Thursday, September 04, 2014

Fish really is brain food and more!

Cook Your Fish Right
Eating a piece of baked or broiled fish -- any fish -- once a week boosts brain health, according to new research by doctors at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. Regular fish consumers were also found to be better educated about healthier lifestyles.

Feds Get in on the Act
FDA and EPA Issue Draft Updated Advice for Fish Consumption
Emerging science indicates that limiting or avoiding fish during pregnancy and early childhood can mean missing out on these important nutrients that have a positive impact on growth and development before birth, in early infancy for breastfed infants, and in childhood. As a result, FDA and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are encouraging pregnant women, those who might become pregnant, breastfeeding mothers, and young children to eat more fish—and to eat a variety of fish lower in mercury. Here’s how:

  • Eat 8 to 12 Ounces of Fish/Shellfish Per Week. (That’s 2 or 3 servings of fish a week.)
  • Give young children 2 to 3 servings of fish a week with the portion right for the child’s age and calorie needs
  • Choose Fish That Are Lower in Mercury.Many of the most commonly eaten fish are lower in mercury, such as salmon, shrimp, pollock, tuna (light canned), tilapia, catfish and cod.
  • Avoid 4 Types of Fish: tilefish from the Gulf of Mexico, shark, swordfish and king mackerel. These fish are highest in mercury. Limit white (albacore) tuna to 6 ounces a week.
  • Pay attention to fish advisories when eating fish you or others have caught from streams, rivers, and lakes, on those bodies of water. If advice isn’t available, adults should limit consumption of these fish to 6 ounces a week and young children to 1 to 3 ounces a week, and not eat other fish that week.

Deciphering How Omega-3's Function in the Brain
Consuming oils with high omega-3s is beneficial for the health because their presence makes the membranes more malleable and therefore more sensitive to deformation and fission by proteins. The results, published August 8th in Science, help explain why the abundance of these lipids in the brain represent a major advantage for cognitive function.

Considering that the body cannot synthesize them and that they can only be supplied by a suitable diet (rich in oily fish, etc.), it seems important to continue this work to understand the link between the functions performed by these lipids in the neuronal membrane and their health benefits.

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