Seafood is delicious, but it isn’t for everyone. Some people might not like the fishy taste. However, seafood also has many health benefits. It might be enough to change your mind!
Compared to other meats, seafood is one of the most nutritious choices. Here are five awesome benefits of eating fish and shellfish.
5 Benefits Of Eating Seafood
1. Lowers Heart Disease Risk
The biggest advantage of seafood is cardiovascular protection. This is because fish is extremely high in omega-3 fats, a healthy fatty acid. Omega-3 can lower high cholesterol, blood pressure, and triglycerides. It also has a positive effect on plaque and blood clots, which prevents hardening of the arteries known as atherosclerosis. Even abnormal heartbeats, or arrhythmia, can be treated with omega-3.
All of these factors increase the risk for heart disease. But thanks to the omega-3 fatty acids in seafood, you’ll have heart healthy benefits.1
2. Helps Inflammation
Seafood is also good for you because it helps inflammation since the omega-3 fats are anti-inflammatory. It’s linked to reduced symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis or inflammation of the joints. It might even decrease the need for pain medication.
Even mussels have omega-3 fatty acids. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, consumption of seafood may help joint pain and stiffness in people with osteoarthritis.
Other inflammatory conditions like inflammatory bowel disease and painful menstruation can be relieved with omega-3 fats. So if you’re dealing with inflammation, add seafood to your diet.2
3. Maintains Mental Health
A surprising health benefit of seafood is the effect on the brain. It’s rich in docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), a type of omega-3 fatty acid. DHA is the most abundant fat in the brain
It also protects against mental conditions like attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, bipolar disorder, and depression.3 DHA works by controlling energy metabolism in the brain, which impacts pathways in the hippocampus.4
Omega-3 fats also offer cognitive protection. They can slow down an age-related decline, and therefore prevent Alzheimer’s and dementia.5
4. Eases Digestion
Compared to red meat and poultry, seafood has a less connective tissue. This is even more true for fatty fish like tuna and salmon. It’s much easier to digest, so it won’t make you feel heavy and
If you have a sensitive stomach, consider eating more seafood. It’ll prevent unpleasant stomach aches. Plus, bowel movements will feel more comfortable! Elders and children, who tend to have sensitive digestive systems, will also benefit from the easy digestion.
5. Provides Protein
According to the American Diabetes Association, fish and seafood are some of the healthiest protein sources.6 This is because they aren’t full of cholesterol and saturated fat. On the other hand, protein sources like red meat and pork have high amounts.
For example, one 3.5-ounce serving of cooked salmon will give you 20.7 grams of protein. You’ll also get omega-3 fats, vitamins, and minerals.
Your body needs protein to function. It’ll also increase satiety, so you’ll stay full for a long time. This will limit ravenous feelings and binge, and therefore help weight management.
You might be worried about mercury. To lower your chances of contamination, avoid seafood that is more likely to
Aim for two servings of fatty fish or seafood each week. Salmon, shrimp, albacore tuna, lake trout, herring, catfish, and sardines are tasty options.
|↑1, ↑2, ↑3, ↑5||Omega-3 fatty acids. University of Maryland Medical Center.|
|↑4||Cancelier, Kizzy, Lara M. Gomes, Milena Carvalho-Silva, Letícia J. Teixeira, Joyce Rebelo, Isabella T. Mota, Camila O. Arent et al. “Omega-3 fatty acids and mood stabilizers alter behavioural and energy metabolism parameters in animals subjected to an animal model of mania induced by fenproporex.” Molecular neurobiology (2016): 1-13.|
|↑6||Protein. American Diabetes Association.|