The American Heart Association advises that fish can be an excellent source of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Now, a new study reveals that the way a fish is prepared can affect how many of these good fats an individual consumes.
The study was led by Lixin Meng of the University of Hawaii at Manoa and presented at this year’s AHA Scientific Sessions. Researchers examined the varying omega-3 levels of a large group of individuals living in Los Angeles between 1993 and 1996.
The team tracked their fish consumption by quantifying and measuring the amount of fish consumed and manners in which it was prepared. They also took into account soy products with plant-based omega-3 acids—items like soy, tofu and shoyu.
Men who ate the most omega-3 per day—3.3 grams—decreased their risk of cardiovascular disease by 23 percent. The team also learned that women should avoid salted and dried fish because of its heavy sodium content.
Meng explained that overall "it appears that boiling or baking fish with low-sodium soy sauce (shoyu) and tofu is beneficial, while eating fried, salted or dried fish is not."