Seafood like crab, prawns, shrimp, scallops, lobster, mussels are not only delicious. They also are packed with vitamins, minerals and healthy fish oils with Omega-3. All shellfish also contain selenium, and a powerful antioxidant and trace mineral.
If you include one portion of seafood in your diet every week, you may cut your chances of suffering a heat attack in half! This is all because of the presence of Omega-3, a healthy fatty acid known to help heart health. Omega-3 also has anti-inflammatory properties to fight conditions like arthritis.
When to enjoy shellfish?
Some have said that oysters should be eaten only in months with the letter “R” (September through April) because of their texture and flavour. But with new varieties in Canada, you can buy good oysters all year round. A good new rule is: enjoy Canada’s east coast oysters from October to mid-February and west coast oysters from mid-February to October.
Check out our seafood primer for what’s best, why and how to enjoy!
Crab is a 10-legged crustacean that has a soft delicate taste and is used in cooking around the world. They are high in protein, Omega-3 and minerals: chromium, calcium, copper and zinc. There are different varieties. Backfin is particularly good in salads, dips and crab cakes.
Enjoy – Shredded in a salad, as part of a fish taco with coleslaw, or cooked as crab cakes.
Squid and Calamari may be ugly to look at when swimming in the ocean but delicious if cooked properly! Both are squid, but calamari is more tender and expensive. Low in calories, they are a good source of protein, Omega-3, copper, zinc, B vitamins and iodine.
Enjoy – In a pasta dish in a white wine cream sauce, deep fried with garlic mayo or try them sautéed in olive oil with garlic and parsley.
Oysters contain large amounts of the amino acid tyrosine that helps improve mood and regulates stress. They have more zinc than most other foods – which supports reproductive function – especially in men. They’re also a great source of vitamins A, C and B12, zinc, protein, Omega-3 and bone-building calcium!
Enjoy – Often enjoyed raw, true oyster lovers “shuck” the oyster right from the half shell using a special knife, sprinkled with sea salt and lemon, and swallow whole.You can also steam them in beer or wine, like mussels. Classic Oysters Rockefeller, are on a half shell and topped with a mixture of spinach, butter, garlic and bread then baked.
Mussels have the highest level of Omega-3 out of the shellfish and are rich in folic acid and vitamin B12. Their high levels of iodine make them perfect for those with thyroid issues.
Enjoy – Steam in wine with butter and chopped garlic. Serve with the juice and crispy French bread.It is also nice when added to Spanish Paella.
Scallops are a true delicacy from the Maritimes and a great source of protein, Omega-3, B vitamins, magnesium and potassium.
Enjoy – Sautéed gently in white wine and butter.
Shrimp/Prawns are very similar. Low in calories and fat, shrimp contains zinc, iodine, selenium, with a high Omega-3 content.
Enjoy – A classic appetizer, with seafood dip and often added to pasta and salads. During BBQ season, grill some up and serve with spicy Thai sauce.