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Cod Vs Salmon Which Fish is Healthier?

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🎯 Key Points
  • Cod is lower in calories and fat compared to salmon.
  • Salmon is higher in omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial for heart health.
  • Cod is a good source of lean protein, while salmon provides more vitamin D and B vitamins.
  • Salmon contains more antioxidants, such as astaxanthin, than cod.
  • Both fish are nutritious options, but salmon may have slight advantages in terms of overall health benefits.

Cod belongs to the genus Gadus while salmon belongs to the family Salmonidae. Both fish are healthy, cod is a white fish and salmon is an orange fish, both are appreciated for their flavor, price and nutritional values, but white fish are generally considered healthier, is it true? 

We are going to compare both fish, both are a good protein source, a source of protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and are also excellent sources of vitamin B12 and selenium.


  • The protein content in Pacific cod is 18 grams per 100 gram serving.
  • Atlantic salmon provides 20 g of protein per 100 grams .


Cod is a low-calorie fish compared to salmon.

  • Cod contains only 82 calories, while salmon contains more than twice as many calories in the same serving as cod.
  • A 100 gram serving of salmon has 208 calories.


Although salmon contains more saturated fat than cod, salmon has higher amounts of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids compared to cod.

  • Cod contains 221 milligrams of omega-3 fatty acids per 100 grams, while the same serving of salmon contains 2,260 milligrams .
  • Salmon contains 666 milligrams of omega-3 fatty acids per 100- gram serving, while cod contains only 6 milligrams.


Cod contains comparatively less cholesterol, 43 grams, compared to salmon, which contains 55 grams per 100-gram serving.

cod vs salmon

Vitamins and minerals.

100g of Atlantic cod provide:

(In % of the RDA for a diet of 2000 Kcal/day for an adult)

  • Vitamin D 9%
  • Vitamin B3 11%
  • Vitamin B6 10%      
  • Vitamin B12 32%
  • Hill 10%
  • Magnesium 8%         
  • Phosphorus 14%
  • Potassium 21%
  • Selenium 51%

100g of wild Atlantic salmon provides:

(In % of the RDA for a diet of 2000 Kcal/day for an adult)

  • Vitamin B1 20%
  • Vitamin B2 32%
  • Vitamin B3 52%
  • Vitamin B6 63%
  • Vitamin B12 133%
  • Magnesium 8%         
  • Phosphorus 29%
  • Potassium 10%
  • Selenium 52%


The mercury content in cod is moderate. Salmon is low in mercury, but excessive consumption of salmon can lead to increased mercury levels. In addition, the contamination factor in salmon includes PCBs, metformin, and other substances.

Bottom Line.

They are both healthy and interesting fish. We could say that cod may be better for health than salmon, considering certain factors such as lower calorie and saturated fat content. However, if you are more focused on increasing your level of vitamins like B12 and folate and omega-3 fats,  then perhaps salmon is a better option. It is best that you intersperse both fish in your sports diet, opting to buy them in the market, to find them fresh and in season, at the best price. 

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Evidence Based

This content is based on scientific research and written by experts.

Our team of licensed health professionals, nutritionists and fitness experts endeavor to be unbiased, objective, honest and to present each sides of the argument.

This article contains scientific references. The numbers in the parentheses (1,2,3) are clickable links to peer-reviewed scientific researches.



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