These fishes will do your body good…
1. Atlantic Mackerel
This species is a fast-growing fish, meaning it can repopulate easily and handle higher amounts of fishing. The gear used to catch Atlantic mackerel is efficient and not likely to cause major habitat destruction, another reason this guy is an ocean-friendly choice. This strong-flavored fish is high in heart-healthy omega-3s, a good source of protein—delivering 20 grams in a 3-ounce fillet—and pairs well with bold seasonings. Check out our recipe for Korean Grilled Mackerel flavored with rich Korean chile paste and fresh ginger.
2. Freshwater Coho Salmon
Freshwater coho salmon is the first—and only—farmed salmon to get a Super Green rating. Most other farmed salmon still falls on Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch “avoid” list for a few reasons. The majority of farms use open net pens in the ocean, where crowded salmon are easily infected with parasites, may be treated with antibiotics and can spread disease to wild fish. Also, it can take as much as three pounds of wild fish to raise one pound of salmon. An increasing number of farms, however, use closed freshwater pens (aka recirculating aquaculture systems), reducing the adverse environmental impacts. Look for “land-based” or “tank-based” at the fish counter. All salmon is a healthy source of omega-3s—one 3-ounce serving delivers 700 to 1,800 milligrams. Enjoy a Cajun-grilled salmon fillet on a crisp toasted bun with creamy avocado spread, in this recipe for Blackened Salmon Sandwich.
3. Sardines, Pacific (wild-caught)
The tiny, inexpensive sardine is making it onto many lists of superfoods and for good reason. It packs more omega-3s (1,950 mg!) per 3-ounce serving than salmon, tuna or just about any other food; it’s also one of the very, very few foods that’s naturally high in vitamin D. Many fish in the herring family are commonly called sardines. Quick to reproduce, Pacific sardines have rebounded from both overfishing and a natural collapse in the 1940s. Get a taste for sardines in our delicious Lemon-Garlic Sardine Fettuccine that even sardine skeptics might enjoy.
To give you an idea of how well managed Alaska’s salmon fishery is, consider this: biologists are posted at river mouths to count how many wild fish return to spawn. If the numbers begin to dwindle, the fishery is closed before it reaches its limits, as was done recently with some Chinook fisheries. This close monitoring, along with strict quotas and careful management of water quality, means Alaska’s wild-caught salmon are both healthier (they pack 1,210 mg of omega-3s per 3-ounce serving and carry few contaminants) and more sustainable than just about any other salmon fishery. Enjoy sustainable salmon today with Roasted Salmon & Butternut Squash Salad.
5. Salmon, Canned
There is a reason salmon makes this healthy fish list in many forms; it really is a nutritional powerhouse. In addition to its healthy omega-3 content, canned salmon is one of the best sources of nondairy calcium—with 3 ounces delivering 170 mg. Wild-caught salmon from Alaska is low in contaminants, including mercury and lead, and comes from well-managed fisheries. Canned wild salmon is typically sockeye or pink from Alaska. Buying salmon in a can also makes a more affordable way to get this healthy seafood in your diet.