10 Surprising Health Benefits of Sardines | Nutritional Benefits

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We all know that fish is on the "healthy foods" list. You might have your own personal favorite fish dish -salmon is immensely popular, but another type of healthy, high-protein fish that can often be overlooked is sardines.
Fish is a well-known "brain food", meaning that eating fish can nourish and boost your brain health. Fish is also anti-inflammatory and good for heart health, and contains plenty of minerals and nutrients. It's best to eat oily, fatty fish, like salmon, mackerel, trout, and yes, sardines. This is because oily fish is rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
Like most foods, however, how you eat your fish is just as important as what you eat. Battered fish is clearly not going to be as healthy as baked fish. If you choose to add extras to your fish meal, you should think about what you're adding, and whether it'll detract from the nutritious part of your meal.
Essentially, fish should be a staple part of a balanced diet, just like meat and vegetables. However, if you don't eat fish, you can take omega-3 fish oil supplements. Of course, it's much healthier and simpler to get your nutrients directly from the food you eat. That's why you should eat sardines.
If you've decided to add sardines to your diet, you're in for a treat. You can find all types of sardines, from fresh to canned.
Sardines are more versatile than other types of fish, lending themselves to all kinds of dishes - including breakfast. On top of that, sardines are an excellently healthy choice of food.
Let’s take a look at the top 10 health benefits of sardines -
1. High in Protein
Sardines are high-protein foods. Protein can be found in most types of fish, meat, fruit, and vegetables, and it's relatively easy to get your daily amount of protein.
Three ounces of sardines can contain up to 23 grams of protein.
2. Rich in Vitamins and Minerals
Getting our daily quota of vitamins and minerals isn't always easy. Sardines contain vitamin D, vitamin B12, selenium, and calcium, as well as omega-3 fatty acids.
Vitamins D and B12 are especially important, as these are common vitamin deficiencies. You can also find iron and copper in sardines.
3. High in Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are found in fish and seafood. Omega 3 is one of the most well-known vitamin supplements and is found naturally in oily fish.
Omega 3 fatty acids are excellent for heart and bone health, and also boost the immune system. The simplest, most natural way to get enough omega 3 fatty acids is by eating fish like sardines every week.
4. Makes You Feel Full
Some foods offer only "empty calories", meaning that they're high-fat and high in calories, but leave you feeling hungry again soon after. Sardines make you feel full and satisfied after a meal. This feeling of fullness helps to reduce cravings and the desire to snack later on.
Eating meals that leave you feeling full is the best way to avoid eating fatty, sugary foods between meals. If you're trying to lose weight, choose foods that curb the appetite - like sardines.
5. Reduces Inflammation
Inflammation causes many diseases, including cancers, heart disease, high blood pressure, and much more. Certain foods have an inflammatory effect on human health, mostly sugary foods and processed foods. However, other foods, like sardines, work to reduce the inflammation in your body.
Eating sardines on a regular basis can fight against inflammation. You can also pair sardines with other anti-inflammatory foods, like turmeric.
Sardines also have anti-cancer properties, which may be linked to their role as an anti-inflammatory. This is likely due to the high levels of vitamin D and calcium found in sardines.
6. Promotes Good Brain Function
Oily fish is known as "brain food" for a reason. 60% of the brain is made up of fat. The fat content in oily fish like sardines, coupled with the vitamins, minerals, and anti-inflammatory properties likely go a long way to keeping the brain supple and healthy.
7. Good for Eye Health
Sardines and other oily fish can help prevent the development of age-related macular degeneration. This is a degenerative condition mostly seen in people over the age of 50. Macular and retinal degeneration sometimes results in eventual blindness, and certainly results in vision loss.
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