According to a study published in the journal Stroke, individuals who consume fish on a few occasions weekly may face a lower risk of suffering a stroke compared to people who eat little fish or do not eat it at all.
Reuters reported that, “Investigators came to that conclusion after analyzing data from 15 different studies.”
“I think overall, fish does provide a beneficial package of nutrients, in particular the omega-3s, that could explain this lower risk,” said Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian, a Harvard School of Public Health epidemiologist whose research was included in the analysis.
“A lot of the evidence comes together suggesting that about two to three servings per week is enough to get the benefit.”
But the research can’t prove that adding more NON-FRIED fish to your diet will keep you from having a stroke.
People who eat a lot of fish, Mozaffarian told Reuters Health, “could have healthier diets in other ways, people could exercise more, people could have better education that could lead them to see their doctors more.”
All of those things might decrease their risk of stroke.
Still, he added, most studies have tried to take those other health and nutrition factors into account to isolate the effects of fish as much as possible — and they suggest a cause-and-effect relationship.
It’s likely, Mozaffarian said, that people who start out eating no fish or very little probably have the most to gain by putting it on their plate more often. “You get a lot of bang for your buck when you go from low intake to moderate, a few servings per week,” he said.
After that, the benefit from each extra serving probably goes down.
Fatty fish such as salmon and herring are especially high in omega-3s. The American Heart Association recommends at least two servings of fatty fish in particular each week.