Think frozen foods are second best? It is true that most freezer meals are packed with sodium and frozen desserts are off-limits for diabetics. But believe it or not, there is a frozen food that can actually help manage diabetes… fish!
Did you know the majority of the fresh filets on ice at your local supermarket have been previously frozen? Most fish are frozen immediately after being caught, and then shipped frozen to supermarkets. The seafood department then thaws the fish and presents the filets beautifully on ice. If you don’t ask if the fish has been previously frozen, you’d likely never know.
Those ‘fresh’ fish filets in the seafood case can sell for upwards of $20 per pound. A package of six 6 oz. filets in the freezer section costs about the same. That’s twice the amount of fish for the same $20 – just because you bought it frozen!
Frozen or fresh, be cautious of the type of fish you purchase. The health benefits we’re about to discuss can be found with wild-caught fish. Benefits decrease and potential health dangers increase when you choose farm-raised varieties.
Fish is an excellent addition to any diet, but especially for those who are working to manage blood sugar. Salmon is particularly fantastic for several reasons. It’s incredible healthy fat content is a great place to start.
Heart disease is the number one cause of death in the United States, killing over 600,000 people every year. What you may not know is that individuals are three times more likely to die from lack of healthy fats than from excess intake of saturated fats.
New research from the American Heart Association has shown that replacing unhealthy dietary fats with healthy ones can reduce cholesterol levels and heart disease risk as much as prescription statins. Amazing!
A diet rich in healthy fats results in lower cholesterol, decreased risk of heart failure, decreased risk of stroke, and lower blood pressure. Good fats also reduce risk of heart disease, obesity and type II diabetes complications.
According to several studies, it is not the amount of fat you eat that affects health, it is the type of fat. It is crucial to choose the right healthy fats in order to reap these benefits. Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats are two ‘good’ fats. The omega-3 fatty acids found in salmon are ideal for heart health, as well as, a better brain.
Salmon is a true brain food! Those omega-3 fatty acids keep your brain running in tip-top shape, improving cognition, memory, and focus.
Feeling energized yet? Salmon is full of vitamins B6 and B12. Vitamin B12 is used by the body for energy. Vitamin B6 is essential to the production of melatonin, the hormone that regulates sleeping and waking cycles. Omega-3 fatty acids have also been linked with improving symptoms of mood disorders.
How about benefits for blood sugar? Aside from the healthy fat content, the flesh of oily fish like salmon, tuna, and mackerel naturally contains vitamin D. According to research, higher levels of vitamin D in the blood were linked to lower risk of type II diabetes.
Researchers suggest the vitamin D receptors in cells may be responsible. Pancreatic beta cells have vitamin D receptors. When vitamin D is present, it stimulates those receptors and the pancreas produces more insulin. The more vitamin D available for the cells to receive, the better the pancreas can be stimulated to produce insulin.
Research like this is revealing just how important vitamin D is for diabetics. The vitamin D found in fatty fish can help keep blood sugar under control.
There you have it! Fish packs an incredible nutritious punch – and the frozen variety is nothing to turn your nose up to. Check out these 25 Super Salmon Recipes and get your fish on!