Seafood Benefits for Adults
Eat Seafood to Improve Your Health
Fight Depression and Accelerated Brain Aging
The omega-3s found in seafood are a key component of a brain-healthy diet. Studies have shown that people who don’t have enough omega-3s are more likely to develop depression. And, for those who have depression, studies have shown that the omega-3s, which are found in seafood, can improve the symptoms.iv
Additionally, researchers recently looked at late middle aged adults without dementia to see how the levels of omega-3s in their blood are related to signs of future dementia. Adults with the lowest amount of the fish-based omega-3, DHA, in their blood had smaller brain volumes and poorer performance in tests of visual memory; abstract thinking; and planning, organization, and carrying out of tasks than adults with higher DHA levels. The smaller brain volume from low omega-3 levels speeds up brain aging by about two years. So take control of your heart health – it’s as easy as eating 2 or 3 seafood meals each week!
Eating seafood also improves heart health and reduces risk for heart disease. Learn more about seafood and heart health.
Seafood During Pregnancy Benefits
Healthy Choices for Mom & Baby
Eat At Least 2 Servings of Seafood per Week to Boost Babies’ Brain Development
Choosing the right foods during pregnancy can make a big difference in your baby’s health and growth. Seafood is an essential part of a healthy diet for you and your unborn child or breastfed baby. The recent Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend pregnant and breastfeeding women eat 2 to 3 servings of seafood per week to improve babies’ eye and brain development. It is so important that the Dietary Guidelines for Americans suggest pregnant and breastfeeding women should eat no less than 8 ounces (2 servings) of seafood each week.
To get the recommended amounts and the health benefits, eat a variety of seafood, which can include all types of tuna – white (albacore) and light canned tuna. Pregnant women can eat up to 6 ounces of white (albacore) tuna per week.
There are only four fish to avoid during pregnancy and breastfeeding; shark, swordfish, king mackerel and tilefish. Most women in the U.S. already do not eat these types of seafood. If you are not pregnant or breastfeeding, there are no types of commercial seafood to avoid.
Besides providing healthy omega-3s, another important nutrient provided by seafood is protein. However, all protein sources aren’t alike. Many high protein foods also happen to have a lot of unhealthy saturated fat and cholesterol. So when choosing which foods to eat, consider a low-calorie option such as tuna. One serving of protein-rich canned or pouch tuna is lower in total fat, saturated fat and cholesterol than an equal serving of beef, pork, chicken or lamb.
ii Horn, L. V., PhD, RD., McCoin, M., MPH, RD., Kris-Etherton, P. M., PhD, RD., Burke, F., MS, RD.,Carson, J. A. S., PhD, RD., Champagne, C. M., PhD, RD., Sikand, G., MA, RD. (2008, February). The Evidence for Dietary Prevention and Treatment of Cardiovascular Disease. Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 108(2).
iiiLloyd-Jones D, Adams R, Brown T,. et al. Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics 2010 Update: A Report from the American Heart Association Statistics Committee and Stroke Statistics Subcomittee. Circulation. 2010; 121:e1-e170
iv PubMed. The efficacy of omega-3 supplementation for major depression: a randomized controlled trial. Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20584525. Accessed March 6, 2012.