Most average people try to stay healthy, at least most of the time. We all want to feel better and healthier, and find ways to optimize our lives. This is what biohacking all about. Through biohacking, or continuous self-improvement, we can use scientific knowledge to increase our performance, stay fit, and ultimately feel better so we can truly enjoy our lives and get more done.
As an avid BioHacker, I’ve found a great deal of scientific research demonstrating the healing power of eating a nutritious diet. I’m therefore always interested in companies that promote healthy food products that not only taste good, but also satisfy our body’s need for key nutrients.
Two of those critical key nutrients, validated by numerous studies, are the polyunsaturated Omega 3 fatty acid, which is most often found in oily fish, especially in Salmon. The other key nutrient we all require is protein. Our body requires us to replenish its supply of both these nutrients (among others) on a daily basis.
But why all the fuss about Omega 3? Why is it so important to our health?
Well, in a nutshell, Omega 3 is considered part of two Essential Fatty Acids, or EFA’s, that humans and other animals cannot product or synthesize and therefore must be obtained from food because they are necessary for good health. I repeat, humans must consume these fats from their diet.
What about protein? Why is that so important?
Protein is another key nutrient that our body cannot produce or synthesize on its own (eg. it must come from our diet). This means we must make sure that our daily meals include foods that contain sufficient amounts of protein or our health will suffer. On average an adult man requires 56 grams (g) of protein per day, and an adult woman 46 grams (g).
Is there a type of food that contains both these key nutrients in the right amounts?
The answers is yes. Our planet is home to a type of fish (Salmon) that provides both of these key nutrients in the quantities required for keeping us healthy. It’s almost as if the universe designed this fish to perfectly to meet our needs. And, I’ll be focusing further on the specific benefits of one type of salmon, and that is Wild Pacific Sockeye Salmon.
This particular salmon has long been at the heart of the culture and livelihood of coastal dwellers in the Northern Pacific. For many centuries, people, and especially indigenous communities, caught salmon as they swam upriver to spawn, and for many salmon is considered a vital part of their diet and mythology.
But aren’t Wild Pacific Sockeye Salmon endangered or on the decline?
It’s true that Salmon, as a species, has faced significant declines over the past 20-30 years. Historically, there has always been enough salmon, as people would not over fish, and only took what they needed. To address the need for better sustainability of salmon stocks, the Vancouver Aquarium initiated an innovative program called Ocean Wise. The Ocean Wise program is aimed at promoting sustainable seafood in restaurants, markets, and other food service facilities. It works directly with food service companies to select sustainable seafood and actively promote them to the general public in order to help consumers make environmentally friendly seafood choices.
So what’s a quick an easy way to include Salmon at barbecues, picnics, breakfasts and more?
In my journey of seeking out sustainable natural food that caters to my paleo / low-carbohydrate / ketogenic diet, I’ve come across a very innovative local Pacific Sockeye Salmon Sausage product made by Simply West Coast.
Simply West Coast is a subsidiary of Cold Fish Seafoods Inc., a boutique fishing company in the heart of Burrard inlet in Vancouver. Cold Fish Seafoods Inc. is listed as a supplier on the Ocean Wise website. Simply West Coast’s motto is “fresh, natural, sustainably sourced“. It’s a simple approach is that “seafood done simply, is simply done better“, and that “anyone could enjoy a gourmet seafood experience no matter where they are“.
So on a lazy Saturday morning I turned on the stove and opened a package of the ORIGINAL series Pacific Salmon Sausages, which are made from Ocean Wise certified Wild Sockeye Salmon together with fresh lemon and roasted garlic. I found that there were two additional available flavours: JALAPENO with the spicy kick of jalapeno, and MAPLE with natural maple and apple flavour, which I hope to sample at some point in the future.
Now as I said, first off in order to take care of the sustainability question I made sure that these sausages were certified Ocean Wise. I even double checked on Ocean Wise’s website and found that the Salmon they that Simply West Coast uses does in fact qualify. In addition the salmon they use is wild, so it’s certified non-GMO.
Secondly I noticed that the product had a freezer best before date of nearly a whole year, which works perfectly for me. I want a product I can have in my freezer whenever I need it, especially at a drop of a hat.
