Americans eat more sugar than seafood, and fewer than one in ten eat seafood more than once per week, according to our friend Linda Cornish of the Seafood Nutrition Partnership, a non-profit organization committed to raising awareness about the health benefits of eating seafood.
It’s no secret that eating seafood is a smart choice for a healthy heart, a sharper brain, an improved memory and a longer life in general.
- It’s estimated that 50,000 deaths from heart disease and stroke are prevented each year by eating fish.
- Enjoying seafood 2-3 times a week reduces the risk of death by from any heart related cause by 17%.
- Eating seafood can reduce your risk of heart disease by 36%.
What words come to mind when thinking about fish? Lean protein, omega 3 fatty acids, and deliciousness would be among the top three. But concerns about mercury have kept many people from reaping the health benefits so abundant in fatty fish. Clarity is now coming to this topic. Dr. Nicholas Ralston, a mercury researcher, talks about how the mineral selenium has been too often overlooked in the fish/mercury discussion. Selenium is an essential trace mineral that functions as an antioxidant, promotes a healthy immune system, and helps fish get rid of stored and dangerous methyl mercury. So the more accurate way to evaluate a fish for safety is to look at the selenium-to-mercury ratio.
Fish with the highest selenium-to-mercury ratio, and thus safest to eat, are albacore, yellowfin and skipjack tuna. The traditional advice of limiting albacore tuna to six ounces a week needs a revision. Chinook, sockeye and coho salmon also have a highly favorable ratio. The message is clear: eat better fish.
In an effort to shine light on the complicated world of sustainable seafood, NOAA’s excellent FishWatch website has been upgraded and made mobile. It is a comprehensive source of information on species inhabiting US domestic waters. Last week Chain Link Research published a study of the changing food distribution system featuring Sea to Table. And a shout out to our friends at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs with whom we are partnering in the introduction of their new dining program. It is good to eat better fish.
Congratulations to Chef Bruce Kalman, whose Union Pasadena has been named second best Italian restaurant in Los Angeles. Back in NYC, Chef Michael Chernow of Meatball Shop fame continues to make waves with his fish sandwiches at Seamore’s. Michael was quoted as saying that “Fish and vegetables make up 90% of my diet. The other 10% is meatballs”.
All the best,
from the Dimin Family and the Sea to Table team