Going on any kind of “diet” can be a hard decision to make, especially with all the options out there. Staying away from fad diets is always a good way to go, as they are usually not sustainable diets for long term goals. However, a twist on an oldie but goody vegetarian diet, is a healthy alternative that can come with some great benefits.
To fish or not to fish? A good question for anyone considering a pescatarian diet!
What is a pescatarian diet?
The pescatarian diet is a vegetarian diet with the inclusion of fish and seafood. This also means cutting out any land animals or birds.
These foods can be prepared in any way preferable, just not with ingredients from the usual Do-Not-Eat list of a vegetarian.
Another aspect of the pescatarian diet is eggs and dairy. While these are allowed on this fish diet, the consumption of these rests on the dieter and can be excluded if desired.
What can I eat?
The normal inclusion of fresh fruits and veggies are on the list, along with whole grains, nuts, seeds, and beans. Because animal protein are complete proteins, this helps meet daily protein requirements.
So are all fish and seafood on the list?
Not exactly. Things like shellfish are things to stay away from as they are “bottom feeders”. These animals living on the sea floor can be contaminated from heavy metals and ocean pollution and are not good for human consumption.
So can I eat fish all day everyday?
Maybe not the best idea. It’s recommended to not go overboard on fish because of the presence of mercury, especially in the larger fish.
Is it good for the whole family?
A heavy fish diet is not recommended for pregnant or nursing mothers or small children because of the mercury in fish tissue.
What are my benefits?
Eating fish can be a great source of protein and those omega-3s fatty acids that can help reduce blood fat (triglycerides) and ease joint stiffness and pain. Fish can also help to supply nutrients and especially iron, which vegetarians can sometimes lack.
The presence of EPA and DHA can help with inflammation and heart health. Also, DHA is essential for developing the brain and preserving cognitive function.
A boost in the immune system can come from fish, as well as helping to reduce the inflammation that can cause cancer.
All in all, a pescatarian diet can be a great way to go if you’re wanting to ditch other kinds of meat, for whatever reason. Remember to plan meals accordingly to avoid over eating fish with higher levels of mercury and tiring your taste buds. Let’s get fishy!
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