[dropcap]B[/dropcap]EIJING – Fish and fishery products may benefit not only cognitive functions but can also lower risk of mental disorders, heart diseases and improve insulin action in some cases.
Research at China’s Zhejiang University School of Medicine showed polyunsaturated fatty acids present substantially in fish is associated with lower risk of cognitive impairment and can prevent diseases like dementia and Alzheimer’s. The research is based on 21 different cohort studies involving 1,81,580 participants.
According to Dr Anoop Misra, chairman, Fortis CDOC hospital for diabetes and allied specialities, intake of fish as part of diet is useful in different ways. “Fish oil helps in nervous system construction, keeps the heart healthy and is also useful in construction of blood cells,” he said, adding a portion or two of fish as part of at least one meal can help keep multiple organs healthy.
Earlier studies have shown that people living in coastal areas are healthier with lesser heart problems.While sea fish is rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids or fish oil, fresh water fish also contain some amount of such fatty acids.
Doctors say very few vegetarian food like kidney beans contain such oil or fatty acids. Flax seeds (Alasee), rarely taken as part of daily meal, are considered the closest to fish oil in terms of its nutritive qualities. Olive oil and canola oil are believed to be contain some fatty acids.
Studies conducted have shown use of olive pomace or canola oil can significantly decrease chances of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. However, doctors say fish oil is far richer in its nutritive qualities.