Salmon | Superfood of the Month
Salmon Description & Health Benefits
- Salmon belongs to the Salmonidae family which also includes the various trout species. Multiple species of salmon exist and are commonly referred to as Pacific or Atlantic salmon. Pacific salmon varieties most commonly found in grocery stores include king, sockeye, coho, pink, and chum. Wild Atlantic salmon are endangered in the U.S., so when purchasing Atlantic salmon you are most likely purchasing farmed salmon which is also widely available at your local grocer.
- Salmon in an excellent source of niacin, vitamin B12, phosphorus, selenium, and omega 3 fatty acids. It is a good source of thiamin, vitamin B6, and potassium.
- Niacin is important in converting food to energy and also assists with the functioning of the digestive system, skin, and nerve performance.
- Vitamin B12 is only found in animal products and is required for red blood cell formation which helps to deliver oxygen throughout the body.
- Phosphorus supports bone and teeth formation and is needed to make protein for growth, maintenance, and repair of cells and tissues.
- Selenium plays a crucial role in reproduction, thyroid health, and creation of DNA.
- Omega 3 fatty acids are vital for brain function including memory, behavior, and performance. They may also reduce risk of heart disease, certain cancers and arthritis.
- Thiamin assists the body by converting the carbohydrate we eat (grains, fruits, vegetables) into energy. Energy is provided to the brain, nervous system, and body.
- Vitamin B6 is involved in brain development during pregnancy and infancy and promotes immune function.
- Potassium aids nerve and muscle communication and regulates minerals and fluids in the body’s cells.
Purchasing, Selecting, Storing, and Preparing
- Purchase fresh salmon that appears moist and vibrant in color, from deep red to bright pink. The salmon eyes should be bright and clear. Avoid fresh salmon that smells fishy, has brown spots on the flesh and has skin that is curling up. Also avoid salmon with bruised or gaping skin where it begins to separate on the cut edges. Avoid purchasing frozen salmon which has frost or ice crystals inside of the packaging. This is a sign that the fish has been thawed and refrozen.
- Fresh salmon should be used within 1-2 days for best quality and taste. Store in the refrigerator until use.
- Prepare frozen salmon by letting it thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
- Prepare by grilling, sautéing, or broiling.
- For sustainable fish sources for you and your family, check out the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch or the Environmental Defense Fund — seafoodwatch.org and seafood.edf.org.
3 oz. pink salmon, cooked, dry heat
Calories: 130 | Protein: 20.89 g | Fat: 4.49 g | Carbohydrate: 0.0 g | Fiber: 0.0 g | Calcium: 7.0 mg | Magnesium: 27 mg |Potassium: 373 mg | Vitamin C: 0.0 mg | Folate: 4.0 μg | Vitamin A: 0.0 IU