Tuna and similar species are a rich source of food for many countries. These supremely tasty fish offer many health benefits which have increased their demand globally, threatening their existence. Tuna forms more than 8 per cent of the entire gamut of globally traded seafood. World Tuna Day is celebrated every year on the 2nd of May in order to promote sustainable fishing practices and conservation measures to ensure that tuna stocks don’t crash. Many countries are dependent on tuna production for food security and providing livelihoods to a large cross section of their population. World Tuna Day is observed by United Nations and the celebration started on 2nd May 2017. In December 2016, the United Nations General Assembly decided to formally institute the day on 2nd May.
Tuna comes in a wide-ranging variety of species. But the most popular varieties in the consumer market are skipjack, yellowfin, bluefin and bigeye.
Tuna fish is sold in the market in two forms: As a canned product and as the key ingredient of sashimi/sushi. Skipjack and yellowfin are popular in the canned product segment while bluefin and bigeye are used for sashimi/sushi. You can use canned tuna in your homemade sandwich and salads. Tuna can be canned either in a variety of oils or in water. However, water-canned tuna is a more preferred option as it is low in calories. Consumption of this sea-food is not very high in our country despite the array of health benefits it offers. From helping in battling obesity to fighting thyroid issues, tuna is a boon in more ways than one. On this World Tuna Day, we shed light on how it boosts your health apart from making your salads and sandwiches more yummy scrumptious. However, if you are allergic to seafoods, make sure that you consult your doctor before including tuna in your meals. Also, expecting moms need to discuss with their gynaecologists before going for this sea fish.
Helps in your weight-loss mission
Tuna is a rich source of lean protein and its calorie count is pretty low. So, a tuna sandwich made with wholegrain breads can be a good meal option if you are fighting obesity. Much like high-fibre foods, protein-rich options manage your appetite pretty well by keeping you satiated for long. Several studies have established a link between high-protein diets and low levels ghrelin (your hunger hormone). One such study that featured in the
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition noted that a high-protein breakfast caused a significant decline in the ghrelin hormone. On the other hand, in another research conducted at the University of Washington School of Medicine, the researchers revealed that study participants who increased their protein consumption by 15 per cent could cut down 441 calories from their daily diet. This led to a significant decline in their body weight and fat.
Good for thyroid issues
Thyroid gland, located at the end of your neck, produces thyroid hormone and is responsible for a wide range of significant body functions like regulation of metabolism, temperature, heartbeat, so on and so forth. However, if this gland is unable to produce sufficient amount of thyroid hormone, then or over produces it, these bodily functions will go haywire. To keep your
thyroid glands humming, two nutrients are necessary: Iodine and selenium. In a study published in the International Journal of Endocrinology, the researchers noted that maintaining selenium levels through your diet can help you ward off thyroid diseases along with maintaining your overall health. 85g of canned tuna will give you 17 micrograms of iodine and 92 micrograms of selenium.
Enhances your brain function
Niacin or vitamin B3 is another vitamin that tuna fish offers you. According to a study published in the
Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry, niacin can reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and cognitive decline. Also, it is loaded with omega 3 fatty acids that can be protective against neuropsychological disorders like depression and schizophrenia, says another study published in the Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Inflammation is your body’s natural defence mechanism. It begins as a healing mechanism when your immune system senses any damage in cells, pathogens, and irritants. However, prolonged inflammation could be a sign of severe health complications such as cardiovascular ailments or even cancer development. As per the findings of a study published in the journal
EMBO Reports, chronic inflammation can cause various diseases such as diabetes, autoimmune disease, heart related problems, so on and so forth. You can tackle inflammation with tuna because of its strong anti-inflammatory properties. A number of studies have mentioned that you can use this fish as a therapeutic option against lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis and Crohn’s disease (all autoimmune inflammatory diseases).
Addresses protein deficiency
Protein deficiency affects your metabolism, immunity, bone and muscle strength and energy levels. It can also have a negative impact on your hair, skin and nails. Several studies suggest that when your body is low on protein, it can rev up your calorie intake as you crave for savoury foods. Tuna can be your answer to protein deficiency. As already mentioned, this fish is loaded with proteins. 85g of canned tuna in oil will give you 25g of dietary protein. The global dietary reference cites that an average adult should consume at least 0.8 grams of protein per kg of body weight every day.