Cod usually takes the backseat to the usual fan favorites like Salmon, Tilapia, Shrimp, Tuna, and Lobster however it still tastes fabulous. It is a very useful and healthy fish to consume, and there are some great recipes to take advantage of like the Cod With Herbed Pea Relish in the recipe section. So what makes cod such a nutritious fish? There are a variety of reasons from packing a mighty protein punch to aiding in cardiovascular benefits there is no reason not to try it out during your next meal.
Cod’s usually feed on mollusks, small fish, crabs, and starfish for their nutrients daily and they are native to colder waters. According to Softschools, “Larvae are transparent and only 0.16 inches long. Their size will increase 40 times after just 10 weeks. Larvae eat fito- and zooplankton. Later (when they become larger) larvae will enrich their diet with small crustaceans. At the age of 3 to 4 years, cods become sexually mature.” (1) In an optimal environment, cod can live up to 30 years in their waters unless they are caught before then. Their flesh comes in a mild flavor with a slightly white tone to it. Their claim to fame is surrounded by the stigma that cod is primarily used for making fish and chips, but it can be used for so much more (2).
The Different Varieties of Cod
There are several different varieties of cod available to purchase today, and they are all. a little bit different from each other. According to Coastal Living there are 6 different types of cod you can purchase (3).
- Atlantic Cod (Scrod, Whitefish)
- Pacific Cod (Alaska Cod, True Cod, Grey Cod, Tara, Codfish)
- Lingcod (Buffalo Cod, Bluefish, White Cod)
- Pollock (Alaskan Pollock)
- Black Cod (Sablefish, Butterfish)
- Rockfish (Rock Cod, Pacific Snapper)
The fish typically have three dorsal fins and they have a barb on their chin that helps them navigate to find certain foods. Their spawning season takes place from January to April and it usually occurs around 660ft. deep. One of the main reasons that cod are caught today are for both their meat and oil.
Cod Liver Oil Uses
While it might not sound all that appetizing, cod liver oil poses some great health benefits. It comes from that of a cod’s liver and it has been said to be one of the best omega-3 sources out there. On top of having large amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, it also has an abundance of Vitamin D and Vitamin A. Some of the known benefits for taking cod liver oil are to lower blood pressure, prevent heart disease, fight inflammation in the body, and aid with autoimmune diseases to name a few. It also has the power to help heal skin wounds and treat kidney disease as well, so it is a very versatile oil with many healing benefits.
Who would have thought that your dinner plate full of cod could be such a healthy option for dinner, and give you such great nutrition with minimal calories? Next time you are searching for a healthy alternative to your regular Salmon, give cod a try and reap the benefits!