How can health benefits of fish improve your diet and overall lifestyle?
Lucky for most, seafood is a delicious and nutritious food that has several health advantages.
There are many different fish health benefits – such as how it enhances brain and heart health, promotes healthy hair and skin, and can prevent some forms of cancer – and there is plenty of evidence to support these advantages too.
Fish is one of the world’s healthiest foods.
It’s abundant in key nutrients like protein and vitamin D, and another important component of fish is omega-3 fatty acids, which are needed for your body and brain’s wellness.
Let’s take a more in-depth look at some of the most significant fish nutritional benefits and explore the science behind each one.
1. Fish is high in protein and low in saturated fat.
Fish products are an excellent source of lean protein, which is crucial for maintaining and rebuilding muscle structure.
It often has very little saturated fat which can help reduce the risk of heart disease, as well as iodine, high-quality protein, and several other vitamins and minerals that most people’s diets are typically deficient in.
Fish is a lean white meat that is full of nutrients and also contains omega-3 fatty acids.
Pro Tip: Omega-3 fatty acids along with vitamins A and B are essential nutrients found in fish products for maintaining the health of your brain, eyes, and immune system.
2. Fish products are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
Fish and some other kinds of seafood are excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids.
Omega-3s are a family of essential fatty acids that provide several health benefits, and since your body cannot produce them on its own, you must obtain them from your diet.
Omega-3 fatty acids have anti-inflammatory properties, they can help protect you against heart disease, and they can help to improve cognitive development in children.
Pro Tip: Eating fatty fish (or taking omega-3 supplements manufactured from microalgae) at least once or twice a week is recommended to satisfy your omega-3 needs.
3. Fish and seafood can improve heart health.
As mentioned above, one of the biggest nutritional benefits of fish and seafood is that these products contain omega-3 fatty acids which our bodies cannot produce on their own.
Heart attacks and strokes are two of the world’s leading causes of early mortality; therefore, omega-3s in fish products can be extremely valuable to your heart’s health since they can reduce blood pressure and enhance general cardiovascular health.
Pro Tip: Research has shown that eating fish at least once a week lowers the risk of heart attacks and strokes, especially fatty types of fish that are high in omega-3 fatty acids.
4. Fish products can improve brain function and cognitive development in children.
Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) are long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids that are abundant in fish products.
Studies have shown that not only are EPA and DHA important for proper fetal development but they are also crucial to the development and functioning of the brain at every stage of life.
In light of the high number of benefits, children should be encouraged to eat fish for optimal growth and development.
Pro Tip: Studies have shown a 24% reduction in the risk of childhood asthma in those whose diets consistently include fish products and other seafood.
5. Fish in one’s diet can help to prevent depression and anxiety.
Although depression isn’t discussed nearly as often as heart disease is, it remains one of the biggest health problems in the world.
As previously mentioned, fish products have many nutritional health benefits, including omega-3 fatty acids which have proven to be an effective part of depression treatment.
According to several controlled studies, omega-3 fatty acids may help fight depression and greatly boost the efficacy of antidepressant drugs.
Pro Tip: The American Psychiatric Association endorses omega-3s as a useful component of depression treatment, recommending 2-3 servings of fish per week to prevent decline.
6. Fish can improve eye health and vision.
Omega-3s have proven to help enhance eyesight and eye health, as well as vitamins A and D which many people are often deficient in.
According to research, these fish health benefits are due to the fact that the brain and eyes are highly concentrated in omega-3 fatty acids and therefore, they greatly depend on them to be healthy and operate properly.
One of the best sources of these healthy fats and vitamins is salmon.
Pro Tip: For your retinas to function properly, you need two different kinds of omega-3 fatty acids: DHA and EPA. Both can be found in salmon and can protect against glaucoma.
7. Fish nutrients can help to prevent certain types of cancer.
Cancer-fighting foods include apples, berries, and fatty fish. Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish and shellfish may have cancer-fighting properties; therefore, eating seafood may be associated with a reduced risk of certain types of cancer.
Indeed, a study by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that people who ate more fish had a decreased risk of developing digestive malignancies than those who consumed less fish.
Pro Tip: In addition to omega-3 fatty acids, fish can also contain high levels of vitamin D and selenium, both of which may help prevent the growth of some cancers.