How Much Salmon is one serving

Salmon is a nutrient-dense food that many people find delicious. However, it is a very fishy-tasting species of fish. Salmon is good as the main food in a meal so how much salmon is one serving?

3 oz (85g) is a serving of salmon for adults, whereas, 1 oz (28g) is a serving size for children, according to the American Cancer Society and the American Heart Association. For adults, this is equivalent to the size of a deck of cards or a bar of soap, for children, it’s the size of a matchbox.

If you are trying to build muscle the serving size can be increased. This is because when building muscle you need a lot more protein intake than normal. Below, I will explain how many nutrients are in salmon as a percentage of the recommended daily intake of the main nutrients you should consume.

What Nutrients Are in a Serving of Salmon

Salmon is widely regarded as being a good source of Omega-3s. But, it is also relatively high in other nutrients. Here’s how much of each of the nutrients are found in a serving of salmon.

On average, a serving of salmon is particularly high in Vitamin B-6 (62.9% RDI), Phosphorous (24.3% RDI), and Omega-3 (72.8%). All other nutrients are relatively minor and range from about 1% to 5% of the RDI. 

To make this info easy to see, I’ve compiled it into a table. 

Note that the percentage of the recommended daily intake is for adults.

NutrientNutrient per serving (3 oz)Percent of recommended daily intake (RDI)
Calories120 calories5.7%
Fiber00
Protein16.83 g3.7%
Vitamin C3.06 mg3.4%
Vitamin B-60.70 mg62.9%
Vitamin A10.20 µg1.3%
Magnesium24.65 mg1.6%
Phosphorous170.00 mg24.3%
Zinc0.54 mg5.8%
Sodium37.40 mg1.6%
Omega-3 1,921 mg72.8%

Is it OK to have salmon everyday?

Including salmon in your diet on a regular basis can be beneficial due to its nutritional profile. However, whether it is okay to have salmon every day depends on various factors, including your overall dietary balance, personal health considerations, and potential concerns related to contaminants.

The serving size for children is one-third (33%) of the serving size of an adult. And children are approximately one-third the body weight of an adult, depending on their age. So, the percentages of the recommended daily intakes for adults and children are about the same.

Fish and meat are widely regarded as being good sources of protein. A widely accepted metric for how much protein you should consume is 1g per pound (2.5kg) of target body weight. For example, if you want to weigh 150lbs you should consume 150g of protein per day.

Example of one portion for an adult

Salmon is an OK source of protein and does help. But, to get near a reasonable amount of grams of protein salmon generally won’t cut it. And you should consume meats that are higher in protein instead. Chicken breast for example has close to double the protein that salmon has.

Otherwise, you will need to supplement your diet with protein shakes. Eating too much salmon a day can give you too much Omega-3 and vitamin B-6. As both of these are found in high amounts in salmon. Too much Omega-3 on a regular basis is known to be bad for you (source). 

The same is true of too much vitamin B-6. Therefore, it’s best to only consume a moderate amount of salmon and only consume it for one meal per day. 

Here’s a very helpful video explaining the benefits of eating salmon:https://www.youtube.com/embed/0WmRW3ICbA0?feature=oembed

Is 6 Oz of Salmon Too Much

Salmon is typically sold as one large slab with the skin on or off. But, can also be sold pre-sliced in vacuum-sealed packages, and the amount of salmon sold is typically in a package that is around 6 oz (170g). So, This is whether you should consume the whole 6 oz in a meal and whether it’s too much.

As a general rule, 6 oz of salmon is not too much for an adult. The recommended daily intake of meat and fish per day is 5.5 oz (155g) according to the American Heart Association. However, it is too much for children, who will typically get full with 2 oz (90g) or less.

In general, unless you’re trying to put on muscle, or maintain muscle mass, a 6 oz pack of salmon will give you 2 servings. Salmon will tend to discolor and dry out if left unsealed in the fridge. 

It will tend to go a darker shade of orange on the edges that are exposed to the air, and very dry. When you cook it, it’s still edible but not as flavorful. These areas can be cut out and don’t affect the rest of a piece of salmon. But, it is slightly wasteful. For salmon that is pre-cut into small pieces in some cases, the entire piece will need to be throughout. However, is less of an issue with a filet of salmon.

So, after using up half a packet it’s a good idea to take out the remaining salmon and wrap it in cling film/plastic wrap before putting it back in the fridge

How Many Oz of Salmon Should You Eat

Planning out meals is a good idea so that you can buy enough groceries for a set period of time like a week or two weeks. Salmon is a great source of many beneficial nutrients and can be eaten raw or cooked. So, here’s how many oz of salmon you should eat.

On average, you should eat about 3-ounce serving (85g) of salmon for adults, and children should eat 1 oz (28g) per day. This amount of salmon allows you to eat another meal with meat or fish and still be within the recommended range of meat and fish per day according to the American Heart Association

Therefore, for a whole week of eating salmon in one meal each day, you should get about 21 oz (600g) of salmon. Salmon lasts as long as a week in the fridge. However, like many foods, it’s best cooked or eaten raw rather than freezing and unfreezing it.

Is it possible to eat too much salmon? 

