Seafood forms a major part of the diet of the people in Japan and several other Asian countries. It has been observed that the incidence of heart diseases and certain cancers is significantly low among these communities.
It is believed that seafood helps these people to lead a healthy life. Often fear of water contamination and high mercury levels in the seawater inhibit us from having seafood. However, the Institute of Medicine assures us that the benefits of eating seafood might outweigh the dangers associated with toxicity of seawater.
Good for the heart
To keep heart diseases at bay, consume seafood at least twice every week. Seafood is one of the richest sources of omega-3 fatty acids. It also contains very little saturated fat and cholesterol. To extract maximum benefits from seafood, instead of sticking to a single type of seafood, you should include variety of seafood in your diet.
Sea fish, such as salmon, tuna and sardine are packed with high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids. However, they might contain saturated fat and cholesterol. Shellfish and crustaceans, on the other hand, have less saturated fat but more cholesterol. However, by having different types of fatty fish, shellfish and crustaceans, you can have a more balanced heart friendly meal.
Diet for pregnant women
Pregnant women could obtain significant amount of nutrients from seafood. Omega-3 fatty acids are especially beneficial during pregnancy. During pregnancy, a woman could consume between 6 to 12 ounces of seafood every week. To avoid mercury contamination, it is advised to avoid big predatory fish such as king mackerel, swordfish or shark
Omega-3 fatty acid present is seafood prevents inflammation of the airways. Seafood is therefore effective in preventing asthma in children.
Improves mental health
Consumption of seafood is good for your mental health. Women who eat seafood during pregnancy are less likely to develop depression after delivery. Omega-3 fatty acid prevents age-related destruction of brain cells. Seafood can prevent dementia. It might even prevent Alzheimer’s disease.
Good for bones
Vitamin D present in the seafood is needed for healthy bones. Fatty fishes are especially rich in vitamin D.