It’s true that you should include several servings of fish in your diet each week for optimal health. In general, fish is a great option for lean protein, which is an important part of a healthy diet. With that said, it can be confusing, given the variety of fish available at restaurants, to figure out the best choices.
Ultimately, the fish you choose should have a flavor and texture you enjoy. In addition, your choice should be prepared healthfully, such as steamed, broiled, grilled or baked, to minimize added fat and calories. Most importantly, to get the most bang for your nutritional buck, opt for fish that are naturally high in omega-3 fatty acids. In fact, The American Heart Association recommends that individuals eat fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids at least twice a week in order to reduce the risk of heart attack and heart disease.
Here’s what you should know about heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids and fish:
- What are omega-3 fatty acids? A type of unsaturated fatty acid that may reduce inflammation throughout the body. Inflammation in the body can damage blood vessels and lead to heart disease.
- What are the benefits of eating fish containing omega-3 fatty acids? Lowered blood pressure, reduced blood clotting, decreased risk of stroke and heart disease.
- Which fish contain omega-3 fatty acids? Salmon, lake trout, herring, anchovies, mackerel, sardines and tuna (A.K.A Fatty Fish) are all high in omega-3 fatty acids.
How much should I eat? The recommended intake for the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish is 500 milligrams per day, which equals about two 6-ounce servings of fatty fish per week.