What’s one of the most common New Year’s resolutions? To
eat healthier, of course. There’s lots of talk about the benefits of
seafood and there’s also a lot of confusing
information flying about. Here's how we see it:
Eating fish at least 2x per week has many health
It provides important nutrients for babies and children and
later reduces the risk of heart disease in adults. Full of protein and low in
saturated fat, seafood also scores high for vitamins and minerals.
The body needs healthy fats. Most seafood is
rich in omega-3 fatty acids which are necessary to build tissues and muscle.
These healthy oils also promote brain and eye development in children, increase
duration of gestation and benefit mature hearts. Because fattier fish contain
significant amounts of oil throughout their body tissues and belly cavity, and
have little connective tissue, their protein is easier to digest. Top fatty
salmon, sardines, kipper, eel, mackerel, herring and tuna.
Healthy fats from fresh, natural sources are most
They're also the easiest
for the body to absorb. Fresh seafood is most beneficial. For example, fresh
tuna has more omega 3s than canned tuna
according to research by Medical
and theFood Standards Agency.
A seafood rich diet is great for heart health. Reducing
the risk of heart disease may help prolong life after a heart attack and reduce
damage from heart disease as well as lowering blood pressure. Both the American
Heart Association and the American Stroke Association recommend eating fish
weekly to reduce the risk of coronary artery disease. Evidence also shows that
inflammatory diseases, arthritis and psoriasis all may improve by including
seafood in your diet.
FDA officials have testified that pound-for-pound, fish
is by far the safest source of muscle protein available.* However, some
consumers worry about environmental issues, from mercury levels to
sustainability. If you’re concerned, talk to your trusted fishmonger about
where a fish came from, how it was harvested and what potential risks may be
associated with it. The more education you receive, the more you can enjoy a
variety of different kinds of fish as part of a balanced diet. And keep in mind
that similar to chicken, the greatest risks from eating seafood come from
handling at home. Be sure to store fish at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or lower;
never mix cooked and fresh fish; and always wash your hands, cutting boards and
utensils before and after touching raw or cooked seafood.**
**More information at SeafoodHealthFacts.org