Friday, December 24, 2010

Fried Fish May Explain 'Stroke Belt' Mystery

Too much fried fish may contribute to the high rate of stroke in America's "stroke belt," according to a new study.

The results showed that people living in the stroke belt - including residents of North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas and Louisiana - were about 30 percent more likely to eat two or more servings of fried fish every week than those living in the rest of the country, the researchers said.

Eating fish can be healthy - fish are key sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which previous studies have shown to be associated with reduced risk of heart attack and stroke. The American Heart Association recommends people consume at least two meals containing fish per week.

However, there is evidence that frying fish reduces their amount of omega-3 fatty acids. Frying is also associated with an increase in the food's fat and calorie content.

"The differences in dietary fish consumption, and specific cooking methods - frying - may contribute to the higher rates of stroke among those who live in the stroke belt and among African-Americans," Nahab told MyHealthNewsDaily. Fadi Nahab is a study researcher of Emory University in Atlanta.

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