There are many fish in the sea, and who doesn’t like having options? Seafood is a beloved delicacy and for good reason. Azzopardi Fisheries – popular providers of fresh fish in Malta – have compiled a list of the health benefits of seafood. And as they’re backed by research, there’s nothing fishy about the following facts!
As squid, better known as calamari, holds an abundance of antioxidants which protect us from free radicals (hazardous molecules) we are exposed to daily, it can help prevent and fight cancer. Moreover, it is one of the few shellfish that is low in carbohydrates and can even lower cholesterol levels. Tuck in!
Oysters are delicious molluscs that provide the human body with a number of unique nutrients and minerals that have great health benefits. These include, among many others: boosting metabolic activity (which aids in weight loss), increasing tissue repair and growth, lowering cholesterol levels, reducing blood pressure, improving immune functions and aiding in wound healing.
Shrimps are a low-fat source of protein, which is an essential dietary component needed to build and repair tissues. However, the most important benefit of shrimp is the multitude of vitamins (A, E, B6 and even vitamin B12) and nutrients it contains, namely: iron, calcium, sodium, phosphorus, zinc, magnesium and potassium.
Prawns are a good source of unsaturated fat, which when eaten in place of saturated fats, can help improve your blood cholesterol levels. Prawns are also a good source of omega-3 fatty acids which are known to reduce inflammation and your risk of heart disease, cancer, arthritis, as well as help with brain function.
Octopus is great because it contains very low amounts of saturated fats, which makes it a great option for individuals trying to lose weight.
Health benefits of Omega-3 fatty acids
When it comes to fat, there’s one type you don’t want to cut back on: Omega-3 fatty acids, which are a major part of the health benefits of seafood. These are essential fatty acids our bodies need but don’t produce, and are primarily found in fish. Here are some facts about them:
It promotes healthy skin: Your skin’s natural glow is affected more by what you eat than the creams you apply to it. And not only does eating seafood regularly enough help preserve moisture in the skin, the omega-3 fatty acids also serve as protection against the sun’s UV rays.
It helps maintains eyesight: Fish and shellfish not only boost your night vision, but can also help keep the eyes bright. Ophthalmology studies also suggest that those who consume omega-3 fatty acids are less likely to suffer from macular degeneration – a disease that can result in the loss of vision.
Yield the benefits of the fruits of the sea! Now that you have read up on the amazing health benefits of seafood, head over to Azzopardi Fisheries in St. Paul’s Bay. From crustaceans to molluscs, you will find a great selection of fresh fish and seafood in Malta.
Fish is packed with important nutrients which are incredibly important for our body and brain, making it among the healthiest foods on the planet. With 30 years of experience in the fishing industry, Azzopardi Fisheries share 5 of the many health benefits fish provides:
1. Fish is high in essential nutrients
Generally speaking, all types of fish are healthy – they are high in many nutrients including high-quality protein, iodine and various vitamins and minerals that most people are deficient in. However, fatty types of fish such as salmon, trout and tuna are considered the healthiest as these fatty acids are crucial for optimal functioning of the body and brain.
2. Fish may lower the risk of heart attacks and strokes
Eating at least one serving of fish per week has been linked to reduced risk of heart attacks and strokes, two of the world’s biggest killers and causes of premature death. Research shows that fish is among the best foods you can eat for a healthy heart, with fatty types of fish being even more beneficial due to their high amount of omega-3 fatty acids.
3. Fish contains nutrients that are crucial during development
Omega-3 fatty acids are absolutely essential for growth, particularly for development of the brain and eyes. It is recommended that expecting and nursing mothers eat enough omega-3s while staying away from fish that is high in mercury.
4. Fish may protect the brain from age-related deterioration
Grey matter is the major functional tissue in the brain responsible for controlling memory and regulating emotion, and studies show that people who eat fish on a regular basis have more grey matter in these brain centres. Therefore, regular fish consumption is linked to reduced decline in brain function in old age, which is a common part of the ageing process.
5. Fish is the only good dietary source of Vitamin D
Fatty fish and fish products are by far the best source of vitamin D; an important nutrient that promotes bone growth, which over 40% of people may be deficient in. Of all the fish, salmon is the one that contains the highest amount of vitamin D, with a 113-gram serving of it containing around 100% of the recommended intake.
So if you’d like to reap some of these health benefits fish provides, make sure you’re incorporating fish into your diet! Azzopardi fisheries in St. Paul’s Bay have the widest range of fresh fish and seafood in Malta.
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If you’re a budding seafood chef, knowing whether a piece of fish is fresh or not is vital if you want to optimise your cooking skills. Fortunately, the signs are very easy to recognise once you get to know them. Here are a few tips we’ve listed to help you out.
Something smells fishy…
The scent should be mild and pleasant and not too sour or strong. Avoid fish that have an overpowering odour or a nasty stink. Fresh fish normally smell a bit like clean water with a touch of brine that is vaguely reminiscent of cucumber.
Check the eyes and gills
Skip over any fish that have dull or cloudy eyes, or that are sunken into its head. Fresh fish have eyes that are bright and shiny with a clear shine to them. Bear in mind that certain fish like mackerel or kingfish are quickly put in ice after being harvested, so that will affect the clarity of their eyes even while fresh. If unsure, ask a nearby expert for advice.
As for the gills, ensure that they’re a rich red or bright pink in colour. Older fish generally have gills that are light brown and faded. It’s also a good sign if they’re not too slimy or too dry but just slightly wet.
Look at the flesh
Examine the skin – the shinier it is, the fresher the fish will be. It should have a metallic and clean gleam to it without any cracks or scales falling off. A fresh fish should have a tight and firm surface with a bouncy feel to it. Ask the shop attendant or fishmonger to see whether you can touch it in order to be sure of the texture.
How to store fresh fish at home
1. Wash the fish by running it under cold water and dry it with a paper towel.
2. Rewrap it in its packing paper but not as tightly.
3. Before putting it in the refrigerator straight away, fill up a bowl with ice.
4. Place the fish (still wrapped in paper) right on top of the ice.
5. Cover the bowl with everything inside and put it right at the back of the fridge (this is the coldest area).
6. Store for a maximum of 48 hours.
7. If freezing, follow the same procedure. However, place the fish inside a freezer bag or container after washing it (don’t keep it wrapped in paper). Set the temperature to 0 degrees or below. Freeze for a maximum of 2 weeks.
Make your way over to Azzopardi Fisheries in St. Paul’s Bay, one of the best places to find fresh fish in Malta. Our assistants will be more than happy to offer their expertise if you need any help.
Come and view our display of rock fish, grouper, red mullet as well as an assorted and fresh collection of shellfish.