7 Healthy Benefits of Eating Fish
Fish and seafood are delicious dietary options that we can add to our diet. There’s nothing quite like an expertly prepared, plank-grilled salmon filet, or a fresh cod. I had the most AMAZING fish at a Las Vegas sports bar.
I still think about it.
Aside from being delicious, fish is also one of the most beneficial sources of protein that nature can provide. It’s filled with essential nutrients, like omega-3 fatty acids. Plus, it’s a great source of protein to keep your body lean and your muscles strong.
Read on to consider some of the best health positive reasons why you should be eating more fish.
1. Heart Healthy
According to a study published in the American Journal of Cardiology, fish consumption is associated with a lower risk of coronary heart disease. Fish, especially salmon, are rich in heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants. They can reduce inflammation, help protect your heart, and stave off chronic disease.
2. Boosts Digestive Health
According to recent studies, people who consume a diet consisting of fish and vegetables are 43% less likely to develop bowel cancer. In comparison to those who consume red meat and poultry.
A major factor here could be the absence of meat. Eating a lot of red and/or processed meat is a major risk factor for a plethora of digestive diseases. However, compared to vegans or vegetarians, people who ate fish appeared to fare a bit better.
3. Improves Mental Health
The Journal of Psychiatry & Neuroscience found in a recent study that fish oil can help improve symptoms of depression. Especially when taken with a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant. Although there are reports of fish oil decreasing symptoms of depression on its own. There is still much more research to be conducted before this claim can be considered a fact.
4. Brain Boosting Benefits
According to the British Medical Journal, 2 servings per week of oily fish can ‘moderately but significantly’ reduce the risk of stroke, according to a 2012 study. Another study by the University of Cincinnati found that nine out of 15 migraine sufferers saw a significant decline in symptoms after taking fish oil supplements for six weeks. According to research from the University of Alabama, people who eat a diet rich in fish are 19% less likely to experience memory loss and conditions like Alzheimer’s later in life.
5. Protects Eyesight
According to a study involving more than 2,500 people at the John Hopkins University of Baltimore, eating one portion of oily fish each week could reduce your risk of age-related macular degeneration – one of the most common causes of blindness – by as much as 60%.
During another study, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality found that omega-3 fatty acids are beneficial to improving vision and eye health. This is because the brain and eyes are heavily concentrated in omega-3 fatty acids and need them to maintain their health and function.
6. Helps Alleviate Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis
For those who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis, which is chronic inflammation of your joints, eating more fish can help alleviate the swelling and pain. The American College of Rheumatology found that increased consumption of fish actually lowers disease activity in rheumatoid arthritis.
According to a 2013 study published in the journal Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases. Eating at least one portion of oily fish each week can halve the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis.
7. Boosts Metabolism
Research from the Department of Human Health and Nutritional Sciences at the University of Guelph found that omega-3 fatty acids have a positive effect on your metabolism. The study noted that this healthy fat boosted resting and exercise metabolic rates, as well as fat oxidation, in older women.
Omega-3: Nature’s Cure-All?
A growing body of evidence indicates that omega-3 fatty acids provide a number of health benefits. This means that increasing your intake fish and seafood can help you maintain cardiovascular health. It plays a role in the regulation of blood clotting and vessel constriction.
Omega-3’s are also important for prenatal and postnatal neurological development. They may reduce tissue inflammation and alleviate the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis. They can also play a beneficial role in cardiac arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat), as well as reducing depression and halt the mental decline in older people.
With so many potential benefits, the results are clear. Fish is a great source of lean protein and healthy fats, as well as a delicious and healthy meal option. Plus, there are so many different ways to prepare fish that make it taste amazing.
What is your favourite type of fish?
Let me know, til then–cheers m’deres!
Nancy Polanco is a freelance journalist, lifestyle content creator, and editor of Whispered Inspirations. She is a proud Mom to Gabby and Michaela and partner and best friend to Darasak. Having worked as part of a health care team for almost a decade, Nancy is happy to be back to her passion. She is a contributor to the Huffington Post, TODAY’s Parents, and an Oprah Magazine Brand Ambassador.