10 Reasons Why You Must Love Seafood

Seafood is delicious, super healthy and easy to prepare. It is rich in nutrients and contains many vitamins and minerals, essential for our health. It is a staple in many countries around the world. Whether it is fish, lobster, crab or shrimp, all types of seafood are considered to be delicacies. Apart from its great taste, it has a whole host of other benefits.

Listed below are ten of the most beneficial qualities of seafood:-

  1. Rich in nutrients

Seafood is filled to the brim with nutrients that are extremely beneficial to our health. While it varies in different types of seafood, it has generally been found that seafood is rich in protein and many vitamins and minerals. Some are rich in Vitamin A, which boosts our immune system and protects our eyesight, some in Vitamin D, which is important for bone growth and calcium absorption.

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  1. Good for skin and hair

What we wouldn’t do to have flawless, glowing skin and lustrous tresses. Well, the answer is just to start eating seafood! Seafood rich in omega-3 acids like salmon, mackerel, and sardines is miracle workers for your skin and hair. Your skin is protected against UV rays, acne and nourished. Omega-3 is also found in the natural oils that keep your scalp moisturized.

  1. Preventing heart disease

Due to the abundance of omega-3 acids in seafood, it is instrumental in the prevention of heart disease too. Fish is considered the best food for improving cardiovascular health. Those who eat seafood regularly are at a much lower risk of getting heart attacks and strokes.

  1. Aids brain development

The omega-3 acids found in seafood are essential for brain development in infants and young children. Pregnant women are advised to consume fish that are rich in omega-3 acids. However, only the fishes at the bottom of the food chain should be consumed as they would not contain dangerous levels of mercury.

  1. Reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s

Researchers have found that consuming fish two to three times a week can reduce the risk of contracting neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s. Those who eat more fish have larger brain cells in those areas of the brain responsible for memory and learning. This slows down the effects of aging on the brain.

  1. Help with depression

Consumption of seafood has also been linked with prevention of depression. Omega-3 acids when combined with anti-depression medication, play a significant role easing depression. Simply put, those who consume more seafood are less likely to suffer from depression.

  1. Protects vision

Macular degeneration is a disease which causes vision impairment and loss in the elderly. Eating fatty fish rich in omega-3 acids reduces the risk of contracting macular degeneration by a large margin. Also, shellfish is helpful in boosting night vision.

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  1. Prevention of asthma

With our cities getting more and more pollutes, asthma has become a widespread disease, especially among children. The airways are chronically inflamed when someone has asthma. Studies have shown that consumption of seafood dramatically lowers the risk of asthma in children.

  1. Best source for Vitamin D

Vitamin D is an essential nutrient that many people are deficient in. While it can be increased by exposure to sunlight, this method may not always be viable. Apart from sunlight, fish is the best source of Vitamin D. Fatty fish and cod liver oil are the best available ways to increase Vitamin D content in our bodies.

  1. Benefits the immune system

Studies have found that consumption of seafood may lower the risk of rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis. It contains selenium, an antioxidant which is extremely beneficial to the immune system.

All of the above benefits can be reaped by consuming seafood just two to three times a week. Considering that it is simple to prepare and tastes delicious, eating seafood should be a pleasure!

How To Actually Eat Seafood

Seafood is a healthy and tasty delicacy, enjoyed by many. Be it fish, sushi, crab, lobster, shrimp, clams, oysters or mussels, seafood is delicious. Due to the many vitamins and minerals, it contains, it has many health benefits. Seafood is often recommended by doctors and is considered much healthier than sheep, pig or poultry.

While you may love eating seafood, the idea of consuming such a messy meal at a fancy restaurant may discourage you from ordering it. It can be quite an ordeal eating lobster or crab legs while dining with a date or a group of friends. Follow the tips below to look like a pro while eating seafood!

  1. Whole fish

While it is quite easy to eat neat little pieces of fish, eating a whole fish is a whole other ballgame. If a fish knife is provided, your task becomes easier. A fish knife typically has a dull edge, making it simpler to separate the meat and bone. If the head has not already been detached, you can remove it from behind the gills. The top fillet should be eaten starting from the head and moving down. To eat the underside of the fish, lift up the bone and slowly ease the meat out. Remember that the fish should never be flipped over. In case you ingest any bones, remove them with your fingers and place to the side.

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  1. Crab

The crab another challenging item to eat while trying to look elegant. To make matters worse, crab is often served with the shell intact. However, keeping in mind a few points, you can enjoy this dish without worrying about how you look while eating it. First, use your fingers to detach the legs and claws from the body. Using a nutcracker, break open the legs and claws. A seafood fork is usually provided with this dish. It can be used to remove the flesh. Break off the tail by twisting it with your fingers. Now, you can enjoy eating the meat with a fork.

  1. Shrimp

Shrimp is another favorite among seafood lovers. It can be prepared in a variety of different ways, each dish more delicious than the last. So why miss out on this delicacy? Follow these guidelines and enjoy your shrimp! If the tail is attached, shrimp can be eaten by holding the tail and eating with your fingers. Jumbo shrimp can be cut with your fork and eaten one bite at a time. If the tail isn’t attached, shrimp can also be eaten with a knife and fork.

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  1. Lobster

Lobster is a delicious dish, but it can be quite daunting to eat at a formal meal. It can be served either boiled, steamed or grilled. If the body flesh has been cut out of the shell, it becomes much easier for the diner. However, if it has not been cut out, follow these steps. Firmly twist the large claws off the lobster while holding it above the plate. Open the claws with a nutcracker, provided along with the dish. Proceed to extract the meat and use the tiny lobster fork to eat it. Next, twist the smaller claws and the tail off.  You can cut the tail into small pieces and eat with the fork. The meat can be sucked out from the smaller claws. Lastly, using the nutcracker, break the back shell and consume the meat with a fork.

