Something's Fishy Around Here

Hello! Hope everyone had a good weekend! As promised, here's some info I found on fish. I'm certainly no expert - I'm just on a quest to learn more about food and want to share what I find. 

I'm betting that most of us need to eat more fish. I know I do! But do we know why? Really the only thing I knew was that fish contains Omega-3 fatty acids. But why do I need that? And what else is in there? Here are some of the benefits:
  • Omega-3 fatty acids help to: decrease heart disease, reduce blood pressure, prevent arthritis, promote healthy brain function
  • low in fat and high in protein 
  • fatty fish helps with short-term memory
  • good option for diabetics (protein aids in the regulation of blood sugar)
  • great source of vitamins and minerals, such as riboflavin, Vitamin D, calcium, phosphorus, iron, zinc, potassium, iodine, and magnesium
  • (source: WA Dept. of Health website click here)
The above link also has basic cooking instructions and some recipes. 

So what are the dangers of eating fish? The biggest thing is Mercury. Mercury occurs naturally in the environment but the biggest sources are chlorine chemical plants and coal-fired power plants. Emissions are discharged into the air and wind up in our rivers and lakes. The bad news is that it can cause serious health problems by interfering with the brain and nervous system. The good news is that we can control our exposure by eating fish with low mercury levels and also by paying attention to the frequency of our intake. With this in mind, the benefits far outweigh the risk. 

I found two guides, one from the WA Dept of Health and one from the National Resources Defense Council. They're pretty much the same, but I always like to have options! Most of the information I found, including other websites, suggests eating fish (with low Mercury levels) on average about two times a week. Pregnant women and children are at higher risk so special attention should be paid in these cases.

If you are fortunate enough to catch your own fish or get it from friends or family who do, you can check Mercury levels for specific bodies of water on the EPA website:

I think that covers most of it...??

OK, Ciao for now ;-)


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