the best kinds of fish to eat? My favorites are wild caught salmon, albacore tuna, and farmed raised rainbow trout.
The following fish are high in mercury and should be avoided – mackerel, shark, Chilean sea bass, and swordfish.
Skip farm raised salmon. Not only does it contain more contaminants, but the nutrition is significantly inferior to wild caught:
These days, I also stay away from tilapia because recent studies are revealing that it’s one of the least healthiest choice. It’s actually low in Omega-3s and high Omega-6s, which have been linked to Alzheimers and inflammation. There are also pretty disgusting rumors floating around about the diet of farm-raised fish from China. With over 95% of the tilapia we eat coming from overseas, that kind of concerns me.
Check out this app that will help you choose the healthiest fish from sustainable sources—Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch
Don’t overthink it. Stick with my Simple Eating mantra and just throw some olive oil and seasonings on a filet and pop it in your oven.
If you want to do something more with your filet, you’ll find some yummy recipes here:
So, now that you know how to pick healthy fish, try to work it into your diet twice a week and soak up the nutritional benefits!