Because I’m focused on a clean paleo / low-carb diet, I did get excited when I read that everything they’ve used is all natural, and that the protein content for each sausage was a whopping 12 grams (g). Also, each sausage only clocked in at a low 80 calories a piece. Compare that to the 100-140 calories you consume with an ordinary specialty sausage.
In addition, each sausage contained 300 milligrams (mg) of Omega 3. To put this into perspective, if you ate all 4 sausages (Totaling 272 g (9.6 oz)) in a single package, not only would be enjoying your meal, but at the same time ingesting an insane 48 grams (g) of protein…practically your entire daily requirement of this key nutrient. Oh! And not only that, you would have consumed 1200 milligrams of Omega 3, give you pretty close to your daily requirement for this nutrient too!
For those of you who favor the health benefits of eating a low-carbohydrate diet, the package nutritional facts state it has 0 sugars and 0 fibre…leaving me to believe that the carbs are <1% and therefore technically don’t register in any meaningful way.
For those who have a gluten intolerance, well these sausages are completely gluten free. It’s also low in Sodium, and a good source of Thiamin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, Phosphorus, and most importantly Selenium.
To cook from frozen I chose to panfry them for 7 minutes over medium high heat. The alternative was to barbecue them for the same duration, but since we lost our patio furniture and grill in the condo fire we haven’t had the opportunity or funds to replace them. Just a note, remember to turn them frequently as they cook brown very quickly. Ideally cook to an internal temperature of 145°F. I did follow the instructions and added 1 teaspoon oil, but found that was really overkill. You practically only need 1/2 or even 1/4 a teaspoon of oil, if that.
If you want to cook them in an oven, simply preheat to 400°F, place sausages on a greased tray and cook for approximately 25 minutes or to an internal temperature of 145°F, turning the sausages after 12 minutes.
To be honest, I was a little skeptical at first about whether the sausages could even stay together given how flaky and moist Salmon gets when you cook it, but I was pleasantly surprised. Not only did they cook evenly through, but they held together just fine with the natural seaweed casing.
Don’t be alarmed if you hear lot’s of sizzling and spitting coming from the pan when you drop the frozen sausages in. That’s just because there’s a huge temperature difference between the sausages and the hot pan. It’ll eventually simmer down and cook normally.
To be honest, our basement suite did start to smell a bit after frying the sausages, but running an kitchen exhaust fan did the trick. I did notice some white frothy stuff coming out the sides of each sausage, but simply assumed it was just excess fat from the Omega 3 rich salmon.
I think there’s nothing like hearing the sound of sausages sizzle as they cook, so I do recommend you watch the following video.
I did check into the ingredients and there’s a lot more to them that I originally thought. I found that not only do they contain Pacific Salmon, but also Alaskan Pollock, along with a small smidge of various spices and natural flavoring, including Sea Salt, Lemon Juice, Rice Bran Oil, Onion Powder, Roasted Garlic, Brown Sugar, Vegetable Extracts of (Tomato, Mushroom, Onion, Carrot And Celery), Potato Extract, Yeast Extract, Arrowroot, Natural Smoke Flavour, Oleoresin Paprika, Calcium Lactate, and a Calcium Alginate gel like Casing.
So what’s the verdict?
Well, they are absolutely delicious. Light, moist and flaky on the inside, with a “melt-in-your-mouth” consistency, as the natural seaweed casing keeps everything perfectly together but dissolves gently without any effort on your part.
Overall I rate these sausages a solid 5 out of 5 stars due to their affordable cost (only $6.99), low-carbohydrate status, being low-carb / ketogenic / paleo diet friendly, quick cooking time, extended freezer lifespan, superb taste, low calorie content, high protein and more than adequate Omega 3 nutritional value.
So where can you buy them and what do they typically cost?
You can buy these scrumptious delectable Salmon Sausages at many local stores. Simply West Coast as an interactive map that shows local retailers that carry the brand. Simply enter your postal code and voilà, you get a complete list. Check out the map here: http://simplywestcoast.com/stores/
I did some basic research on pricing, and found that the local Fresh Street Market near my home in Surrey has it listed for $6.99 plus tax. I’d imagine that most stores would keep their pricing competitive as well.
So, to end…if you’re in the mood to boost your brain and body health while enjoying a delicious meal, simply add these delightful easy-to-cook Salmon Sausages to your next meal. And, according to the American Heart Association, eating at least two servings of protein like what’s contained in these healthy Salmon Sausages should be a regular part of your daily diet.