How healthy is sushi
Written by guest author N.P.Burggraaff
Sushi is known to be one of the healthiest meals. Sushi contains some great nutrients like omega 3 from the fatty fish, vitamins from vegetables and minerals from seaweed. Does this mean you can binge on sushi while watching your figure?
Unfortunately the answer is: no.
High quantities = high calories
Sushi is less healthy than you'd imagine for the following reasons. First of all, you can easily overeat. There are many "all you can eat" sushi places and let's be honest, when you can order what you want, you will order more than you normally would. You might think you are being healthy, but overeating on sushi rolls can contribute to a high intake of calories.
The second issue is that sushi appears healthy with small rolls of fish and vegetables. However, these are very small quantities. A good portion of fish is around 140 grams while one piece of sushi merely contains around 5 – 8 grams. The problem with sushi is the rice. The (white) rice that is used for sushi is often very refined and lacks vitamins and minerals. Aside from the lack of nutrients, it is often boiled to finish in water with added sweetened (rice) vinegar.
The average dinner would contain no less than 3 sushi rolls (note: refers to rolls and not per piece). One roll on average contains between 300 and 350 calories. Multiply this by 3 and it's almost 1000 calories!
A high intake of sodium
Next to the high calorie count, a typical sushi dinner contains a lot of sodium due to the soy sauce.
Should you stop eating sushi? Definitely not, but it is important to learn how to make good and healthy choices when ordering sushi.
Sushi healthy eating tips
The healthiest choice is sashimi; just pure fish. You can add some sodium soy sauce and wasabi to taste.
Ask for brown rice instead of white rice with your sushi rolls
Try to eat more raw or steamed fish and fewer rolls with rice
Pay attention to your overall quantity
Ask for your sushi to be prepared without mayonnaise, cream cheese or fried crispy
Choices that you should eat in moderation include:
- bluefin tuna (due to high values of mercury)
- tobiku sushi (high in saturated fats and cholesterol)
- eveything that has cream/mayonnaise
- California rolls as this contains a lot of mayonnaise
- regular soy sauce due to its high sodium values
- (obviously) fried sushi