What food group is the perfect match for National Nutrition Month? It’s seafood! The National Nutrition Month campaign, created by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, helps raise awareness of the importance of making informed food choices and developing sound habits when it comes to eating and physical activity.
As if we need an excuse to eat more seafood, eating fish, shellfish and sea vegetables are easy ways to get the important nutrients, vitamins and essential omega-3s our bodies need. However, only 1 in 10 Americans actually follow the recommendation in the U.S. Dietary Guidelines to eat seafood at least twice a week. Nutrition experts recommend we get anywhere from 250 to 1,000 mg a day of the important omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA. Unfortunately, the average American intake right now is only about 90 mg per day.
We’re giving you a couple of the top reasons you should often choose seafood to be the main protein on your plate, plus some tips for eating healthier during National Nutrition Month:
- You Could Live Stronger and Longer. Eating seafood two to three times per week can help reduce the risk of death from any health-related cause by as much as 17%. And older adults who report high fish consumption have been shown to live longer.
- Seafood is the Premiere Food Source of Omega-3s. These essential fatty acids, particularly DHA and EPA, are beneficial throughout our entire life span, from pregnancy through childhood to older age. They aid brain and eye development in babies and heart and brain health in all of us. They also can help prevent depression.
- Limit Fried Seafood. It’s easy to resort to unhealthy meal choices, especially when dining out. Avoid added fat by choosing a dish that’s broiled, baked, grilled or steamed – that means limiting fried seafood to special occasions.
- Keep It Simple and Fun. Eating right doesn’t need to be complicated. Seafood is versatile, budget-friendly, quick and easy to make, and fun to enjoy anywhere. Try new seafood recipes with your kids, make “Fish Fridays” a regular event in your home and go for the seafood menu page when dining out.
Whether you’re an avid chef or a beginner in the kitchen, start including more seafood in your diet today and during National Nutrition Month – and throughout the year!