Its pink, fleshy, soft and sweet-tasting meat make it one of the most prized and purchased fish in Italy and internationally: we are talking about salmon, a marine species that is typical of the cold oceans of the northern hemisphere. The most common and well-known is the Atlantic Salmon (Salmo salar): Norway, Canada and Scotland are the three countries that are mainly involved in its fishing, breeding, preservation and marketing cycle, together with Alaska with its wild Sockeye Red Salmon.
It is a type of fish with a fascinating lifestyle: in their reproductive period, salmon search for highly oxygenated water that is low in salt. Therefore, they travel upstream to reach the sources, where they spawn. The female species spawn between February and March and the small salmon, when they are still 10 cm long, swim down the rivers again to the sea where they will live until their sexual maturity. Adult specimens can reach up to one and a half metres in length and weigh over 40 kilograms.
Wild salmon, caught while respecting its natural life cycles, is a precious source of nutraceuticals that are essential for our well-being: 100 grams of fresh salmon contain as much as 20 grams of protein, more than 300 mg of potassium, approximately 30 mg of magnesium and 10 grams of calcium. It also provides a good supply of vitamin A and B vitamins, as well as approximately 400 IU (international units) of vitamin D. The most significant supplement remains that linked to the important presence of Omega 3 polyunsaturated fatty acids: The EPA and DHA contained in salmon are well-known for helping you keep a healthy heart, keep triglycerides under control, as well as a healthy eyesight and brain. As a result of the combination with carotenoids and vitamin D, it enhances the immunomodulatory and antioxidant effect. Plus, they are excellent allies against chronic articular inflammations, but also intestinal and epidermal ones.
However, it is essential to select the type of product we eat with caution and awareness: the majority of Italian fish found on stands is farmed salmon, but wild salmon that lives and grows according to nature can also be found. It is possible to distinguish them by visually checking a few characteristics like the more intense and even colour, more compact meat, with less strips of fat, given the option to swim freely and brave the currents.
Whether fresh salmon or packs of smoked salmon, it is important to read the label and ask the fishmonger for all the information regarding the origin and processing and preservation methods.
Therapist and naturopath