Omega-3

Oh my, Omega 3: The fatty acid superstar

Wendy Fedele's Mediterranean Crusted Sardines with Greek Salad is easy to make and deliciously scrumptious!

 

Oh my, Omega 3: The fatty acid superstar

If you’re trying to conceive or planning for pregnancy, it’s time to start looking at your fatty acid profile.

Wendy Fedele, a Fertility and Pre-natal Dietitian, says that the types of fats in our diet have a big impact on our fertility. “One type of fat that we definitely want more of are Omega 3 fatty acids. Studies have linked Omega 3 fats to reduced inflammation, better egg health and embryo quality and higher rates of embryo implantation,” says Wendy.

She adds that Omega 3s are also associated with improved sperm quality, “this isn’t surprising given that a particular type of Omega 3, DHA, is a crucial part of the sperm structure.”

The good news? Consuming just 2-3 serves of oily Omega 3 rich fish each week such as salmon, sardines, mackerel, herring, trout, or anchovies can help you meet your preconception needs. Wendy adds, “Consuming this amount of fish and seafood is associate with a faster time to pregnancy… plus, these couples had more sex!”

It is important, though, to avoid high mercury fish such as shark (flake), swordfish, marlin, orange roughy and catfish, as higher intakes of mercury can impact your baby’s development. If you don’t eat fish or seafood, make sure you chat to your friendly dietitian or GP about whether an Omega 3 supplement is right for you and the suggested dosage. Vegan supplements derived from Algal oil are also available.

Looking to boost your Omega 3 intake? Try this week’s “Before Baby” recipe: Mediterranean Crusted Sardines with Greek Salad. Not only are sardines an excellent, low mercury source of Omega 3s, but they’re also packed with other fertility supporting nutrients and an excellent source of well-absorbed iron.

Mediterranean Crusted Sardines with Greek Salad

Serves 2

Crusted sardine ingredients:

  • 8 butterflied sardines (buy pre-filleted sardines to save time!)
  • ½ cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 teaspoons dried parsley
  • 1 egg, whisked
  • 1 tablespoon of Extra Virgin olive oil

Greek Salad ingredients:

  • 1 large red capsicum, halved, deseeded and roughly chopped
  • 1 Punnet of cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
  • ½ red onion, chopped
  • 1 cucumber chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 60g feta cheese, crumbled
  • 100g pitted kalamata olives

Dressing:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar (or can use white wine vinegar or just lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Dried oregano

Instructions:

To make the Greek Salad:

  1. Combine all salad ingredients in a salad bowl
  2. Combine salad dressing ingredients in a jar with a lid, close the lid and shake to combine
  3. Pour the dressing on the salad and toss to combine

To make the sardines:

  1. Place flour, egg wash and breadcrumbs combined with dried parsley in 3 separate shallow dishes
  2. Dip each sardine on either side in flour then egg mixture (allowing excess to drip off), and then dip each side in the panko breadcrumbs and rest on a plate.
  3. Heat the olive oil in large pan over a medium heat
  4. Cook the sardines for 2-3 minutes on one side, until lightly browned
  5. Flip and cook on the second side for another 2-3 minutes until lightly browned
  6. Serve on a plate with your Greek salad, lemon wedges and chopped Parsley