Fads come and go, and many foods that have been tagged as “superfood” are eventually shown to be less than heroic. However, one superfood that lives up to its billing is salmon. A delicious time-tested favorite of fish lovers, salmon also has amazing health benefits, so much so that the FDA is currently considering allowing genetically modified salmon to hit the market so the price of salmon will go down and more people will able to consume it. Duke professor Martin D. Smith, an environmental economics specialist, thinks the benefits of salmon need to be more widely available: “Lower prices for salmon would have significant public health benefits.”
What is it about this fish that makes public health officials and environmentalists alike agree that it is a superfood and would be a boon to the health of the general public? First off, salmon is low in calories and saturated fat but high in protein. In a society in love with fatty meats, salmon is an excellent alternative. It’s easily digestable and absorbable proteins help repair muscle tissue and build new ones, and do so without containing carcinogenic compounds found in other meats.
Additionally, salmon is high in omega-3 essential fatty acids. These fatty acids are necessary for human health but cannot be created by the human body — they can only be absorbed from foods consumed. Many people take omega-3 and other fish oil supplements to obtain the nutrient, but recent studies have shown that eating salmon twice a week has the same health benefits of swallowing 1-2 fish oil capsules per day.
Why do we need omega-3s? These fatty acids reduce risk of inflammation and promote the maintenance and well-being of the circulatory and immune systems. Salmon contains a particularly beneficial balance of saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated fats that are not found in very many other places in nature. Omega-3s help reduce cholesterol and blood pressure, promote a healthy metabolism, and help reduce the chances of heart disease by also preventing the hardening of walls of arteries and veins.
Salmon also helps prevent vision loss because omega-3s prevent macular degeneration, dryness and eye fatigue. Eating salmon makes for healthier hair, nails, and skin because it is rich in selenium, iron, calcium, and phosphorus, which are necessary for tissue build-up.
The amino acids found in salmon help improve memory, provide more energy and focus, and make the brain work more efficiently. It also helps prevent damage from ageing, such as memory loss or more serious conditions like dementia and even Alzheimer’s.
On top of all these health benefits, salmon is a sustainable fish, with wild populations thriving in Alaska due to smart planning and tight regulation. Salmon can be eaten relatively guilt-free with regards to the environment, much more so than other fishes and meats.
What can’t salmon do? It seems like nothing. It is good for the heart, eyes, brain, skin, hair, nearly everything. Salmon truly is a superfood, one the FDA wants to see as a bigger part of more Americans’ diets.
Want some tasty salmon recipes? Fresh Water Favourites contains over 300 healthy, nutritious and tasty fish recipes. Some of the highlights include apple maple salmon, italian BBQ salmon and red pepper salmon. So if you are looking for some unique ways to enjoy this superfood give Fresh Water Favourites a try: