Is Salmon Skin Healthy?

It is no news that salmon is one of the healthiest and most tasty fish you can have. With all the health benefits that fish provides, what about the skin? Can you eat the skin? Is it Healthy for you? Is the skin healthier than the salmon itself? 

Yes, salmon skin is healthy for human consumption. It is packed with loads of protein that helps in building muscles, weight loss, and healthy living. Four (4) ounces of salmon fish have 23 grams of protein while the skin has 30 grams of protein per serving of 4 ounces. The skin also contains the unique fatty acid that the body cannot produce (omega-3 fatty acids) and useful antioxidants.

For example, salmon skin has 150g of EPA and DHA combined for a 4-ounce serving. It is an excellent source of zinc, selenium, phosphorus, and niacin. With all these amazing benefits, salmon skin is a healthy food to eat. Regularly eating it can help you reduce the risk of some diseases like cancer, and heart disease.

If you are a fan of sashimi or sushi, you have probably eaten salmon skin. It is a delicacy in Japan that is gaining wider popularity around the globe. In whatever way you want to take salmon skin (either in sushi, or frying salmon skin crisps), you must ensure they are thoroughly cleaned before consumption.

What Are The Benefits of Eating Salmon Skin

As I’ve mentioned earlier, salmon skin has tons of benefits. It is important to dive deeper into some of the benefits for a better understanding so we can take advantage of these benefits.

1. Reduces your chances of cardiovascular diseases

Many studies show eating salmon regularly can reduce one’s chances of developing a heart attack. The useful components that prevent these heart diseases include EPA and DHA fatty acids, potassium, omega-6 fatty acids, selenium, and phosphorus.

Some studies show the nutrients in salmon skin have twice as much effect to reduce coronary calcification as compared to other parts of the fish.

2. Helps in managing diabetes

Salmon skin is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which help in reducing insulin resistance I’m the body. This shows how important salmon skin can be for people with diabetes because of their difficulty using the hormone insulin to help remove glucose out of their bloodstream into the cells to be used as energy.

A patient suffering from diabetes can utilize the benefits of omega-3 fatty acids to help manage their condition.

3. Can prevent certain types of cancers

Some studies show the benefits of salmon skin in preventing cancer. The selenium and antioxidants contained in the salmon skin help to prevent certain cancers. The omega-3 fatty acids also help in reducing inflammation in the body.

This makes it a healthy food to eat if you are worried about getting cancers like digestive cancer and prostate cancer.

4. Improves brain function

Salmon skin contains vitamin B which is beneficial for improving brain function. It also contains DHA which is a useful nutrient for a healthy brain.  The omega-3 fatty acid can also help in maintaining focus and concentration throughout the day.

5. A great alternative to red meat

Red meat contains high cholesterol and saturated fat which is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. But salmon skin contains omega-3 fatty acids and is low in saturated fats, it is a great alternative for people who want to reduce their red meat intake. Being a rich source of protein, you can easily get as many nutrients as you would in red meat without the negative health effect that comes with it.

Aren’t you amazed by the healthy benefits of salmon skin? When next you are grilling or frying your salmon, you may want to do that with the skin on to enjoy all the healthy benefits of this delicate fish. You may also buy the skin from the fish shop and make nice salmon skin crisps that you can snack on.

What are the Safe Ways to Eat Salmon Skin?

We all know the health benefits of salmon skin to our body, brain, and immune system. So also we know the potential risk and side effects of these delicacies. Below are some helpful tips on the safest way to eat salmon skin.

  • If you’re eating the skin raw, ensure they’ve been frozen for at least 24 hours before eating. The freezing process will help kill any parasite that may have contaminated the fish.
  • Always buy from a reputable source
  • When buying sashimi or sushi with salmon skin, ensure it is from a reputable restaurant and the food is prepared by professionals. 
  • If you are frying your salmon skin, avoid adding unhealthy fats to it. The best cooking method is dry-frying it pan-frying.
  • When frying, cut the skin thicker than your would the fish. This is because they are thinner than the flesh and could burn easily if the cuts are thin.
  • For cooked salmon, you don’t have to cook them for long hours. Simply boil them for 4-5 minutes, strain them, and slow them to cool before serving.
  • Avoid exposing your salmon skin to heat and oxygen. Because of their high oil and fat content, too much exposure can make them carcinogenic.

Side Effects and Potential Risks of Eating Salmon Skin

There are a few serious side effects to eating salmon skin. These side effects are primarily a result of food poisoning. The skin is the part of the fish that comes in direct contact with the water and other surfaces. It is at more risk of getting contaminated if it is not properly preserved or cleaned before cooking or serving.

To ensure you are eating salmon skin that is safe from any contaminants, ensure you’re buying from a reputable source. Also, make sure you wash, clean, and cook properly before eating them. When cooked properly, most of these bacteria are destroyed in the process by heat. 

