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Make friends with fish

2 minute read
Fish is a great, versatile healthy meal option.

We often hear how good fish is for our hearts and overall health but what makes it so great?

Eating fish two or more times a week may reduce the risk of many diseases ranging from heart disease to childhood asthma. Eating fish during pregnancy may even reduce the risk of having a premature baby.

Besides being high in protein, fish is an excellent - and the only readily available - source of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids. These omega-3 fatty acids are the secret ingredient that makes fish so good for us. An increased intake of this nutrient has been linked to improvements in the health of the heart, joints, brain and more.

The fish that contain the most omega-3 fatty acids are oily varieties like ocean trout, salmon, sardines and tuna. While fresh is best when it comes to fish, canned varieties are a convenient option when fresh is just not possible. Keep an eye out for varieties that contain higher omega-3 levels.

And by the way, getting more fish in your diet doesn't mean you've got license to dig into the battered-and-served-with-chips variety. That's still in the 'treats' category! Try cooking it yourself and experiment with some healthier options.

Fish is perfect for dishing up with some fresh veggies. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Baked: Sauté onion, tomatoes, capsicum and garlic until softened. Place fish fillets in a baking dish and cover with the sautéed mix. Cook in a hot oven (200C) for around 15 minutes, or until cooked through.
  • Grilled: Rub salmon with a mix of your favourite spices (try paprika, cayenne and oregano) and grill until just cooked through.
  • Steamed: Wrap a piece of fish securely in a sheet of baking paper along with some lemon wedges, asparagus or broccolini and fresh herbs. Place on a tray and put in a hot oven (200C) for around 10 minutes, or until cooked through.

If you're still not a fan of fish, consider taking a fish oil supplement to ensure you're not missing out on this vital nutrient.

Interested in a health coach?

The COACH Program® is a confidential free health coaching service delivered over the phone by nib's Accredited Practicing Dietitians to help those at risk of, or with, Coronary Heart Disease. Based on a self-management model, it's all about helping you to take better care of yourself. Please phone 1800 339 219 or email [email protected] for more information.

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