Katherine’s Diet Tip #3: Eat Salmon to Lose Weight!

Photo by California Strawberry Commission

Photo by California Strawberry Commission

Recent studies show that omega-3 fatty acids can reduce body weight gain and chronic inflammation through the improvement of the bacteria in your gastrointestinal tract (the microbiota).

The authors of this new study published in the International Journal of Obesity found feeding your child salmon may prevent obesity later in life, too. But how? The authors theorize the reason is that these increased tissue levels of omega-3 fatty acids [found in abundance in salmon, herring, anchovies and sardines], may prevent antibiotic-induced alteration in gut microbiota in children, and obesity later in life.

“Elevated tissue levels of omega-3 fatty acids significantly reduce body weight gain and the severity of insulin resistance, fatty liver and dyslipidemia [high cholesterol] resulting from early life exposure to ezithromycin [an antibiotic],” said the authors.

These results makes sense to me for at least two reasons:

It’s already been established that babies who are breast fed – and breast milk is loaded with probiotics – are less likely to be overweight later in life. Also, probiotics (for instance, found in yogurt) improve the health of the microbiota. So, apparently, an improvement in the microbiota is one reason why probiotics may help manage weight in children through their lifespan. This study showed that probiotics can help undo the harm to the gastrointestinal tract caused by early antibiotic use. Learn more about probiotics and the microbiota

Omega-3 fatty acids are known for their anti-inflammatory properties. They have been hailed for decreasing heart disease risk, cancer risk, cognitive decline, Alzheimer’s Disease -and now – increase of healthy gut bacteria and obesity.  Learn more about omega-3 fatty acids

So, eat your salmon – or any fatty fish – to lose weight! The American Heart Association recommends 12 ounces per week.

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