It is also important to also note that fish consumption (salmon included) comes with the risk of Mercury and PBCs poisoning. Always look for ways to minimize these health hazards.

Common Myths on Salmon You Should Debunk

Salmon is one of the healthiest and most versatile proteins to eat. There are numerous ways you can enjoy this delicate pink fish either raw in sushi, poached, baked, or otherwise prepared. There are many ways you can prepare this fish, but there are also many misconceptions about it.

These misconceptions and myths may come in the way of allowing you to enjoy the rich flavor this fish offers. Some of the salmon myths you need to disregard include;

1. A quality salmon is bright pink colored

The first thing that catches your eye when shopping for salmon is probably the sight of the fish in the glass case. Color helps you indicate a bad fish. When buying fish, no one goes for a pale-colored fish because it is assumed to be bad.

However, it is important to note that salmon color may vary due to the food dyes added to it. It helps give it vibrant colors. Most farmed salmon do not have that dark red color, and it is nothing to worry about. Most farm-raised salmon is naturally grey while the pink color is added.

2. Avoid eating salmon skin

Some myths say you shouldn’t eat salmon skin because it contains fat. Indeed, salmon skin is fatty, but this fat is healthy to consume as it contains a lot of health benefits including omega-3 fatty acids.

When cooking, the skin protects the fish from getting too brown and drying up in the process. It is one of the best parts of the salmon especially when it crisps up during cooking.

3. The whitish stuff on the salmon is bad

Whichever method of cooking you used, you’ll come across the albumin “whitish stuff” on your salmon. This albumin is in liquid form in a fish, they come together and contract when heated thereby pushing out the white-colored protein.

It is a natural part of the fish’s body, hence, it is safe to eat. If you don’t want the appearance of the albumin, you simply brine your salmon before cooking. It’ll break down the protein and minimize its appearance.

4. Salmon is expensive

Farmed salmons that can be found at grocery stores are quite affordable. The wild-caught salmon are those expensive parts.

When salmon are out of season, they can become a bit pricey but you have a wide variety of options that can mitigate the cost.

5. Farmed Salmon is not good

Just like chicken farming, it can be done badly thereby jeopardizing the taste. It is the same for salmon. Salmon is one of the most globally consumed fish, and relying on the wild fish population will only end up making them go extinct.

There is every need for farming them to keep up with the demand. Salmon farmed under the right condition is as good as wild-caught salmon. This farming, if done properly will increase the chain of omega-3 than that of the wild.

6. Raw salmon is healthier than cooked salmon

Cooking salmon does not tamper with its nutritional content. There are some cooking methods that even increases the nutritional content while other maintain it. In most cases, cooked salmon is more nutritious than raw salmon.

And by cooking your fish, you are at a better chance of not consuming parasites that can cause illnesses.

7. Fresh salmon is better than frozen salmon

Buying frozen salmon is similar to buying the freshest salmon you can get. The only time when there is a difference is when you are buying directly off the boat. Most of the changes in frozen fish appear in the texture and appearance and nothing more.

On the more positive side, freezing your salmon helps preserve the freshness, flavor, and nutrients of the fish. There is a common practice in Japan where they freeze all their seafood to kill any parasite that may be on/in the flesh.

Simple Salmon Skin Recipe: Ingredients and Procedures

This recipe is simple and nice. You may be hooked on these tasty salmon skins for a long time. You can either have them as appetizers or school snacks for your kids or munch on them while watching your favorite TV show.

Ingredients:

  • Salmon skin
  • Vegetable Oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Black or red pepper flakes
  • Seasoning

Procedure:

  • Wash and clean the salmon skin
  • Cut them into thin long strips
  • Add them into a bowl, add some salt and give it a good mix.
  • Add in a bit of seasoning and mix thoroughly
  • Heat your vegetable oil on medium-high heat 
  • Fry the skin until it’s crispy.
  • While trying to keep giving them a gentle mix to prevent them from sticking together
  • When crispy, dish them out on parchment paper to help absorb excess oil
  • Sprinkle some red or black pepper flakes and give it a good mix
  • Enjoy it as a snack or get a dipping of your choice and eat it together.

This recipe is a great alternative to potato chips. It is perfect for a high-protein, low-calorie, low-fat snack. Try them today and bid those greasy chips goodbye. Not to mention how simple, fast and easy it is to prepare.


Conclusion

Salmon skin just like the fish is healthy as its flesh. It is a good source of protein, omega-3 fatty acids, niacin, phosphorus, and many other vital nutrients. These nutrients help in managing diabetes, and preventing heart diseases and some types of cancers.

There are various ways you can enjoy salmon skin, either by eating it together with the fish or preparing it as a snack.

About The Author

Hi There, I'm Lisa Anderson. I'm a 30-year-old with a passion for cooking, art, and dogs (not always in that order). With a background in both cooking and writing, ShiftyChevre is a collection of my experiences with food, recipes, lifestyle, and other kitchen-related topics.

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