Fish eggs, particularly salmon roe, are very rich in nutrients. Salmon roe has the highest level of omega 3 of any other food. The omega 3 fats (EPA and DHA) in one ounce of salmon roe equate to 1800 mg. This is 3.5 times the amount in salmon (from the highest omega 3 species). In addition to being rich in brain fats, salmon roe is rich in antioxidants and fat-soluble vitamins including high levels of vitamins C, D and E, thiamine, folate, selenium, and a significant amount of B12.
Fish eggs are also high in protein, with one ounce of salmon roe containing 6 grams of protein. It is also a good source of cholesterol for those children who are allergic to chicken eggs. (Yes, that’s right, cholesterol has its place in a healthy diet too). Salmon eggs also contain high amounts of astaxanthin a powerful antioxidant that gives salmon and salmon eggs is orange/red color. As Dr. Joseph Mercola explains, astaxanthin is “550 times stronger than vitamin E and 6,000 times more potent than vitamin C. In addition, it is 10 times more effective than zeaxanthin, lutein, canthaxanthin and beta-carotene. Salmon roe (and other fish eggs for that matter) are great for brain development in children, fertility, and good health. Weston A. Price a nutrition researcher in the 1930s and 40s who studied the diets of native cultures states in his book, Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, the following about salmon and other fish eggs, “The eggs of the salmon are dried and stored as an important item of nutrition for both children and adults. They are also used to increase the fertility of the women. From a chemical standpoint they are one of the most nutritious foods I have found anywhere” and “In many of the primitive tribes living by the sea we found emphasis on the value of fish eggs.”
Salmon roe is delicious. It is cured in salt; therefore, tasting like little salty peas that burst in your mouth. Starting healthy habits early Salmon roe is a great food for children as well . My child loved salmon roe, even as a baby. She loved picking up the little pea-sized sticky eggs and popping them in her mouth, as they burst with flavor. (I was always careful to only consume the highest quality I could find, as fish eggs can carry food-borne illnesses.) While they’re a toddler favorite, don’t forget to try them with your big kids too! When you start children on healthy foods when they are young they often continue to love them as they get older. When my daughter was in preschool, going to the “fish egg store” was her preferred Friday after school treat. And still is. This is my daughter at 9 years old, on a mom and daughter outing. It was her suggestion. Getting “ikura” at sushi is still one of her favorite “treats.” You might be surprised, even some picky eaters enjoy them. Here are some photos from my daughter as a baby and now eating salmon roe. If you’ve never done it before, try salmon roe. Eat them plain, or add them on top of some rice or a deviled egg. We bought salmon roe in bulk at Zabar’s in New York City recently, and came home and ate half a pound in a week. Here is our own homemade sushi.