From its origins as a practical means to preserve fresh, raw seafood to the pop culture phenomenon and art form that it is today, sushi has had quite an impact on the world. Sushi has grown in popularity because it’s delicious and fun to eat, but its health benefits are scarcely considered. Sushi is actually extremely potent as a source of many vital nutrients, making it a verifiable health food. Below are 10 surprising health benefits of eating sushi.
The seaweed used in sushi is a good source of the vitamin iodine. (You may be familiar with salt containers advertising the iodine they contain). Iodine can help balance thyroid hormones and is an important nutrient overall.
Many of the ingredients in sushi (especially wasabi) are rich sources of antioxidants which can help slow the aging process in one’s body. Wasabi is a powerful anti-inflammatory ingredient; if you have looked into the causes of chronic illness, you likely know that inflammation is one of the primary causes of illness in the body.
The fish in sushi is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, which have a myriad of impressive health benefits. One of the most crucial benefits of omega-3’s are their ability to fight inflammation. They can also important for brain health,
In addition to helping regulate the thyroid gland, iodine can also regulate hormones in the body. Iodine is important for women especially as it regulates the production of estrogen and ensures that your body does not over-produce estrogen.
Sushi rolls are generally very low in calories and are high in protein. In addition, they contain mostly whole foods such as fish, rice, seaweed, and other vegetable ingredients.
Sushi contains plenty of HDL cholesterol — commonly known as “good” cholesterol. HDL is crucial in getting rid of excess fat in arteries, leading to better blood circulation throughout the body. Better blood circulation means less plaque buildup and less risk of heart disease.
Sushi can also help regulate blood glucose levels in the body — again by virtue of HDL cholesterol. HDL helps muscles function properly; your body’s muscles are linked closely to your body’s metabolic system. Muscles take calories to grow and maintain themselves (much more than fat) which means that the more muscle your body has, the more calories it naturally burns. HDL helps decrease fat storage in the body and maintain healthy levels of muscle.
One of the most potent anti-inflammatory ingredients in sushi is ginger. Ginger contains compounds known as gingerols, paradols, and zingerones, which play vital roles in combating chronic disease.
Ginger also prevents the onset of cancer. Some studies have shown that phenolic compounds found in ginger have effective cancer-fighting properties. The selenium-rich food fish in sushi also fights cancer cells in the body.
The iron found in many of the ingredients in a common sushi roll contains good amounts of iron, which aid in muscle health. Iron is also crucial for keeping energy levels up. Iron aids in DNA synthesis and energy production. It also helps the body transport oxygen throughout its systems.
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