Orlando, Fla. (September 29, 2005) Not all fats are created equal...especially since research consistently suggests that Omego-3 fatty acids from fish and shellfish boost heart health. According to the American Heart Association, Omega-3s benefit people with healthy hearts as well as those with heightened risk of cardiovascular disease.
Essential to your health
There’s a reason why Omega-3s are called Essential Fatty Acids. They have important roles in maintaining a healthy heart and are necessary for cell development and growth. Since the human body cannot manufacture Omega-3s, they must be supplied through the diet. For optimum heart health, the American Heart Association recommends eating fish, and particularly fish high in Omega-3s, such as salmon, lake trout, herring, sardines, mackerel and albacore tuna, at least two times a week. Fish is a good source of protein and does not have the high saturated fat that meat products contain.
Omega-3s from fish and seafood seem to protect against heart disease in several ways, including:
• Making the blood less likely to form clots
• Preventing heart beat abnormalities
• Lowering high levels of triglycerides (a type of fat in the blood that can increase the risk of heart attacks when its levels are too high)
Baking, broiling, grilling, poaching, steaming, microwaving and sautéing in little or no fat are the preferred cooking methods.
African Americans and Hispanics
Heart disease continues to strike a disproportionate number of African Americans and Hispanics. About 40 percent of African American men and women suffer from some form of the disease, compared to 30 percent of white men and 24 percent of white women. For a variety of reasons, African Americans also are more likely to die from the disease than whites. And while Hispanics die from heart disease at a lower rate than whites, Mexican American women are diagnosed with heart disease more frequently than white females.
For people of all races and ethnic backgrounds who want to stay in good shape, eating plenty of fish and shellfish is part of a healthy diet that includes other wholesome foods and plenty of fruits and vegetables.
Seafood Recipe for at-home cooking:
Grilled Salmon with Vinaigrette and Asparagus
(Courtesy of Red Lobster)
Ingredients (makes 4 servings):
4 8-10 oz. pieces of fresh salmon fillets, skinless
1/2 cup canola oil
McCormick’s Season All
1 lb. fresh asparagus spears, medium size
Sun-Dried Tomato Basil Vinaigrette (see recipe below)
4 portions of your favorite rice recipe (Red Lobster suggests a wild/white rice blend)
Sun-Dried Tomato Basil Vinaigrette Recipe:
6 oz. canola oil
2 oz. red wine vinegar
2 oz. sun-dried tomatoes in oil, finely chopped
1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped
2 tbsp. red onion, diced
1 tsp. fresh garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Lightly brush both sides of fillets with oil and season with McCormick’s Season All.
2. Pre-heat your grill to medium-high heat. When hot, grill the fish for 4-5 minutes until well markets.
3. Turn the salmon fillets over and continue grilling another 5-6 minutes or until your fresh fish preference is reached.
1. Measuring from the tip, cut the stems off the asparagus about 5” down. Discard the stems.
2. Coat the asparagus in 3 tbsp. oil, adding salt and pepper to taste.
3. Grill the asparagus for about 1 minute, then roll and grill for another minute (or until tender).
Sun-Dried Tomato Basil Vinaigrette (makes 8 ounces):
1. In a large bowl, mix together using a wire whip the canola oil, red wine vinegar, chopped sun-dried tomatoes, fresh basil, red onions and minced garlic. The ingredients should be mixed until incorporated.
2. Whip in salt and pepper to taste.
3. Warm the vinaigrette slightly.
For a stunning presentation:
1. Place a portion of rice in the center of a plate, followed by the grilled salmon.
2. Then layer the asparagus next to the fish and rice.
3. Pick two pieces of asparagus and criss-cross them over the fish.
4. Spoon approximately two ounces of the warm vinaigrette over the salmon.
5. Serve with a lemon wedge.
Wine Pairing Recommendation:
A Chardonnay is a great accompaniment to this preparation.