Freshwater fish in Europe is a source of nutrition that has many health benefits. In fact, this freshwater fish is claimed to be healthier because it lives in reservoirs, rivers, lakes or ponds that have less pollution than sea fish.
Come on, get to know the benefits, types and nutritional content of freshwater fish, as well as the possible risks of consuming them in this article.
Benefits of freshwater fish for body health
Basically, fish is the healthiest type of food because it contains important nutrients, such as protein, vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids.
The nutritional content of freshwater fish and seawater fish is different. Generally, freshwater fish contain higher levels of calcium and unsaturated fatty acids than seawater fish.
The following are the benefits of freshwater fish for health:
1. Maintain heart health
The first benefit of freshwater fish is maintaining heart health, it is even considered one of the best foods for the heart.
Researchers believe that freshwater fish, which contain omega-3 fatty acids, are foods that are good for the heart.
A study showed that people who eat fish regularly have a lower risk of heart attack, stroke and death from heart disease.
2. Improve brain health
Decreased brain function is actually a normal thing as you get older. However, you can minimize the risk by eating healthy foods, such as freshwater fish.
Ada study showed that people who ate more fish had a slower rate of mental and brain decline.
3. Supports baby growth and development
Saltwater fish such as salmon are famous for their benefits for baby development.
However, freshwater fish, such as snakehead fish, catfish or tilapia are also good for baby’s growth and development because they are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
Omega 3 fatty acids or DHA are very important for the development of the baby’s brain, eyes and nervous system. Apart from that, DHA can also prevent premature birth for pregnant women.
4. Prevent and overcome depression
Depression can happen to anyone. There are many ways you can treat depression, one of which is by consuming freshwater fish. How come?
Study have found that people who eat fish regularly have a lower risk of depression than those who don’t eat fish regularly.
Coupled with the results of trials that omega 3 fatty acids contained in freshwater fish can increase the effectiveness of antidepressant drugs.
5. Reduces the risk of autoimmune diseases
Autoimmune diseases occur when the body’s immune system attacks healthy body tissue. Several studies link the benefits of freshwater fish to a reduced risk of autoimmune disease.
The reason is because it contains omega 3 acids or fish oil.
Types of freshwater fish and their nutritional content
Almost identical to sea foodfreshwater fish have high protein content and low fat.
Apart from that, freshwater fish are also rich in nutrients, such as vitamins, minerals, omega-3 and omega-6 which are good for preventing chronic diseases and improving health.
Below are several types of freshwater fish and their nutritional content that could be your choice:
They fish (tilapia) is a freshwater fish that is quite popular and is often used as a main dish.
Apart from being cheap, tilapia is also a good source of protein and low in calories and fat.
The benefits of tilapia fish come from its various nutritional contents, such as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, B vitamins, and minerals, such as phosphorus, selenium and potassium.
2. Rainbow trout
Rainbow trout (rainbow trout) is one of the freshwater fish that is widely cultivated.
Trout is known to be a good source of protein and vitamin B12 for the body.
Apart from cultivation, this fish is also found in many rivers.
Who doesn’t know catfish, a freshwater fish that is a favorite of many people because it tastes delicious and also has rich nutritional content.
Catfish is rich in protein, omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, vitamin B12, and several minerals, such as selenium, phosphorus, thiamine, and potassium.
Another type of freshwater fish that is synonymous with Indonesian dishes, namely snakehead fish.
Snakehead fish has a high protein content, especially albumin and amino acids, as well as essential fatty acids.
Snakehead fish is also rich in vitamins and minerals, especially zinc, which is needed to maintain the immune system.
With this nutritional content, snakehead fish has been clinically tested as a supplement and medicine.
Basa fish or swai fish is a type of freshwater white fish native to Southeast Asia. This fish is still the same species as catfish.
Just like other types of freshwater fish, basa fish is rich in protein, low in calories and omega-3 fatty acids.
Eels are included in the category of freshwater fish which are also quite popular as various dishes in Europe and even Japan. The benefits of eel include its complete protein content and essential and non-essential amino acid derivatives.
Journal Food Science and Nutrition stated that eels also contain omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin A, vitamin B12 and high levels of calcium which are good for supporting body health.
Another type of freshwater fish that is popular in Europe is goldfish. Not only popular as an Indonesian dish, goldfish (carp) is also quite popular to cultivate.
Not only delicious, carp meat is a high source of protein. Goldfish also contain vitamin B12, the mineral phosphorus, and fatty acids which are beneficial for the body.
However, make sure you are careful when consuming it so as not to swallow fish spines. The reason is, this fish has quite a lot of spines.
Freshwater pomfret fish is also very popular among Indonesian people and is cultivated.
Pomfret fish also contains nutrients including protein, iron, phosphorus and calcium which are good for growth, overcoming anemia and supporting health.
In the journal International Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Studies explained that the nutritional value of pomfret fish can last longer after the cooking process compared to hilsa fish (a type of sea fish).
9. Yellow snapper
Yellow snapper (yellow perch) is a freshwater fish that usually lives in lakes. Like other fish, yellow snapper also has a high protein and amino acid content, and is low in fat.
Yellow snapper is also rich in omega-3, vitamin B complex and vitamin C which are good for improving the body’s metabolism and preventing various infectious and degenerative diseases.
Cod is a freshwater fish with white flesh and a mild taste. This fish is rich in protein, B vitamins, and minerals such as selenium and phosphorus.
Not only does the meat contain nutrients, cod liver oil is also rich in vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids.
That is why cod liver oil supplement products are very popular for maintaining health.
11. Atlantic salmon
Atlantic salmon is a type of freshwater fish that is rich in benefits. Similar to sea salmon, Atlantic salmon also contains nutrients, such as protein, omega-3, omega-6, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and zinc.
In contrast to sea salmon, farmed salmon has greater nutritional value, especially omega-3 content.
In a study Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dieteticsconsuming Atlantic salmon twice a week can increase omega-3 levels in the blood and can reduce the risk of heart and blood vessel disease.
Are there any dangers to consuming freshwater fish?
With the content of various nutrients in it, consuming freshwater fish is very good for health.
However, consuming fish is certainly not free from threatening health dangers.
Even though it is still within tolerance limits and may be lower than sea fish, the possibility of industrial waste contamination such as mercury still exists in freshwater fish. These compounds can accumulate and are toxic to the body.
Apart from industrial waste contamination, freshwater fish are also susceptible to chemical contamination. This is because most freshwater fish farms use special drugs to control pathogens and parasites in cultivation ponds.
However, you don’t need to worry, in a study explained that The benefits of freshwater fish outweigh the health risks they pose. To minimize health risks, make sure the freshwater fish you consume is cooked perfectly and eat enough portions.
What you need to be careful about is that for some people, freshwater fish can also trigger allergies. So, if you have a fish allergy, you should be careful, OK?
Don’t forget to choose fresh, good quality freshwater fish and wash them properly to prevent the risk of food poisoning.