How much seafood is enough?

How much seafood is enough?

Children in the U.S. are not eating enough seafood. That’s according to a recent report from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).

In it, parents are encouraged to eliminate some of the red meat and chicken in their diet for 1-2 weekly servings of fish and shellfish. The recommendation cites the high-quality proteins and nutrients and lack of sugars and saturated fats in seafood.

“Many types of seafood are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, which help lower your cholesterol and triglycerides,” says Dr. Matt Smiley, a pediatrician and medical director of the Healthy Active Living Program for Kids at Advocate Children’s Hospital. “Eating fish at least twice a week can be very helpful for lowering your risk for heart disease, and the benefits are cumulative, so starting early is critical.”

“For families who eat meat, fish should be a welcome part of a child’s diet,” said the report’s lead author Dr. Aaron Bernstein said in a statement.

“We’re encouraging pediatricians to ask families about fish and shellfish consumption — since most children don’t eat much beyond the occasional fish sticks — and advise them on the healthiest choices,” he said.

The AAP suggests parents shop for the healthiest choices, for example — sustainably caught or raised fish and shellfish.

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One Comment

  1. I heard an interview on NPR, didn’t get the name, was driving, regarding ‘myths in healthcare,’ and the benefits of eating seafood was one. The author of the book on the subject said in fact, it could well be that the seafood wasn’t responsible for the perceived benefits, but that rather that people who eat seafood may display a number of behaviors that lead to better health. She didn’t say, but one might think of regular dental checkups and work, because apparently dental problems relate to a whole spectrum of health issues. Maybe, the woman was suggesting, people who eat fish regularly do other things regularly that actually are the causes of the health benefits. It was an interesting concept.

    She also downplayed the benefits of fish oil supplements but unfortunately did not seem to have allowed for the fact that the most of the studies aren’t distinguishing among dosages. I have read that 3600 units is necessary for the good effects. I know there is a necessary level of dosage for biotin, having taken several dosages are various times and found that 10,000 units is necessary both for increased hair growth and nail strength. So why not fish oil? I still take it, 3600 units.

About the Author

Evonne Woloshyn
Evonne Woloshyn

Evonne Woloshyn, health enews contributor, is director of public affairs at Advocate Children's Hospital. Evonne began her career as an anchor and reporter in broadcast news. Over the past 20 years, she has worked in health care marketing in both Ohio and Illinois. Evonne loves to travel, spend time with family and is an avid Pittsburgh Steelers fan!