If you have a chronic health condition, such as diabetes, there is an extra layer of consideration that needs to go into everything you eat. Your health needs to be the number one priority and, especially with diabetes, maintaining a healthy blood sugar level is vital to minimising further complications in the future. If you’re someone who’s looking into expanding your diet, fish is an ideal addition. But, is it appropriate for those of us with diabetes? In this guide, we’ll provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision.
What Causes Diabetes?
There are two types of diabetes – Type 1 and Type 2. Type 1 diabetes is considered to be genetic and occurs when your immune system begins to attach the insulin-producing cells found in the body. Type 2 diabetes is caused when the cells in our body become resistant to insulin and are unable to take in the required sugar. Equally, the pancreas in those with Type 2 diabetes is unable to produce the insulin needed to manage their blood sugar levels. Lifestyle choices such as a diet that is high in fat or carbohydrates and high alcohol intake can, over time, cause a predisposed individual to develop Type 2 diabetes.
To help better manage Type 2 diabetes, the recommendations are to maintain a healthy diet, engage in regular exercise and monitor blood sugar levels. And, to do this, changes to an existing diet can be made to help achieve good results.
Why Is Fish a Good Dietary Addition?
Fish is considered a healthy addition to everyone’s diet – especially those who need to take better care of their heart, liver and other organs. It is abundant in protein and necessary polyunsaturated fats, including Omega-3 fatty acids. The fish is also very rich in Vitamin D which it normally gets from our cholesterol and exposure to sunlight.
Low Vitamin D is associated with diabetes but is also a common issue for those of us living in the UK and other Western countries where sunlight isn’t always abundant. Lifestyles that keep us in front of desks or fears about being exposed to too much sun mean that we no longer have ample exposure to the levels that we need to stay healthy. And, those of us who spend more time indoors are more disposed to having a poor diet. Introducing fish into our diet is an effective, easy and reliable way to bring these nutrients into our body to reap the benefits.
Is Smoked Fish as Good as Fresh?
The process of smoking salmon and other fishes slowly cures the meat to make it edible, both hot and cold. Due to the processing method, smoked salmon is higher in sodium than fresh salmon. Too much salt can have a detrimental impact on all of us, especially those dealing with chronic health issues. However, aside from this, there is very little difference in the nutritional benefits of smoked or fresh salmon.
Both will add fatty acids and vitamins to your diet. Smoked salmon has a longer shelf life and more versatility when it comes to the serving. Plus, oak-smoked salmon has a rich, additional flavour that is perfect when paired with crisp salads and vegetables such as beetroot.
What Should I Be Aware Of?
For diabetics, smoked salmon offers more benefits than it does disadvantages. In general, people should consider the amount of sodium in their diet as too much salt can put unnecessary pressure on the heart and organs. Additionally, those with low-immune systems and including pregnant women should be aware of the risk of listeria that can present itself with smoked salmon. Other than these points, it is easy to bring salmon and other smoked fishes into your diabetic diet in order to see benefits from a healthier lifestyle.
How to Bring Smoked Salmon Into Your Diet
The beauty of smoked salmon is how easy it is to introduce it into all meals and your snacks throughout the day. It can be paired with toast and avocado in the morning along with a sprinkling of herbs or hollandaise sauce. Mix into cold salads or serve with pasta and creamy sauces for wholesome lunches and batch cooking. Salmon also works well with sushi, laid on to a pizza or used in a serving platter.
Oak-smoked Scottish salmon has a fresh and delicious flavour that isn’t overwhelmed by the smoke but pairs perfectly with crispy capers on sourdough bread. This is our speciality here at Wiltshire Smokehouse and one of the products we have been perfecting for over 25-years.
Discovering Smoked Salmon With Wiltshire Smokehouse
Our family-run business is passionate about bringing the freshest and most delicious smoked salmon into your kitchen today. Whether you’re dealing with a long-term health condition such as diabetes or simply adore seafood, we have a range of products available to suit your needs. Our favourites are the smoked Scottish Salmon, farmed from the clear waters off the West Coast and arriving to us within 24 hours. Each fish is filleted by hand and dry-cured immediately before being smoked with sustainably sourced Wiltshire Oak for up to 16 hours.
If you have Type 2 or Type 1 diabetes, we recommend speaking to your health professional before drastically changing your diet. While smoked salmon is a nutrient-right option, it is important to have the support of those who best understand your individual condition.