Shrimp: Forrest Gump Knew What He was Talking About; Surprisingly a Nutritional Powerhouse

Shrimp: Forrest Gump Knew What He was Talking About; Surprisingly a Nutritional Powerhouse

I am a seafood lover and shrimp is at the top of my favorites due to its versatility, accessibility and mild taste that lends itself as a stand alone or paired up with so many other ingredients.  I had never, however, thought too much about its nutritional benefits as other seafood favorites like salmon, tuna, and sardines seemed to hog all the limelight.

The World’s Healthiest Foods‘ recent article, How Does Shrimp Provide Antioxidant and Anti-Inflammatory Support?, opened my eyes to all the nutritional information I’ve been negligent in knowing about one of America’s favorite seafoods.

Here are the highlights from the article on why that shrimp cocktail not only tastes good but is so good for you.  Here is the link to the article so you may read it in full at your own leisure.  I’ll also link you to a couple favorite shrimp recipes of mine from The Whole Meal to get you started on your merry shrimp way.

  1. Anti-Inflammatory and Antioxidant Support:  mainly due to xanthophyll carotenoid called astaxanthin, and the minerals selenium and copper.
  2. Protein and Peptide Support: at over 26 grams of protein per 4 ounces, shrimp ranks as WHFoods’ 8th best source of protein.
  3. You can eat a large amount of shrimp without using up too many of your daily calories!  This fact from the article surprised me the most: “… a person eating 1,800 calories per day could consume 20 shrimp and only be “spending” about 8% of his or her daily calories. This very low calorie cost would not be so remarkable if it were not for the fact that shrimp provides us with significant amounts of so many nutrients. We usually have to eat foods with a far greater calorie content to get the nutrient richness provided by shrimp. For example, those same 20 shrimp that provide us with about 140 calories also provide us with 25 grams of protein or 50% of the Daily Value (DV).They also provide nearly 2 micrograms of vitamin B12″.  Now that is powerful!

Forrest Gump was no idiot: “Anyway, like I sayin’, shrimp is the fruit of the sea. You can barbecue it, boil it, broil it, bake it, saute it. There’s shrimp-kabobs, shrimp creole, shrimp gumbo. Pan fried, deep fried, stir-fried. There’s pineapple shrimp, lemon shrimp, coconut shrimp, pepper shrimp, shrimp soup, shrimp stew, shrimp salad, shrimp and potatoes, shrimp burger, shrimp sandwich. That, that’s about it.”

But that not about it; buying shrimp can be a bit challenging as it has so many variations.  Serious Eats wrote a very thorough article on this subject which I defer to as its about as comprehensive as it gets: Everything You Need to Know to Buy Better Shrimp.

Now that you are all intelligent about this shellfish here are a couple recipes from The Whole Meal to get you started on your new love affair with shrimp:

Peruvian Quinoa Soup with Shrimp

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Pickled Shrimp

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