Seafood is "nutrient-dense." That means it offers large quantities of protein and significant amounts of vitamins and minerals without high levels of saturated fats and calories. It is a superb source of complete protein, providing all the essential amino acids. The protein in seafood is easily digestible, making it a perfect nutrition source for people of all ages. It is also a good source of B vitamins and provides such key minerals and trace elements as calcium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, sulfur, fluorine, selenium, copper, zinc and iodine. All these elements are necessary for proper development and growth. Seafood has a very small amount of fat. Most types of fish and shellfish contain less than 5 percent fat. Even high-fat fish usually have less than 15 percent fat, which is significantly lower than red meat. Seafood is also lower in saturated fat than most other protein sources. By substituting fish meals for some meat meals, you can considerably lower your total fat and saturated fat intake. Seafood is generally low in sodium. Most fresh finfish contain very low amounts of sodium, ranging from 60 to 100 milligrams per 100 grams, or 31/2 ounces of raw fish. Cholesterol levels are not significant in most seafood products. Finfish are commonly quite low in cholesterol, with shellfish having low to moderate amounts. Even species with higher cholesterol levels, such as squid, contain less cholesterol than eggs, and are well within the 300 mg daily limit recommended by leading health organizations.
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