It is lean, packed with protein, great for heart health, and can be deep fried.
Do I have you on the hook yet?

Fish is worth including in your diet. The American Heart Association recommends eating fish twice each week because fish has less saturated fats than other animal products, but still supplies crucial protein, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D, calcium, and riboflavin. Omega-3 fatty acids are nutrients that support brain and heart health. They act to lower blood pressure, and decrease risk of conditions such as depression, dementia, diabetes, or arthritis.

‘Fatty’ fish have higher amounts of Omega-3 than ‘non-fatty’ fish (more than 500 mg per three ounces of fish, or half of your recommended daily intake). Fatty fish include salmon, trout, herring, mackerel, anchovies, sardines, oysters, black sea bass, and Albacore tuna. Other types of fish are also healthy sources of protein, but provide less omega-3.

Fish are harvested from natural environments around the world and are subject to contaminants of that environment. Fish caught in Missouri may be exposed to mineral or chemical contaminants such as mercury, lead, PCB, or DDT among others. The Missouri Department of Health publishes an annual report guiding fisherman on contamination rates of our local water ways. Visit to review information on your local river or lake system. Despite the potential for contaminants, including fish does more for your health than excluding it.

Apply these simple tips to reduce contaminants when enjoying local fish.

-          Harvest young, small fish within the legal limits.

-          Cut filets off the bone and trim excess fat.

-          Cook fish in methods that allow the fat to drip away.

Enjoy delicious fish with these helpful cooking tips.

-          Use non-stick cook ware or bread fish as fish meat sticks to pans.

-          Cook fragile, lean fish such as cod with wet heat methods. Try baking, sous vide, steaming or deep frying.

-          Cook firm fatty fish such as tuna with dry heat methods such as grilling, pan frying or broiling.

-          A raw fish filet will need to cook for ~10 minutes for every 1 inch of thickness.

-          A frozen fish filet will need to cook for ~20 minutes for every 1 inch of thickness.

Join one of Extensions upcoming classes to practice your skills with fish. A new course, Freezer Meal Solutions will be offered this spring in St. James, MO. Contact Rachel Buenemann, the Nutrition and Health Specialist of the Phelps County Extension Center to learn more, phone number 573-458-6256,