The season for wild salmon, mainly fished in Alaska and on the Pacific coast, is just getting started and will continue through the summer. Salmon contains healthy fats, known as omega-3s, in the form of DHA and EPA which are the most beneficial for the heart, brain, eyes and triglycerides. Salmon is also an excellent source of high-quality protein, and is high in vitamin D and low in calories, saturated fat and cholesterol.
But if this desirable nutrient profile isn’t enough to get salmon on your plate, maybe this fact will. Of the healthiest populations in the world, many share a common factor – a diet rich in DHA and EPA from fish, such as salmon, mackerel and tuna.
As a Hy-Vee dietitian, I am constantly educating my customers about the benefits of incorporating fish, such as salmon, in their diets at least twice a week. So it was exciting to have recently had an Alaskan fisherman, who operates a fish farm along Bristol Bay, visit Hy-Vee to present how his family’s business not only catch but also process the fish themselves – delivering the salmon they like to say “from fisher to fork.”
I also just returned from a weekend in the Pacific Northwest where I learned first-hand about fishing for salmon from the local fishermen at the fish markets in Seattle. For a delicious treat, the fishermen proudly handed out samples of their freshest salmon – which my mom would say “tastes better than candy.” (She also said this about fresh green beans from the garden to get my siblings and me to eat them when we were little.)
One of the most common things I hear my customers say is they know salmon is good for them, but they don’t know how to prepare it. Salmon tastes great with lemon, dill or a simple seasoned salt, or topped with fruit salsas, and can be easily prepared and incorporated into a meal by cubing for kabobs or by searing, grilling, smoking, baking or broiling.
Salmon leftovers can be combined with leafy greens and vegetables for a delicious salad, or made into salmon burgers with Greek yogurt and vegetables.
For a complete guide to selecting and preparing your salmon, check out our Hy-Vee Health Notes segment at Hy-Vee.com. Most important tip: Don’t overcook the salmon!
For the record, the salmon really did taste better than candy and luckily we have access to great-tasting salmon right here in the Midwest as well. So, fill your fork with fish and cheers to good health!
Amanda Devereaux, RD, LD; Visit me at your West Lakes Hy-Vee; contact me at email@example.com