Healthy Living

published : 2023-11-10

From salmon to shark: The best and worst fish for your health

Healthiest fish you can eat, according to dietitians

A close-up photo of a deliciously grilled salmon fillet served on a bed of leafy greens, taken with a Canon EOS 5D Mark IV.

Fish is often hailed as a nutritional heavy hitter — providing a slew of health benefits.

Salmon is among the best choices of fish when it comes to healthy dining choices.

Not all fish are created equal when it comes to their nutrition profile, so choosing specific ones may be more beneficial for your health.

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There are good reasons this fish gets a lot of lovin’ from health professionals.

Salmon is high in omega-3s, which is an important part of any balanced diet.

Elaborating on omega-3s, research shows that omega-3 consumption decreases overall mortality from heart disease.

Salmon also has anti-inflammatory properties, making it beneficial for those suffering from arthritis.

For all these reasons and more, it’s probably a good idea to add omega-3 rich foods to your diet.

An artistic shot of a plate filled with an assortment of fresh oysters, beautifully arranged on a rustic wooden table, taken with a Nikon D850.

Oysters, like salmon and sardines, are high in omega-3s and also high in iron.

Sardines are rich in EPA and DHA, omega 3 fatty acids, that provide anti-inflammatory, heart health benefits.

Sardines also have a unique nutritional profile because they are rich in calcium, which helps with bone health and heartbeat regularity.

Halibut is rich in selenium, a heart-healthy antioxidant that reduces inflammation and oxidative stress.

Halibut is also a good source of vitamin B6, which is beneficial for immune, nerve, and liver health.

Red snapper is a rich source of potassium, which helps improve blood pressure and arterial health.

Red snapper is also a good source of protein and B vitamins.

Sole has a high risk for contaminants and is low in many heart-healthy nutrients.

It is also high in sodium relative to potassium, which may increase blood pressure levels.

A vibrant image of a colorful dish featuring sardines, tomatoes, and herbs, garnished with a squeeze of lemon, taken with a Sony Alpha a7R III.

Farmed tilapia contains high levels of contaminants, antibiotics, and omega-6 fatty acids, which can negatively contribute to your health goals.

Orange roughy has a long lifespan, meaning it often picks up many contaminants throughout its life, including high levels of mercury.

Shark is very high in mercury, which is a neurotoxin. It should be avoided completely by pregnant women and children.

Tuna is a rich source of vitamins B6 and B12, which help support immune, hormonal, and nerve health.

Tuna is not a great source of anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids and contains high levels of mercury.

Due to its high mercury content, it may need to be consumed zero times — or only once a week — by certain populations.

A four- or five-year-old child should eat only about four ounces of light tuna per week.

Children should avoid albacore tuna altogether, and women of childbearing age should consume no more than four ounces per week.