Sushi exists as one of those foods that straddles a fence, capable of being the nutrient-packed healthy dining experiencing you may need, or the decadent dining event that you crave.
Here are a few facts about sushi to remember when trying to decide what kind of culinary experience you're looking to have:
Remember the calories: Many traditional sushi rolls come with a lower calorie account, including those that are made with raw fish, vegetables, rice and nori, which is a kind of seaweed. Some common examples are the salmon cucumber roll with a full serving averaging about 231 calories with 4 grams of fat, while the mackerel roll has a nearly exact calorie count with only 2 grams of fat.
If you're interested in lowering the calorie count, removing ingredients is the best way to go. Cutting out the fish altogether to make the salmon cucumber roll simply a veggie roll will drop the calorie count down to 170. Also, avoiding tempura, fried sushi and sauces that are mixed with mayonnaise are effective ways of still having a tasty meal while minimizing the amount of calories you take in.
Seaweed and fish are friends: Often, the fish and seafood in the roll serve as the primary sources of nutrients for the meal. According to Live Strong, nutrition author Carol Ann Rinzler says that tuna and salmon both provide healthy benefits with their high protein content, omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin D. Mackerel also has omega-3s as well as selenium, a mineral that is believed to be effective in protecting against cancer.
Mind the mercury: Along with recommending that you keep your fish consumption down to 12 ounces per week, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) also supports shrimp, salmon and catfish over shark, swordfish and tile fish because of the mercury content which can lead to problems with vision and memory.