To support a healthy weight
Ensuring muscles are strong helps to boost our metabolic rate – the rate at which the body burns calories. This means the more muscle we have, the more calories we burn, even when we’re resting – and this can help us reach and maintain a healthy weight. Exercise is the best way to build muscle but making sure our diet contains enough protein also helps to contribute to a growth in muscle mass2. Added to this, fish – especially white fish and shellfish – often contains fewer calories than many other animal sources of protein, which again can help with weight control. Furthermore, according to the British Nutrition Foundation, foods that are high in protein help to make us feel fuller than foods that are high in fat or carbohydrates20. This is because protein takes longer for the body to digest, which delays hunger so we eat less and find it easier to control our weight. Enjoying a protein-rich food at each meal is a great way to keep us fuller for longer. Fish is a great choice whatever the time of day, even breakfast – try kippers with wholegrain toast, a breakfast pot filled with spinach, tomato, avocado and tuna, or kedgeree made with mackerel.
2 EFSA Journal 2010; 8 (10): 1811. doi: 10.2903/j.efsa.2010.1811
20 British Nutrition Foundation. Understanding satiety: feeling full after a meal. http://www.nutrition.org.uk/healthyliving/fuller/understanding-satiety-feeling-full-after-a-meal