Is Squid Heart-Healthy?

You're probably already aware that eating fish, such as salmon, is good for your heart. Other types of seafood aren't as impressive in terms of omega-3 fatty acids, but they can still be heart-healthy. Though it isn't rich in omega-3s, squid nutrition profile makes it a good addition to a heart-healthy diet.

Three ounces of squid contains 78 calories.
Credit: Milkos/iStock/GettyImages

Squid also supplies certain nutrients that protect your heart, help keep your blood pressure normal and help keep your cholesterol within a normal range, all of which are reasons the seafood is a good choice in terms of your heart.

Saturated Fat Stats

Watching your intake of saturated fat is a smart move. When your diet is too high in saturated fat, you're putting yourself at an increased risk for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease and stroke. Many types of seafood, including squid, can be low in saturated fat, provided that it's eaten fresh and not deep-fried. A 3-ounce serving of plain squid contains less than 1 gram of saturated fat, while the same amount of fried squid, usually called calamari, contains about 1.6 grams of saturated fat, according to nutrient data provided by the USDA.

Some Concerns With Sodium

Plain squid does contain some sodium since it lives in the salty environment of the ocean. A 3-ounce serving of plain squid has 37 milligrams of sodium, which is slightly less than 2 percent of your daily limit of 2,300 milligrams of sodium. If the squid is deep-fried, however, the sodium content increases to 321 milligrams per 3-ounce serving, which is 14 percent of your daily limit.

If you're already on a low-sodium diet or have other risk factors, such as being over the age of 50, you should limit yourself to 1,500 milligrams of sodium per day as recommended by the American Heart Association, making these percentages higher. Too much sodium raises your blood pressure, putting you at a higher risk for heart attack or stroke.

Read more: 4 Types of Foods a Pescatarian Can Eat

Source of Heart-Healthy Nutrients

A 3-ounce portion of plain squid supplies 209 milligrams of potassium. This is only about 4 percent of the 4,700 milligrams of potassium you need each day, but every little bit counts. Potassium encourages your heart to beat normally and helps keep your blood pressure low, the Oregon State University Linus Pauling Institute reports. That same serving of squid also contains about 1 milligram of vitamin E, which is 7 percent of the 15 milligrams you need each day.

According to the National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements, getting plenty of vitamin E might protect against heart disease because the vitamin protects your cells and makes them less susceptible to oxidative damage damage. The fat-soluble vitamin may also reduce inflammation and help prevent the formation of blood clots.

Read more: What are the Benefits of Squid Ink

Heart-Healthy Squid Preparation

To add a flavor, a boost of vitamin C and few calories, squeeze lemon juice over our cooked squid. Opt for baked, sautéed or grilled squid because it's lower in saturated fat and sodium than its fried counterparts.

Add squid to seafood stew, or grill it and slice it over a chef salad in place of grilled chicken or turkey. Stuff cooked squid into corn tortillas and top with tomatoes and avocado for a different spin on the usual fish taco.

references
Load Comments
PARTNER & LICENSEE OF THE LIVESTRONG FOUNDATION

Copyright © 2019 Leaf Group Ltd. Use of this web site constitutes acceptance of the LIVESTRONG.COM Terms of Use , Privacy Policy and Copyright Policy . The material appearing on LIVESTRONG.COM is for educational use only. It should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. LIVESTRONG is a registered trademark of the LIVESTRONG Foundation. The LIVESTRONG Foundation and LIVESTRONG.COM do not endorse any of the products or services that are advertised on the web site. Moreover, we do not select every advertiser or advertisement that appears on the web site-many of the advertisements are served by third party advertising companies.