Despite Sushi’s Popularity, Is It Healthy?

Despite its long history, sushi didn’t gain popularity in the United States until Japanese American immigrants introduced and popularized it after World War II. However, sushi’s appeal has significantly grown over time. According to Google Trends data, its popularity has doubled compared to five years ago and has more than tripled compared to a decade ago. At least 5 million Americans enjoy sushi at least once a month in trendy sushi restaurants across the country today. Apart from its widespread popularity, experts also highlight the numerous health benefits of sushi.

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How Healthy Is Sushi?

Sushi is a healthy choice, says Abbie Gellman, MS, a registered dietitian. The fish in sushi, like salmon and tuna, contain omega-3 fatty acids for heart and brain health, notes Karen Collins, MS, a nutrition adviser. Sushi’s benefits come from fish and seaweed, according to Josh Redd, NMD. Seaweed (nori) provides antioxidants and essential vitamins. Sushi also offers vitamin D, B vitamins, and iodine for bone health and energy. Sashimi is a low-calorie option without rice. Redd advises avoiding calorie-rich rolls with tempura and cream cheese, suggesting cucumber, avocado, and seaweed substitutes.

Is Sushi Effective For Weight Loss?

Sushi aids weight loss by providing protein while reducing calories, says Collins. It pairs well with nutrient-rich options like vegetables and whole grains. Unlike fried seafood, sushi fish is cooked without oil or butter, resulting in a low-calorie count. An entire avocado or cucumber sushi roll has only 135 calories, making it a healthier choice than breaded fish.

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Sushi: How Often Should You Eat It?

Sushi is a convenient way to increase seafood intake, aligning with the government’s dietary guidelines. However, caution is needed with raw fish due to bacteria concerns. Choosing reputable sources that properly handle and refrigerate raw fish is essential to minimize the risk of foodborne illness.