Although it might seem that fresh fish would a healthier choice than frozen, the truth is that both fresh and frozen fish can be healthy choices, as long as you store and prepare them properly. The freshness of the fish, along with how it was frozen and how quickly it was frozen, can impact its taste and texture, as well as its bacterial content.
Both fresh and frozen fish can spoil. Eating fish within a few days ensures that it doesn't have time to spoil. Store fresh fish for no longer than one to two days in the refrigerator before eating. Frozen fish can spoil if it thaws during transport. Look for signs of possible spoilage, such as rips or tears in the packaging. Don't refreeze seafood once it thaws. If you buy frozen fish, don't pick packages stored above the chill line. If fresh fish has an ammonia-like odor, it might be starting to spoil.
The debate between fresh and frozen fish is often one of nutritional value. We tend to think of fresher fish being more nutritious, but that may not be the case every time. While it is true that some nutrients may be lost while thawing out frozen fish, the amount is minimal. Often, fish that is farmed to be frozen (like Regal Springs’ Tilapia from Indonesia) is frozen within hours of coming out of the water, which allows the fish to retain as many nutrients as a fresh fish would. Of course, improperly thawing your fish or purchasing fish that hasn’t been frozen immediately after catching can inhibit the nutritional value, so always check where your fish is coming from.