Are you eating enough fish to support your fertility, hormones and cycle? And are you eating the right kind of fish to supercharge your fertility? Is it safe to eat salmon if you're pregnant?
We sat down with Rachel Bolton, founder of Plan Yourself Pregnant, to talk about the fertility benefits of wild salmon, the difference between wild salmon and farmed salmon, wild salmon species, how to sustainably source salmon, a simple way to eat it and where to buy it.
Wild Alaskan salmon, especially Copper River sockeye salmon, is an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids, healthy proteins, vitamins and minerals from glacial-fed waters. Wild salmon is good for fertility because it contains:
Vitamin A, B12, C, D and E
Watch our interview on the fertility benefits of salmon
The differences in quality and health benefits are immense. Wild salmon live in their natural environment. A wild salmon is born in a freshwater stream, then it travels to the saltwater ocean where it swims thousands of miles and builds healthy muscle. When the fish matures, it returns back to the very stream where it was born to spawn (reproduce) and die. Alaska Fresh's wild salmon is caught in the salt water before it starts its migration home.
Wild salmon consumes a diet rich in minerals and wild plankton and naturally develops all of its qualities and characteristics, including its famous deep red color.
Farmed salmon is often born and raised on a fish farm in a cramped pen. It eats man-made fish feed which requires a lot of resources to create. Diseases spread very easily in such an environment so farmed fish are often given antibiotics to prevent illnesses.
Did you know that farmed salmon is actually often a pale grey color? The farmers add food colorant to make farmed salmon look orange in color. Different types of wild salmon are different colors ranging from pink to red.
What are the different types of wild salmon?
The types of wild salmon differ in appearance and also nutrient content. If you’re looking for high levels of Omega-3s and bold flavor, go for Copper River sockeye salmon.
If that’s too rich for you, try pink, keta or coho salmon. Especially wild pink salmon deserves an honorable mention – it is often underestimated for its smaller size and reputation of a fish from a can, but it has a super mild flavor, it’s surprisingly high in protein and it’s very affordable.
How to source sustainable salmon
Alaska Fresh works directly with salmon and halibut fishermen in Alaska who harvest in sustainable fisheries that are strongly regulated by the government to ensure that the wild fish are not overfished and return for many generations into the future.
Adriana and her husband used to live in Alaska and get all of their fish from their friends who commercially fish out of Cordova, Alaska, a very small, remote fishing village on the coast. They absolutely love telling their stories and are proud to know the source and path of how the fish came from the ocean and to customers’ tables.
An easy way to make wild salmon
Salmon is Adriana’s version of fast food. It’s what she makes when she hasn’t planned anything and needs a quick, healthy dinner. She puts the wild salmon skin side down on parchment paper, sprinkles with salt and bakes it in the oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 12 minutes while she prepares a killer side (steamed vegetable or baked french fries!) to go with it. You can check out other delicious salmon (and halibut) recipes here.
The wild salmon is done when the white natural fats have marbled out of the meat. You can also make it on the grill or in a pan. You don’t need to do anything fancy with wild Alaskan salmon, the fish has such a mild, amazing base flavor enhanced by the salt, it really speaks for itself.