How Do Fish Help Humans?
There are more than 34,300 known species of fish, the most diverse species of any vertebrates! Such fish diversity is crucial in the survival of the human species.
How then do fish help humans? Fish are an essential resource for food, livelihood, and culture for humans. They are also a vital part of our learning, entertainment, and civilization.
A Must-Read: Fishing Gifts For Men
Read on and know more details about the roles that fish play in our lives. You will have a different perspective of fish, even give them more respect.
As A Source Of Livelihood
Did you know that more than 250 million people worldwide directly depend on the fisheries industry for their livelihood? These include fishers and aquaculture practitioners who have a direct hand in cultivating and catching fish.
There are also millions of more people employed in the industry’s value chains.
Emphasis must be made, too, that people who live near bodies of water rely on fishing as their primary source of income. It is all too true for the poorest of the poor who practice subsistence fishing.
Any extra catch is usually sold, and the proceeds used to buy other necessities.
For this reason, the improvement of the productivity of the fisheries industry is vital in human survival! It’s crucial in the reduction of hunger and poverty among millions of people.
It’s essential in increasing food and nutrition security, disposable income, and economic growth.
But some issues plague the fisheries and aquaculture industry. These include overfishing, agricultural pollution, and industrial development, among others. These have resulted in the severe depletion of fish stocks worldwide.
As A Vital Source Of Nutrition
Fish is a primary source of food and, thus, nutrition for more than one billion people. Most of these people consider fish as their source of daily animal protein because of their affordability. Many other people eat fish as their only animal protein source, too.
Fish provide both macronutrients and micronutrients essential in overall health. Aside from high-quality protein, these include Vitamin D, iodine, and omega-3 fatty acids. These are essential in the normal development of children and normal body functions in adults.
Take note that protein, a macronutrient, is crucial in several body functions and overall health. Proteins are the building block of muscles, catalyze reactions, and transmit messages between cells.
These are also essential in keeping the body alive by transporting molecules and aiding the immune system.
Several studies have also pointed out their wide range of health benefits. The regular consumption of fish may:
- Decrease the risk of cardiovascular diseases like strokes and heart attacks. Fish have high levels of omega-3 fatty acids that aid in maintaining arterial health.
- Reduce the risk of autoimmune diseases like Type I diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and rheumatoid arthritis. Again, the evidence suggests that it’s due to the omega-3 fatty acids content.
- Improve brain and eye development in children and decrease the risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in older adults. AMD is a leading cause of blindness and vision impairment.
- Enhance sleep quality due to its high Vitamin D content.
Other Health Benefits Of Fish To Humans
The regular consumption of fish has also been linked to mental and emotional health! Fish intake may decrease mental decline by maintaining gray matter in the brain among older adults.
It may also aid in the prevention and treatment of depression and bipolar depression. These are serious mental health disorders that affect the quality of life, even lead to suicide. Initial studies point out that omega-3 fatty acids in fish seem to improve symptoms.
Even watching fish in aquariums can enhance mental health! The soothing effect of watching fish is akin to being on the beach and listening to the waves. There can also be a notable decrease in blood pressure and heart rate when watching fish.
Indeed, fish help us by being our sustenance and providing us with a sense of calm! These physical and mental benefits make fish our best friend, too, of a sort.
Tips On Eating Fish For Its Health Benefits
But before you eat more than your fair share of fish, you should be aware of certain things! Keep in mind that anything in excess can be dangerous, and it applies to fish, too. It is mainly because of concerns related to eating unsafe levels of mercury from fish.
With this in mind, here are useful tips for getting the most from the fish intake.
- Eat low-mercury fish once or twice a week, if you’re a relatively healthy adult. But pregnant women, teens, and children should ideally avoid eating mercury-containing fish. If it cannot be avoided, experts recommend limiting intake to just once a month.
The best fish for regular intake are anchovies, herring, Arctic char, pollack, and wild-caught Pacific salmon. These usually contain lower levels of mercury, if at all, while still being high in nutrients.
- Limit the number of servings per week. We recommend eating two to three servings of fish per week with each serving about four ounces. Also, be sure to combine fish with other healthy food, particularly fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes.
If you cannot eat fish for any reason, you should consider taking fish oil supplements. These dietary supplements contain omega-3 fatty acids from fish and microalgae.
A few of our recommended fish oil supplements are:
Nature Made Fish Oil 1000 mg Softgels
Each bottle contains 250 soft gel capsules for 125 days of intake (one capsule takes twice a day). Each capsule contains 600mg of omega-3 fatty acids.
Sports Research Fish Oil Capsule
The fish oil is sourced from wild Alaska Pollock only, which means it has been harvested through sustainable methods.
Arazo Nutrition Omega 3 Fish Oil 2250mg
Every capsule contains the highest volumes of DHA and EPA for maximum health benefits. There’s no funny odor and taste, too, and it’s easy to swallow.
While these fish oil supplements are available as over-the-counter products, you should ask your doctor for advice about their proper use. You should also follow the manufacturer’s recommended dosage unless your doctor approves a higher dosage,
While it may seem like an exaggeration, the human species depends on fish for its survival! We eat a wide variety of fish for sustenance and nutrition, their most vital role in our lives. We also like fish as pets in aquariums large and small.
We even think of fishing as a recreational sport, such as in fly fishing. We also use fish as a symbol of religion, culture, and civilization. Suffice it to say that fish can live without humans, but humans are unlikely to live without fish.