Oily fish

The NHS state that “a healthy, balanced diet should include at least two portions of fish a week, including one of oily fish.” Fish and shellfish are good sources of many vitamins and minerals and oily fish, in particular, such as salmon, mackerel and sardines contain omega-3 fatty acids, which can help to keep your heart healthy.

Oily fish, omega 3 and fibromyalgia

In addition to benefiting our heart health there is research to suggest that having a good intake of omega-3 fatty acids in our diet may also benefit our cognitive and emotional health. This is particularly relevant for people with fibromyalgia who may suffer with mental fogginess and mood disorders such as anxiety and depression.

Evidence suggests that omega-3 found in fatty fish can alleviate symptoms of anxiety and enhance mood. Omega-3 rich foods that contain alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) provide essential fatty acids that regulate neurotransmitters, reduce inflammation and promote healthy brain function.

Sardines and salmon also contain vitamin D. Researchers believe that there is enough evidence to state that vitamin D has a positive effect on depression. There is also some research that suggests that low intake of omega-3 fatty acids may have a role to play in symptom occurrence for people with fibromyalgia.

Oily fish include:

  • herring
  • pilchards
  • salmon
  • sardines
  • sprats
  • trout
  • mackerel

Fresh and canned tuna do not count as oily fish.