Fish- What kind is safe and healthy to serve up?

Canadian Rainbow Trout

Canadian Rainbow Trout


Fish is fish right? Well not exactly. As it turns out some fish are better than others when it comes to being healthy for us and low in contaminants.

Certain fish are high in omega 3’s. According to Harvard School of Public Health, Omega -3 fatty acids are essential for normal body function such as building cell membranes in the brain and for controlling blood clotting. Studies have shown Omega 3 has benefits associated with a long list of conditions from heart disease and cancer to inflammatory bowel disease and rheumatoid arthritis.

The Environment Defense Fund, the U.S non-profit environmental advocacy group, has compiled a list of 10 fish that are high in omega 3’s, are safe to eat and are produced in an environmentally friendly way. Madaleno Magazine shares that list with you below:

  •          Wild Alaska Salmon

Wild will cost you a lot more, but the farmed salmon is produced under conditions where there is a lot of waste and parasites can spread.

  •          Atlantic Mackeral

Mackeral are considered hardy; however, Spanish and king varieties of Mackeral have potential for mercury poisoning so Atlantic is the preferred option according to the EDF.

  •          Arctic Char

Wild isn’t easy to get but the good news is that farm practices aren’t linked to pollution or contamination so the farmed variety is just fine.

  •          Sablefish or Black cod

The fish caught in British Columbia and Alaska is considered the safest.

  •          Rainbow trout

Due to overfishing in the Great Lakes, the experts suggest farmed rainbow or golden trout; however, due to mild PCB contamination children’s trout consumption should be limited to a couple times per month.

  •          Sardines

These fish are so small that they don’t usually have the same mercury issues that some larger fish face.

  •          Anchovies

They are small enough that the contamination is not a problem and they reproduce quickly which means they are plentiful.

  •          Albacore Tuna

A lot of canned tuna comes from fisheries that use wasteful methods and capture other species. The EDF suggests tuna from U.S or Canadian fisheries.

  •          Mussels

They are raised and cultivated in an environmentally responsible manner

  •          Oysters

A lot of oysters come from farming and are perfectly fine. The operations have a low impact on the environment.

Now not all of us are fish eaters, but omega 3 fatty acids exist in other foods. There are two major types of omega-3 acids: One is called ALA and can be found in some vegetable oils and in walnuts, as well as some green vegetables such as kale, spinach and Brussels sprouts. The other is called EPA and DHA and is found in fatty fish. The body converts ALA to EPA and DHA. So you can always sprinkle some walnuts into your cereal in the morning or some vegetable oil into your salad dressing at lunch time.

Doctors and nutritionists say that the majority of Americans and Canadians do not get enough omega-3 fatty acids in their daily diets.


2 thoughts on “Fish- What kind is safe and healthy to serve up?

  1. Thanks, Teresa.

    I have just about given up on these things. I can’t keep track of what’s good today and bad tomorrow.
    I’ve probably eaten enough bad farmed salmon to keel over and die. I often eat Atlantic salmon. For years now.

    We eat a lot of fish and chicken, but the whitefish is all from China, which has weak environmental controls, and the atlantic salmon here is farmed, so who the heck knows?
    I’m trying to eat as much asparagus, blueberrries, avocado, coconut, oatmeal, etc. as possible, but tomorrow all of those things may be bad for me. Lord, give me strength!

  2. My apologies-I somehow missed this comment- and yes I know what you mean. What you think is okay today could be not-so-good tomorrow. In terms of the fish, I am trying to learn more and more since I am a vegetarian.

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