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Is Trout Bad For You?



Short answer

Trout is quite nutritious. It is an excellent source of protein, is low in fat and is high in Omega 3 fatty acids. Trout also provides vitamins and minerals that fuel essential pathways in the body. Trout is low in mercury which is an additional benefit.



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Long answer

There are many species of trout with the most popular being rainbow trout.  Trout, in general, is a great source of protein.  All of our cells contain protein and we need protein to build and repair tissues, to assist with enzymatic functions and sustain balanced hormone production.  This macronutrient (a nutrient that is required in large amounts for the body) is important for work out recovery time and is a building block for our bones, muscles, cartilage, skin and blood. 

Excess protein is not stored in the body-unlike carbohydrates and fats.  For men and women that are sedentary, the recommended daily dose of protein would be around 0.36 grams per pound.  In a 180 pound man and a 130 pound woman, the daily recommended amounts would be 65 grams and 47 grams respectively.  A 3 ounce serving of rainbow trout delivers 20 grams of protein for only 140 calories.  For those individuals that are working out and staying active, their protein requirements will be higher. Trout is low in fat and a wonderful choice for individuals that are looking to lose weight and maintain muscle mass. The healthiest way to cook trout includes poaching, steaming, broiling, grilling or baking. Adding some lemon and some seasonings will add to the flavor without elevating the fat or calorie content. 

Trout is low in mercury (if farm raised) and is a wonderful source of Omega-3 essential fatty acids.  Omega-3 is an unsaturated fat that is not produced in the body and needs to be consumed in the diet. Omega-3s are essential components of cell membranes and are natural anti-inflammatories that protect the cardiovascular system. Omega-3s support a healthy blood pressure, help to decrease arterial plaque formation, help to decrease triglyceride levels and raise good cholesterol levels (HDL). Omega-3s are vital to brain function and have been found to help anxiety and depression. Omega-3s have been found to help the symptoms of ADHD in children. Research studies are demonstrating that higher Omega-3 intake is linked to decreased age-related mental decline and potentially a reduced risk of Alzheimer disease. Omega-3s are supportive of eye sight because they are a major component of the retina. Omega-3s are also showing promising results in the area of cancer research.

Wild trout is not a good source for Omega-6 which is also an essential fatty acid found in abundance in western diets. High levels of Omega-6 are felt to be associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, inflammatory disease, autoimmune disease and possibly certain cancers. Because of this, most medical professionals recommend lowering Omega-6 intake while increasing Omega-3 intake to strive for a ratio of 2(Omega-6s) to 1(Omega-3s).

Foods high in Omega-6’s include refined vegetable oils, dairy, eggs, nuts, salad dressings, fast food, cookies, cakes, processed foods, cereals, poultry, whole grain bread, butter and beef.  It should be noted that farm-raised fish are often fed food that is high in Omega-6 that will obviously increase Omega-6 levels in those fish.

Trout is also a good source of potassium, phosphorous, B complex vitamins and selenium.  Selenium is a powerful mineral that fuels detoxification pathways and boosts the immune system.  Selenium supports a healthy cardiopulmonary system and is a potent antioxidant. 

Overall, trout provides many health and nutrient benefits. 


  • provides many nutrients
  • high in omega-3 fatty acids
  • low in fat and cholesterol
  • high in protein

Our Wellness Pick (what is this?)

Safe Catch Elite Tuna

  • Low mercury
  • High protein
  • Gluten-free & Keto
  • Non-GMO & Kosher
  • Tested per can
Learn More!

Thank you for your feedback!

Written by Dr. Becky Maes
Published on: 06-11-2018
Last updated: 12-15-2023

Thank you for your feedback!

Written by Dr. Becky Maes
Published on: 06-11-2018
Last updated: 12-15-2023

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