There are many benefits to having an extensive source of seafood in your diet. Many health blogs put too much emphasis on fatty fish, like salmon (which is very healthy for you). Unfortunately, they often neglect to mention the many other healthy options that the sea offers.
One of these great options of the sea is the mussel. These are small, meaty, bivalve mollusks that are packed with nutrients.
A 100g serving of cooked mussels provides more than your daily required value of manganese, selenium, and vitamin B12 (a whopping 340% of your daily value). They’re also a good source of folate, iron, phosphorus, riboflavin, thiamin, vitamin C, and zinc. What’s more is they’re high in omega 3!
Click here for the full breakdown of mussels nutritional values.
One of the big benefits of mussels nutrition is the high level of protein. A 100g serving provides almost half of your daily value of protein. Protein is essential for energy, muscle function, the overall function of your body. On top of this, eating protein sends a signal to the brain telling it that you’re satisfied, reducing the sense of hunger for longer.
Hunger is a big problem, and it contributes to overeating and weight gain. Hunger itself isn’t bad. It’s the brain’s way of signaling that it lacks nutrients/energy to fuel the body. The problem arises when we fill the body with highly processed garbage that lacks the nutrients the body needs, resulting in a shorter period of satiety. However, when you ensure you’re getting adequate levels of protein (from good sources), your body and brain will feel satisfied far longer.
You’re probably not lacking in manganese. It’s readily available in many plants, but it is less common to see substantial levels of the mineral in meat, so it’s worth noting.
Manganese, though easy to find in food, still is important. It works as an antioxidant in the body. Manganese antioxidants step in when enzymatic antioxidants aren’t enough. It’s like a backup defence system for your body.
Manganese has several other benefits too! This mineral is a binding agent, and is often paired with calcium and iron. It plays a role in keeping calcium in your bones, which is why it’s found in many osteoporosis medications. It also increases glucose tolerance and insulin secretion, lowering blood glucose levels.
You can click here to read more about the benefits of manganese, and the possible side effects of getting too much manganese in your diet.
This is another mineral that works as an antioxidant. It’s been shown to reduce your risk of DNA damage, slow the progression of AIDS, reduce your risk of developing certain cancers, and increases fertility. In short, it’s an important mineral to have in your diet.
That being said, there are dangers of getting too much selenium in your diet. You can read more about these risks, as well as the benefits of selenium by clicking here.
Many people aren’t getting enough B12 in their diet. This is especially common for vegetarians and vegans, or if you have a poor diet. This is an important one, so it’s great that mussels are such a great source.
Vitamin B12 improves red blood cell formation, supports the brain and nervous system, as well as supporting the overall function of the body. A deficiency can cause anxiety and depression, fatigue, lack of focus, and many other health problems.
You may need to look at your folinic acid (folate) levels if you’re increasing your vitamin B12 intake. You can read more about their relationship here.
We started off by mentioning how much praise fatty fish like salmon gets. This is largely because of the high levels of omega-3. Well, mussels are yet another great source of this fatty acid. Most people’s omega-3 to omega-6 ratios are completely out of whack. That’s because most foods are far higher in omega-6. While both fats are important, it’s more important that you’re getting a fairly even ratio of the two. When the ratio is matched these oils significantly reduce inflammation and support optimum health, but when they get out of sync, they can make inflammation worse.
These are just the benefits from mussels most prominent nutrients. We could really go on and on about how great mussels are for your health, but we think you get it at this point. Add mussels to your good whole food diet today!