Saturday, March 29, 2008

The Heart Loves Fish

The heart loves a fish diet. Maintaining a diet that includes two portions of fish a week leads to many benefits. The American Heart Association has this to say on the subject, "Fish is a good source of protein and doesn’t have the high saturated fat that fatty meat products do." The American Heart Association also notes that a diet rich in Omega-3 also reduces cardiovascular disease (CVD).

PUFA Newsletter, a quarterly newsletter for health professionals about polyunsaturated fatty acids, presents the findings of a September 2007 National Heart, Lungs and Blood Institute (NHLBI) report that has further details on the intersection of Omega-3 fatty acids, CVD and arrhythmias. The newsletter states:
The NHLBI report focused on arrhythmias, the major underlying cause of sudden cardiac death, which accounts for about 37% of all cardiovascular disease deaths. Some 80% to 90% of all sudden cardiac deaths stem from ventricular arrhythmias.
While the NHLBI noted the benefits of Omega-3 fatty acids in preventing arrhythmias, it would not commit to advancing public policy guidelines, instead calling for more research into the subject as reported at, the sister site to PUFA. Their refusal stems from three major studies of heart disease patients with implanted cardioverter defibrillators (ICD). Fats of Life states:

In these studies, patients who consumed fish oil experienced either no benefit or a greater likelihood of developing arrhythmia. . . Upon closer examination, however, it turns out that not all arrhythmias are alike. The type may depend on the patient’s clinical condition, such as chest pain or heart attack (myocardial infarction), and the cause of the arrhythmia.

Ralph Brennan's New Orleans Seafood Cookbook features recipes with seafood rich in Omega-3 such as trout (Trout Amandine or Trout Meuniere), tuna (Sesame-Seared Tuna) and oysters (refer to our blog entry on oysters, 3/18/08). Shrimp, crab and crawfish have smaller amounts of Omega-3. Help your heart and your appetite by preparing one of the dishes presented in Ralph Brennan's New Orleans Seafood Cookbook.

SOURCE: "American Heart Association"
SOURCE: "PUFA Newsletter" 03/08
SOURCE: "Fats of Life" 03/08
photo courtesy of aussiegall, used under this Creative Commons license

No comments: