Raw Salmon fillets with olive oil and lemon slices on baking sheet
Raw Salmon fillets with olive oil and lemon slices on baking sheet

10 Reasons Why Wild Salmon Should Be Your Go-To Protein

December 14th, 2017

A Case for Making Sustainable Seafood a Regular Part of Your Diet

If you’re on a mission to eat less red meat and poultry but fear the void of a tasty, solid protein on your plate, it’s time you get acquainted with wild salmon.

Besides being a nutritional powerhouse, wild salmon protein is incredibly satisfying — steak-of-the-sea satisfying. The robust taste of wild salmon kicks onto the palate with character and bite — deep umami notes with a toothsome texture that pairs well with just about everything.

So, if you’re looking for a clean protein source with an exciting flavor profile, wild-caught Alaskan salmon — something you'll have access to as a member of the Wild Alaskan Company — will quickly become your new favorite. In addition to its unmistakable taste, here are ten more reasons why wild salmon protein should be your go-to protein literally for the rest of your life:

1. Wild Salmon Protein Is Super Lean

If you’re looking to reduce your overall calorie intake or simply to replace empty calories with high-quality sources of nutrition, salmon protein is your new best friend. A 6-ounce serving of wild coho salmon packs nearly 37 grams of protein and only about 200 calories.

2. Wild Salmon Is Heart-Healthy 

Despite being a lean source of protein and low in saturated fat, wild Alaskan salmon is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are believed to lower the risk of stroke and developing an abnormal heartbeat. Wild salmon’s stellar omega-3 content also helps the heart by reducing triglyceride levels, preventing the buildup of atherosclerotic plaque and lowering blood pressure.

3. Wild Salmon Contains a Good Balance of Fatty Acids

Although farmed salmon actually contains more omega-3 fatty acids per ounce, wild salmon has about twice as favorable of an omega-6-to-omega-3 ratio, sitting at 1:10 versus the farmed ratio of about 1:4. In contrast, consider that the American diet of processed foods and sugars can pile up twenty-five times more omega-6s than omega-3s. This dietary balance is a far cry from the ideal 1-to-1 ratio that our bodies were built to handle. Health professionals and consumers are learning more about the importance of this balance and have recently begun to understand how a diet lopsided in omega-6s is a risk factor for obesity.

4. Wild Salmon Is an Anti-Inflammatory Food

Wild salmon has anti-inflammatory properties, which can help alleviate chronic conditions like cardiovascular disease. Other studies have begun exploring the anti-inflammatory potential of salmon for ulcerative colitis, signaling again to the healing potential of this wonder fish.

5. Wild Salmon Supports Better Sleep Quality 

Regular consumption of seafood rich in omega-3 fatty acids has been associated with better sleep quality in several compelling studies over the past decade. So if you find yourself counting sheep each night to try to fall asleep, may we suggest switching things up to salmon instead?

6. Wild Salmon Is Rich in Antioxidants

Unlike other proteins, wild salmon is especially rich in antioxidants, particularly astaxanthin. It gets it from the krill and shrimp it eats as part of its varied diet. And fun fact: astaxanthin is also the reason that wild salmon is a deep hue of pink or red.

7. Wild Salmon Benefits Skin Health

Wild salmon is considered a superfood for skin health. Between its anti-inflammatory properties, its high levels of vitamin D, and its astaxanthin content — an antioxidant that specifically has beneficial applications for skin care — your skin is going to get plenty of TLC from the sea to help it retain moisture, better repair itself, and protect it against the damaging effects of UV exposure.

8. Wild Salmon Fights Cancer

Of all the non-plant based sources of protein, wild salmon is what you want in the ring when it comes to fighting cancer. For one thing, wild Alaskan salmon is an excellent source of selenium, which aids in the prevention of colorectal cancer. In contrast, red meat has been classified as a probable carcinogen by the IARC, with evidence that it actually increases the risk of colorectal cancer. There’s even recent evidence that having a diet high in the types of omega-3s found in wild salmon (known as DHA) might aid in the prevention of pancreatic cancer.

9. Wild Salmon Is a Sustainable Protein

While plant-based proteins have lower carbon footprints than their animal counterparts, wild Alaskan salmon is one of the most environmentally friendly sources of non-plant protein out there. The Environmental Defense Fund gives wild Alaskan salmon an eco-rating of “best."

10. Wild Salmon Is All-Natural

Unlike other sources of protein from industrialized agriculture, wild Alaskan salmon is always free of antibiotics and hormones, and it's never genetically modified. And unlike seafood higher up in the food chain, it’s low in developmental toxins like mercury. (P.S. Don’t worry if you don’t see the word “organic” on your wild Alaskan salmon. It can’t be organic because it’s caught in its natural habitat, not farmed and raised.) Farmed salmon, in constrast, contains synthetic additives that include antibiotics and food pellets engineered with dye. Learn more about the health profile of wild vs farmed salmon in our comprehensive blog post

The easiest way to regularly incorporate sustainable seafood into your diet is to connect directly with a trusted supplier, such as the Wild Alaskan Company, a direct-to-consumer seafood membership service that takes all the guesswork out of eating top-quality wild seafood.