While salmon is highly nutritious, it is possible to consume too much of any food, including salmon. 

Here are a few considerations regarding the potential risks of excessive salmon consumption:

Mercury and Contaminant Exposure

Salmon, especially larger species, can contain trace amounts of environmental contaminants such as mercury or selenium. These contaminants can accumulate in the body over time and may pose health risks, like inflammation if consumed in excessive amounts.

To mitigate this risk, choose wild salmon, which tends to have lower levels of contaminants compared to farm-raised salmon, and vary your seafood choices to reduce exposure.

Omega-3 Fatty Acid Intake

Salmon is known for its high omega-3 fatty acid content, particularly eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). These Omega-3 fatty acids are beneficial as can potentially lower the risk of chronic conditions like depression, stroke, and Alzheimer’s disease.

However, consuming excessive amounts can lead to an imbalance in your overall fatty acid profile. It’s recommended to follow dietary guidelines or consult with a healthcare professional to determine appropriate omega-3 fatty acid intake for your specific needs.

Caloric and Nutrient Balance

Salmon is a nutrient-dense food, but it also contains calories. Consuming excessive amounts of salmon, especially if it leads to an imbalance in your overall caloric intake, may contribute to weight gain or interfere with the balance of other essential nutrients in your diet. 

Individual Dietary Needs

The appropriate amount of salmon to consume varies depending on factors such as age, sex, activity level, overall health, and dietary goals. It’s advisable to consult with a registered dietitian or healthcare professional who can assess your individual needs and provide personalized recommendations.

In summary, while salmon is a nutritious food, it’s important to consume it in moderation as part of a well-balanced diet. By varying your seafood choices, considering potential contaminants, and ensuring overall dietary balance, you can enjoy the benefits of salmon while minimizing potential risks associated with excessive consumption.

What can I eat instead of salmon?

If you’re looking for alternatives to salmon, there are various other types of fish and seafood, as well as plant-based options, that you can consider. 

Here are some alternatives that offer different flavors and nutritional profiles:

Other Fish:

  • Trout: Similar to salmon, trout is a fatty fish with a mild and delicate flavor.
  • Mackerel: Mackerel is rich in omega-3fatty acids and has a stronger flavor compared to salmon.
  • Sardines: Sardines are small oily fish that are packed with nutrients and have a distinct flavor. They are commonly available canned.

White Fish:

  • Cod: Cod is a mild-flavored white fish that is versatile and can be used in various recipes.
  • Haddock: Haddock has a slightly sweet flavor and firm texture, making it suitable for baking, frying, or grilling.
  • Halibut: Halibut is a meaty white fish with a mild taste and firm texture.

Shellfish:

  • Shrimp: Shrimp is a popular shellfish that is versatile and can be used in various dishes such as stir-fries, pasta, and salads.
  • Scallops: Scallops have a delicate and sweet flavor, and they can be seared, grilled, or used in seafood stews.

Plant-Based Options:

  • Tofu: Firm or smoked tofu can be marinated and grilled to provide a protein-rich alternative.
  • Tempeh: Tempeh is a fermented soybean product that has a nutty flavor and can be used as a protein source in various dishes.
  • Portobello Mushrooms: Portobello mushrooms have a meaty texture and can be grilled or roasted as a savory alternative.

Remember to consider your dietary preferences, nutritional needs, and any specific dietary restrictions when selecting alternatives to salmon. 

Exploring a variety of options can help you discover new flavors and textures to enjoy in your meals. 

5 Healthy Alternatives If you don’t like Salmon

You can still maintain or improve your heart health and overall wellbeing even if you don’t like those salmon fillets!

Rainbow Trout

Rainbow trout is a fish closely related to salmon and offers similar health benefits. It is a good source of high-quality protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and essential nutrients like vitamin D and selenium. Trout has a mild, delicate flavor and is often cooked by grilling, baking, or pan-searing.

Sardines

Sardines are small, oily fish that are packed with nutrition. They are an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D, calcium, and protein. They also contain a good amount of vitamin B12 and selenium.

You can enjoy them canned in water, oil, or tomato sauce, and are often used in salads, sandwiches, or added to pasta dishes.

Tilapia

It is a lean, white fish that is widely available and relatively affordable. While it has a milder flavor compared to salmon, tilapia is a good source of protein and provides essential nutrients such as selenium, vitamin B12, and phosphorus. It is versatile and can be baked, grilled, or pan-fried.

Barramundi

Barramundi is a sustainable fish with a mild, buttery flavor. It is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, high-quality protein, and essential nutrients like potassium and vitamin B12. Barramundi can be prepared in various ways, including grilling, baking, or pan-searing.

Quinoa (Plant Based)

If you’re looking for a plant-based alternative, quinoa is a nutritious option. It is a complete protein, providing all essential amino acids, and is also high in fiber, iron, magnesium, and several other nutrients. Quinoa can be cooked and used as a base for salads, served as a side dish, or incorporated into various recipes as a protein-rich grain alternative.

These alternatives offer their own unique flavors, textures, and nutritional profiles, making them healthy choices to incorporate into your meals as alternatives to salmon.

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