Using the above tips and techniques, you can master the art of seafood eating with élan. So, next time you’re out for a formal dinner, don’t be afraid to order your favorite seafood dishes!

5 Seafood Dishes You’ll Be Glad to Avoid

Seafood is a nutrient rich food that contains a wide variety of vitamins and minerals. It is rich in omega-3 fatty acids which provide many health benefits like protection against heart diseases and stroke. Fish, in particular, is easy to digest and contains a mix of amino acids that is essential to our health. Researchers have found that seafood is a better option compared to sheep, cattle or poultry. However, it is essential to avoid certain kinds of seafood as they may be contaminated by environmental pollution or otherwise unfit for consumption.

Following are five seafood choices to be avoided at all costs:-

  1. Orange Roughy

The orange roughy lives a very long life and reproduces slowly. It has been overfished so much that the species is now on the brink of extinction. Its slow rate of reproduction also makes it much more susceptible to overfishing. Apart from the environmental aspect, the orange roughy also contains very high levels of mercury. Mercury has been linked to brain damage and is especially dangerous to pregnant women as it can affect the fetus or child’s neurological development. So, you should steer away from dishes containing the orange roughy.

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  1. Shark

While shark is a popular seafood choice in many parts of the world, it comes with its share of risks. Shark are apex predators and at the top of the marine food chain. This means they consume a variety of fishes. These fishes most likely contain mercury, and so sharks end up having dangerously high levels of mercury which is toxic to our health. Overconsumption of shark also has another adverse effect. Lesser sharks would mean an increase in the populations of cow nose rays, the primary food of sharks. These rays eat scallops and other fish consumed by humans. So, a decrease in the population of sharks would place great stress on fisheries all over the world.

  1. Atlantic Bluefin Tuna

The Atlantic Bluefin tuna is by far the most overharvested species of fish in the ocean. This enormous fish is widely used in sushi. It has been classified as critically endangered by the World Wildlife Fund, due to overfishing. This fish also has very high levels of mercury and may contain dangerous levels of PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls). PCBs are industrial chemicals which are not only bad for animals and the environment; they cause cancer and other serious health effects in humans too.

  1. Shrimp

Shrimp is another delicacy in many cuisines all around the world, be it America or Asia. However, not many know how risky it can be to eat shrimp, especially the imported variety. These crustaceans are often full of residue from chemicals used to clean their holding pens, dirt, mouse hair and insect pieces. In some varieties of imported shrimp, traces of E.coli have been found. Shrimp also contain very high levels of cholesterol, making this seafood choice extremely bad for your health.

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  1. Chilean Seabass

The Chilean Seabass also known as the Patagonian Toothfish are a variety of popular fish which are considered a delicacy. What people don’t know is that they contain high levels of mercury and other pollutants. Also, most of these fish used by restaurants or sold, are caught illegally.  According to the nonprofit organization, Greenpeace, unless people stop eating this fish, it will be extinct in the next five years.

Now that you know which dishes to keep away from, you can enjoy your seafood without fear for your health or the environment!

How Do Seafood Restaurants Get Fresh Seafood?

Seafood is a scrumptious delicacy in many parts of the world. It has a plethora of health benefits due to the many vitamins and minerals it contains. Researchers have found that consuming seafood regularly drastically reduces the risk of heart disease. It contains omega-3 acids which are a boon to our health. It protects against heart disease, joint related diseases, asthma and also prevents dementia and memory problems in the elderly. Seafood also keeps you looking good as it makes skin and hair look great. Apart from its varied health benefits, it is also delicious and a primary source of food in many cultures around the world. However, these benefits can only be reaped if the seafood is fresh. The fresher, the fish, is the better the taste.

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Seafood is now found in restaurants everywhere, not just in coastal cities. In the past, it used to be difficult to obtain fresh seafood in land locked cities, away from the coast. It would take weeks to get fish to inland cities, and by the time it reached, most of the produce would be spoilt and inedible. With the advent of air travel, this problem was reduced significantly. Now, fish caught in coastal cities can reach restaurants far inland in a matter of hours, thus preserving their freshness and so their taste. The costs involved in transporting the fish by air are very heavy. While big restaurants can manage the costs associated with having the fish flown in, it is often too expensive for smaller restaurateurs. The smaller restaurants manage by buying fresh produce from distributors located near them. Some restaurant owners also have relationships with fishermen who provide them with fresh produce. Others may even own fishing boats to make sure the fish is fresh.

Another challenge to restaurants is making sure the fish which is loaded onto the airplane is fresh. Most fishing boats stay out for days at a time, so the fish could be out of the water for many days before they are even loaded onto the plane. To tackle this problem, there are onboard ice machines. These machines contribute greatly to the freshness of the fish however even they can’t completely preserve the quality. So, the best solution to keep the produce fresh would be to procure fish from day boats and those who are at the top of the pile. Top of the pile fish would be those who have been fished last and thus, are the freshest. Day boats are the boats which go out only for one day at a time. This ensures that the fishes being loaded cannot be older than a day.

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When it comes to seafood, it is all about the timing. Both nutritional values, as well as the taste, will be diminished as time passes and the fish gets stale. Nowadays, with air travel and other means of preserving seafood, the freshness can be easily maintained. So you can go out and feast on seafood, knowing you are getting the freshest produce, regardless of where you live!