Salmon is the most popular seafood and is considered the most valued seafood that is commercially sold. It comes in a wide range of variety with each having its own specific traits. However, all salmon species are considered greatly beneficial to health. There has been a lot of buzz about making the right choice of fish. People would suggest to use freshwater salmon or buy it from a certain type of outlet. It is also said that freezing increases its calories and lowers down its nutritional value. With so many opinions flowing in the market, it becomes difficult to buy the fish. Here we try to present a clear picture of the types of salmons and how to choose the healthiest fish to add to your meal.
- Weighing Atlantic and Pacific salmon
All different types of salmon can be classified into two broad categories – pacific salmon and Atlantic salmon. There was a time when both Atlantic and Pacific salmon were caught wild-caught. However, in the past few years, the Atlantic salmon has been declared endangered as there is a significant decline in the population of this fish. Since then, there has been a ban of wild-catching Atlantic salmon. For that reason, the Atlantic salmon that you find in your nearby supermarket is farmed. On the other hand, pacific salmon can still be wild-caught and are also farmed. While there is no harm in consuming farmed salmon, most people do not deem it the best choice. The wild-caught pacific fish is available in various varieties to suit your taste and preferences. You should also know that these fishes are typically sold from June to September which is the season you are most likely to find the best product.
- Choosing the healthiest fish
The difference between the nutritional values of the farmed salmon and wild-caught ones is due to the kind of food the fishes feed throughout their life. The farm fishes are raised in pens fed the land-based fish food while the wild-caught salmon transit freely between ocean and freshwater and consume a variety of natural diet like smaller fish.
The way these fishes are raised makes a considerable difference between the nutrition they can provide to you. Conventional belief says that both the farmed and wild-caught fishes are loaded with healthy unsaturated fat that is also known as the omega-3 fatty acid. However, the farmed salmon is also believed to have a large proportion of unhealthy saturated fat. For that reason, most people consider wild-caught salmon healthier and prefer pacific varieties over Atlantic salmon.
However, if you are not able to find the wild-caught salmon, farmed ones are still considered a healthy food. These fishes still have a high content of omega-3 fatty acids and much lesser unhealthy fats in comparison with other protein sources like chicken and steak. Even the farmed salmon is a great source of lean protein. Consuming any type of salmon is likely to provide several health benefits like improving cardiovascular health, impending heart diseases and stroke, maintaining a healthy weight, etc.