Because of their many nutritional benefits, prawns are considered by a variety of health experts to be among the healthiest foods in the world. Prawns are a great source of high quality protein, and provide some of the most important vitamins and minerals that make up a healthy diet. They are surprisingly low in calories and are made up of extremely healthy cholesterol. In fact, according to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, eating prawns is part of a heart healthy diet. And because they are common throughout the world, there are healthy prawn dishes within almost every style or type of cuisine.
Eating prawns regularly will provide the following nutritional benefits:
- Eating prawns provides a complete protein, which means it includes all nine amino acids in the right proportion for the body to function properly. In fact, 100 grams of prawns contains about 25 grams of protein, approximately the same as a similar amount of chicken or beef.
- Prawns are extremely low in calories. The same 100 grams of prawns contains only about 115 calories. Chicken contains about twice as much and beef three times as much.
- While prawns contain higher than average amounts of cholesterol, they do not lead to higher cholesterol levels in the body due to their healthy fat profile. This is because they contain almost three times more Omega 3 Fatty Acid than they do Omega 6 Fatty Acid. Studies have shown that foods with high amounts of Omega 3 are associated with reduced risk of heart attacks and lower blood pressure. In fact, the cholesterol contained in prawns is vital for a healthy diet.
- Prawns are a great source of Vitamins B-6, B-12 and Niacin, which help the body produce energy, build muscle and replenish red blood cells.
- Prawns contain significant amounts of iron, a mineral that is essential for the body to effectively distribute oxygen. And because it is in only a few types of food, iron deficiencies that cause severe exhaustion are surprisingly widespread, especially for women.
- Prawns are a rich source of selenium, one of the most effective antioxidants at maintaining healthy cells. They also contain high levels of Zinc, which is important to develop a healthy immune system
- Eating prawns helps build strong bones because they contain phosphorous, copper and magnesium.
It is important to note that a small percentage of people have a strong allergy to prawns, so if you find that you react negatively you should immediately contact a doctor. The healthiest ways to cook prawns are to steam, boil, bake or grill them. And because of their relatively neutral taste profile, prawns make up the base protein in an extremely diverse set of healthy and tasty meals.