Heart disease is the number one cause of death in America. More people die from heart disease than cancer, strokes, or car accidents. In fact, more than 600,000 people die from heart disease every year. While these numbers may have you nervous, there are simple things you can do to lower your risk for heart disease. In addition to exercising, avoiding tobacco products, and limiting alcohol consumption, consuming one or two servings of fish each week could significantly reduce your overall risk of a cardiovascular disease, heart attack, even death.
The American Heart Association, for quite some time, has urged people to consume fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids at a minimum of twice per week. Many doctors are of the opinion that the omega-3 fatty acids in fish, or unsaturated fats, are the nutrients responsible for reducing the risk of dying from heart disease. That being said, though, a recent study and research indicated that there are additional nutrients in fish that work hand in hand with omega-3 fatty acids to reduce the risk of heart disease.
Some are skeptical, even concerned, that the amount of contaminants and mercury contained in fish deserve more attention than the overall health benefits of fish. When it comes to a healthy heart and cardiovascular system, the benefits of regular dietary consumption of fish almost always exceed the potential risks of consuming mercury and other contaminants.
How Does Omega 3 Help Prevent Heart Disease?
One of the primary reasons fish & omega-3 work effectively to reduce the risk of heart disease is due to the unsaturated fatty acids that actively lower your cholesterol. Overall, however, the omega-3 fatty acids are the primary beneficial ingredient in fish. In addition to lowering cholesterol, the fatty acids have also been found to reduce inflammation in all areas of the body. Inflammation leads to a variety of health issues. In regards to cardiovascular health, though, omega-3 fatty acids are responsible for lowering the risk of strokes, heart attacks and preventing blood vessels from becoming damaged.
The omega-3 fatty acids have also been found to decrease your triglyceride levels, reduce blood clotting, lower blood pressure and reduce irregular heartbeat problems. In numerous studies, those who had incorporated fish into their diet on a regular basis saw a significant reduction of potentially sudden cardiac death.
What Types of Fish Contain the Highest Levels of Omega 3?
Some wonder what fish is best to eat in order to get the proper amount of omega-3 in their diet. As the saying goes, there are plenty of fish in the sea. Fatty fish such as tuna, salmon, trout and halibut contain the highest amount of omega-3 fatty acids. Therefore, these fish are the most beneficial for your diet. That being said, though, almost every type of seafood contains some amount of omega-3. If you are concerned that your diet alone isn’t enough, you can always try adding an Omega 3 supplement such as Kyani Sunset or NatureMade, just to name a few.
There are, however, some types of fish that are not as healthy. Catfish and Tilapia have been shown to not be as healthy due to a higher level of unhealthy fatty acids. There has also been research conducted comparing farm-raised fish and wildly harvested fish. Many researchers conclude that because farm-raised fish are exposed to pesticides, antibiotics and other chemicals, these fish may potentially have harmful effects on people who consume them. Interestingly enough, though, some farm-raised fish such as trout, salmon and sea bass showed higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids than those wildly harvested. Researchers mainly conclude that opting for wildly caught fish is more often than not the healthier option.