Salmon – Simply Scrumptious & Healthy Too!
Salmon is not only a great source of protein, but also an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, niacin, phosphorus, vitamin B6 + B12, vitamin D and selenium. It also is a good source of choline, pantothenic acid, biotin and potassium. Simply put, salmon is scrumptious and also very good for you!
Eight Health Benefits of Salmon:
- Eating salmon is beneficial in the treatment of osteoarthritis, muscle and joint pain as well as other inflammatory conditions.
- Salmon contains a protein known as calcitonin, which has shown to increase, regulate and stabilize the synthesis of collagen in osteoarthritic cartilage in humans. Calcitonin also improves bone density and strength. In addition, omega-3 fatty acids present in salmon act as natural anti-inflammatory agents for our bodies, helping not only to reduce aches and pains, but also in reducing inflammation in all areas of our bodies (nervous system, musculoskeletal system, digestive system, and much more!)
- Eating salmon makes you smarter and happier.
- The human brain is ~60% fat, of which most is the omega-3 fatty acid, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). DHA makes up ~30% of the grey matter in your brain, and is critical to brain function and a healthy nervous system. Consuming salmon regularly has been shown to improve mood, as well as reduce the risk and incidence of depression and cognitive decline in the elderly.
- Eating salmon is beneficial for your heart health.
- Salmon is high in the omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). These fatty acids are responsible for many heart health benefits, including reducing inflammation, helping with lipolysis (breakdown of fats), keeping blood from clotting excessively and relaxing and dilating your arteries. When eaten 2-3x per week, salmon may help to protect you from cardiovascular issues such as heart attack, stroke, arrhythmia, high blood pressure and high blood cholesterol levels.
- Salmon is protective for your eyes.
- Consuming salmon 2x per week has been shown to significantly reduce the risk of macular degeneration, a chronic eye condition that can lead to loss of vision. Some other studies have also shown that consuming salmon 2x per week helps to prevent and treat keratoconjunctivitis sicca (dry eye syndrome).
- Eating salmon can help to reduce your risk of cancer.
- Eating fish rich in omega-3 fatty aides is associated with decreased risk for many types of cancer, including: breast cancer, prostate cancer and colorectal cancer. Some of the strongest evidence for decreased cancer risk following regular consumption of omega-3 fish involve blood cell- or lymph cell- related cancers, such as leukaemia, multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkins lymphoma. Consuming fish in omega-3, such as salmon, at least 1x per week is recommended in order to show measurable benefits.
- Salmon helps in the development in children’s brains.
- Eating salmon while pregnant and nursing can boost your child’s capacity to learn and perform academically. In preschool children, eating salmon may aid in the prevention of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and can also help to boost academic performance. As mentioned above, salmon contains high levels of DHA, the main structural fatty acid in your brain, central nervous system and retina, a pretty important aspect of our “smarts” we would say!
- Salmon is an excellent source of vitamin D.
- Vitamin D is essential to maintaining optimal health. A deficiency of vitamin D has been linked to an increased risk of cancer, heart disease, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, joint and muscle pain, depression, and diabetes type 1.
- Salmon can help you sleep better!
- In addition to containing high levels of vitamin D, salmon is also an excellent source of tryptophan, an important essential amino acid that is crucial to the synthesis of other proteins. Tryptophan is a precursor to the neurotransmitters serotonin and melatonin, which are crucial in the regulation of our sleep cycles. Studies have shown that tryptophan can help to increase sleepiness in subjects with mild insomnia and can also help to shorten the time it takes for an individual to fall asleep.
Dr. Katie’s Favourite Oven-Baked Salmon Recipe:
Salmon fillets, skinless
Salt & pepper
Freshly finely chopped garlic (can also sub granulated garlic)
Coconut oil / Olive oil / Butter
- Pat dry salmon and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Brush salmon lightly with oil of choice.
- Season salmon with spices (no need to measure, just sprinkle on!)
- Bake uncovered on middle rack of oven, at 425 deg for 8-10 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork.
- When fish looks almost done, add a tiny dollop of oil of your choice on top. Put the fish back in the oven for 1 minute or so until the oil melts, then broil for 2-3 minutes to gently crisp up the fillets – don’t walk away from the oven, keep a close eye; salmon is done when very lightly browned.
- Serve immediately. Enjoy!
Author: Dr. Katie Au, B.Sc. Kin (Hons), D.C., D.Ac, CSCS, FCCRS©, ART®, GT®
Toronto Chiropractor | Acupuncture Practitioner | Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist