The benefits of eating sustainable seafood

The benefits of eating sustainable seafood

Want to feed your family something that is delicious, nutritious and sustainable? Try wild seafood — when sourced responsibly, it is healthy for you and for the planet.

Wild seafood is a renewable resource that requires minimal freshwater to produce, emits little carbon dioxide, uses no arable land, and produces a lean protein at a cost-per-pound that is lower than other animal proteins.

Seafood is also rich in nutrients and filled with healthy omega-3 fats. Omega-3 can help lower the risk of heart disease, is linked to brain development in infants, and research shows it can play a role in lowering the risk of cancer, dementia, Alzheimer’s and depression.

Health Canada recommends eating at least two servings of seafood a week, which will allow you to get the nutritional benefits that are found in food sourced from the ocean.

But ensuring seafood is sustainable has becoming an increasingly important issue.

“When you are planning your next meal, remember that not all seafood is created equal,” explains Josh Laughren, executive director of Oceana Canada. “Some seafood has a bigger environmental impact and often can’t be consumed sustainably.”

Eating sustainably usually means choosing food that takes into consideration the long-term preservation of our planet’s resources. Sustainable food is generally very good for you, and there are even more health benefits from choosing sustainable seafood.

“To find more seafood that is healthy for the oceans, check with your local grocer and favourite restaurants to see if they buy from sustainable fisheries,” recommends Laughren.

Here’s a list of some great seafood options that will help keep you and the oceans healthy:

Dungeness crab. Try this sustainable seafood in pasta recipes or on its own with butter. Look for Dungeness crab trap-caught in Canada, California, Oregon or Washington.

Sablefish. This fish is considered a delicacy in many countries. A great source of omega-3 fatty acids, sablefish is perfect for grilling, smoking, frying or serving as sushi.

Swordfish. This large fish is often sold as steaks and its relatively firm meat makes it ideal for cooking over the grill. Make sure it is caught by harpoon or handline and is from Canada or the United States.

Hand-dug clams. This tiny seafood is a big source of iron, protein, calcium, zinc, vitamin B and omega-3 fatty acids. Clams are delicious eaten raw, steamed, boiled, baked, fried or in a hearty bowl of clam chowder.

Spot prawns. Trap-caught prawns from the Canadian Pacific are considered sustainable, cook quickly and easily and are great in soups, pastas, stir-fries or on their own with butter.

Learn more about sustainable seafood at www.oceana.ca. www.newscanada.com

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