National Lobster Day on September 25th takes a taste of a seafood favorite. Here is New England, we get to enjoy fresh lobster and celebrate our heritage with this food. Lobster has some impressive nutritional benefits.
Lobster is low in saturated fat. Although it is relatively higher in cholesterol, along with other shellfish, lobster is no longer demonized as a cholesterol-raising food. This is because researchers have found that dietary cholesterol has little effect on blood cholesterol levels in most people, so the amount in lobster shouldn’t be a concern. Lobster also does not naturally have any carbs or sugar. However, it has no fiber either. That means that it is a good idea to pair a high-fiber food like broccoli when you are eating lobster.
Lobster is largely composed of lean protein. One cup of lobster provides nearly 28 grams. Like other shellfish, lobster provides all of the essential amino acids. Lean protein is important for those with weight loss goals because consuming this kind of food helps you build muscle and lose fat. Also, 1 cup of cooked lobster meat only has 1.3 grams of fat, the majority of which come from polyunsaturated fats. There is also some monounsaturated and saturated fat in lobster. Lobster is a good source of essential omega 3 fatty acids. Omega 3 fatty acids are important for good health, especially for brain help because they are a special kind of fat that your body cannot produce. The brain needs omega-3’s stay in top shape.
Lobster contains beneficial vitamins and minerals such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, selenium, choline, and vitamin E. Lobster has high amounts of copper – 178% of the recommended daily value. In the body, small amounts of copper are required to maintain optimum health because they help form red blood cells, bone, connective tissue and some important enzymes.
You should note that because lobster is a marine animal, it can be very high in sodium. Just one cup of lobster provides 705 milligrams of sodium, which is nearly 31% of the recommended daily limit. Try pairing with low-sodium foods like whole grain rice and tons of crisp veggies. As with consuming anything that is high sodium, make sure to drink plenty of water!
Lobster itself is healthy, but sometimes the way it is prepared makes it an unhealthy choice. For instance, many people like to dip lobster in butter and add salt. Lobster rolls are also covered in butter or mayo, and used in bisques, mac n cheese – you get the idea. A great way to eat lobster is grilled or steamed with fresh squeezed lemon juice.
Did you know?! Despite its desirable reputation today, lobster was not always known as a pricey indulgence. In the 17th century, colonists in Massachusetts considered lobster shells in a home to be a sign of poverty and only fed lobster to their servants. In the 1940s, it was possible to buy a can of baked beans for 53 cents per pound and canned lobster for 11 cents per pound.
Lobster is now seen as a delicacy, in part because of the discovery that cooking the lobster live made it more appetizing, as opposed to killing it first and cooking it later.