Fatty fish should be incorporated in a healthy diet, so they say. This is great, We can get salmon at Sainsbury's from as little as £4.25/unit. But the sad truth is, like most meat, not all salmon is created equally. Today, a lot of the salmon we eat isn’t caught in the wild, but bred in fish farms.
Let's see what the differences are:
Wild salmon is caught in the wild, in its natural environment… oceans, rivers and lakes.
But half of the salmon sold worldwide comes from so-called fish farms.
Whereas wild salmon eats other organisms found in its natural environment, farmed salmon is given a processed high-fat feed in order to produce larger fish.
See nutrition information below:
Farmed salmon is much higher in fat… it contains slightly more Omega-3s, much more Omega-6 fatty acids and 3 times the amount of saturated fat. It also contains 46% more calories mostly from fat.
Farmed salmon also contains some Vitamin C, which is added to the feed.
Conversely, wild salmon is higher in minerals, including potassium, zinc and iron.
Difference between the Fat types:
There are two main types of polyunsaturated fats… Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids.
Both omega-6s and omega-3s play crucial roles throughout our body including: growth and development, brain functioning, skin health, hair growth, metabolism, reproductive system health and cell membrane integrity. This is why they are called 'essential' fatty acids (EFAs)
Most people today are eating too much Omega-6 (can be found in meat and other animal products), and the delicate balance between these two types of fatty acids is heavily distorted towards Omega-6.
Many scientists have speculated that this can drive increased inflammation and may play a role in the pandemics of chronic diseases like heart disease and others.
Here’s where it gets interesting… farmed salmon has three times the total fat of wild salmon, but a large part of these fats are Omega-6 fatty acids.
For this reason, the Omega 6: Omega 3 is about three times higher in farmed salmon, compared to wild.
However… I don’t really think this is a cause for concern. Even though farmed salmon contains Omega-6, the O6:O3 ratio is still excellent (at 1:3-4), it’s just less excellent than that in wild salmon, which is at 1:10.
The real concern though is that farmed salmon is much higher in contaminants. These contaminants (Polychlorinated biphenyl-PCB) are strongly associated with cancer and various other health problems. One study investigated over 700 salmon samples from around the world and found that on average, the PCB concentrations in farmed salmon were eight times higher than in wild salmon.
So conclusion of this post: if you can afford eating wild salmon, do that, and minimise the consumption of farmed salmon.
An extra tip if you like fish in general: You will naturally accumulate heavy metal through fish in your body. A few tips to remove these:
- Eat lots of garlic
-Start your day with a glass of apple cider vinegar mixed into hot water
-Eating foods like onion, banana, asparagous help prepare your body to facilitate detoxification much more quickly.
- Eat Foods That Contain Pectin – Grapefruit, lemon, and lime all contain pectin throughout their rinds. Once ingested, this compound is transformed into modified citrus pectin (MCP), which has shown promise to detox heavy metals in clinical trials. Other delicious sources of this incredible compound are bananas, okra, apples, cabbage, beets, carrots, citrus fruits (pectin is present within the white centers), and grapes.
-Drink plenty of purified water daily
And last but not least, train and sweat! :)