January 11, 2011

Fried fish may be stroke culprit

Fried fish is a major suspect in causing strokes in Americans living in the Southeastern part of the United States, Emory researchers have found.

A study published in a December issue of the online journal Neurology finds people living in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee eat more fried fish than people living in the rest of the country. African-Americans are more affected than whites.

The study’s author, an Emory neurologist, says the type of fish is just as important as the preference to eating the fish when cooked fried.

“While all fish contain healthy omega-3 acids, the amount of these essential nutrients varies depending on the type of fish and the cooking methods,” says Fadi Nahab, assistant professor of neurology in the School of Medicine and medical director of the stroke program at Emory University Hospital.

Previous studies have shown that the omega-3 fatty acids in fish, especially fatty fish such as salmon, herring and mackerel, may reduce the risk of stroke.

The American Heart Association recommends that people eat fish at least two times per week with an emphasis on fatty fish.

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