Most people who love anchovies learned to appreciate them at a very young age or found out at a later stage in life that these little fish are packed with important nutrients. In general, fish provide quite a few health benefits, but the strong odor of anchovies tends to sway people from trying them. However, once the individual tries out a few of the more popular recipes that include anchovies, their ideas about these little fish takes a most positive turn.
The health benefits of anchovies include the absorption of several key nutrients including vitamins and minerals. The fatty acids in anchovies serve as a healthy preventative against a variety of cardiovascular problems.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Most of the fat in anchovies is of the healthy variety. The omega-3 fatty acid group is well-represented in the flesh of anchovies. These unsaturated fats play an important role in cardiovascular health. They also help to reduce inflammation when an individual is injured or sustains a surface wound. The famous Mediterranean Diet contains numerous dishes that include anchovies, and it’s for a very good reason.
Anchovies are high in Vitamin E content. This is an important antioxidant and helps to keep the individual’s metabolism at a preferred level. It also helps to reduce symptoms of colds, flu, and other ailments. Vitamin E actually helps the body retain Vitamin A and Vitamin C, meaning that if a day or two goes by without the absorption of these other two essential vitamins, there’s no worry so long as Vitamin E is being absorbed.
A single serving of anchovies provides more than 20 percent of the daily recommended intake of niacin. This vitamin can help with cholesterol levels which in turn reduces the risk of most cardiovascular problems. Those who have been diagnosed as being at a high risk for heart attack can certainly benefit from additional niacin.
Anchovies also contain a good amount of Vitamin A. This vitamin is essential for good vision health.
Potassium is important for strong bones and for healthy muscles. Taking in the daily recommended amount of potassium results in smooth muscle contraction. Anchovies contain a good amount of potassium.
Calcium intake is vital for strong bones. Brittle bones that break easily are something no one wants. One of the most important health benefits of anchovies is the calcium these fish contain. One serving of anchovies provides the body with 147 mg of calcium.
Anchovies are also high in selenium. This mineral is important for proper metabolism at the cellular level. It’s also antioxidant-rich, and this helps to reduce the risk of cancer, particularly cancer of the lungs, stomach, and skin.
Iron is another important mineral found in anchovies. Iron gives the individual a real energy boost and helps with proper absorption of other nutrients.
Enjoying Anchovy Dishes
Remember that a single serving of anchovies — about 2 1/2 ounces — is all that’s needed to give the body a tremendous boost of nutrients. This amount is easily incorporated into the daily or weekly diet.
Enjoy anchovies in Caesar salad dressing, various pasta dishes, and Italian-style salsa verde. If you’ve never had the ambition to mix in this tasty fish with your recipes, you’ll be delighted with the delicious possibilities. The health benefits of anchovies described above are reason enough to treat yourself to some really fine seafood cuisine.