I’m not one to order seafood at a nice fancy dinner. But if scallops are on the menu, then you better believe it’s my first choice. Scallops are a type of shellfish that are tender with a buttery and delectable texture. Low in calories and packed with protein, scallops are the perfect choice when you’re looking for a well-balanced and healthy dinner option. We're going to talk more about scallop nutrition, benefits, & why they deserve a spot at the dinner table. Start adding a few scallops to your weekly meal plan!
What Are Scallops
Scallops are classified as a type of sea mollusk, similar to mussels, clams, and oysters. Most shellfish contain a high quantity of protein, nutrients and antioxidants, such as carotenoids and astaxanthin which can fight free radical damage, and minerals such a zinc, copper, and potassium.
Scallops, much like other seafood options are low calorie and packed with protein. Additionally, they have a ton of beneficial vitamins and nutrients, like B-vitamins, zinc, copper, selenium, and potassium as well as healthy omega-3 fatty acids. According to the USDA Foodcentral database, 100g of scallops contains
- Calories 137
- Fat 1g
- Carbs 6.3g
- Protein 24g
- Calcium 12mg
- Iron 0.68mg
- Potassium 367mg
- Zinc 1.81mg 30% DV
- Vitamin B12 600% DV
- Selenium 70% DV
- Phosphorus 30% DV
1. Scallops Can Benefit Body Optimization
Scallops are one of the best foods to help you lose body fat and increase muscle mass, due to its impressive nutritional profile. Low in calories, high in protein, and low in fat, scallops make for the perfect addition to your weekly meal prep and nutrition plan. The only thing is that they may be a bit cost prohibitive, that is unless you live near the ocean.
Scallops are 80% protein, also making them a low-carb food, which can benefit weight loss since they have no effect on blood sugar or insulin levels. High protein foods are found to also have a higher thermogenic effect. A general estimate of the thermic effect of food is around 10% of total daily caloric intake, though the effect varies significantly with different types of foods. The energy required to digest each macronutrient or the (TEF) can be expressed as a percentage of the energy provide by each macronutrient [R].
- Fat: 9 calories per gram with a TEF of 0–3%.
- Carbohydrate: 4 calories per gram with a TEF of 5–10%.
- Protein: 4 calories per gram with a TEF of 20–30%.
Thus, if a meal contains 500kcal then the thermic effect of processing that meal is about 50kcal.
Essentially eating healthier foods, and more protein, will help you burn even more calories by boosting your metabolism. Protein also initiates the muscle building process, known as muscle protein synthesis. Your body needs ample amounts of protein, to maintain and build more lean muscle mass. Scallops check all the boxes when it comes to optimizing body composition.
2. Scallops May Benefit Heart Health
Rich in omega-3 fatty acids, studies have shown that seafood and scallops can have a positive effect on heart health. The human body requires both groups of essential fatty acids (omega-3 and omega-6) to survive, however the typical modern-day diet, is much higher in Omega-6 fatty acids than Omega-3. Since they are essential, omega-3s must be obtained from your diet or through supplementation.
Omega 3 fatty acids have been clinically proven to improve cardiovascular function by improving hypertension, raising HDL (good cholesterol) and lowering LDL (bad cholesterol). Omega-3s also aid in lowering blood pressure and combating inflammation within the artery walls.
Several large-scale studies have found lowered risks of heart disease amongst those with higher omega-3 in their diets. A study of more than 63,000 participants found that individuals with higher amounts of omega-3 fatty acids in their diet, had a 17% reduced risk of cardiovascular events and mortality rates [R].
3. Scallops Are Rich In Taurine
Scallops are the most taurine rich food on the planet. Taurine is a conditionally essential amino acid, technically classified as a beta-amino acid.
Conditionally essential amino acids are called on in times of extreme physical stress, illness, or injury. It’s essential to replenish these amino acids during those times, as they will subsequently deplete at a rapid pace. High endurance training will cause a rapid decline in Taurine levels, therefore it's important to replenish Taurine, in order to maintain maximal muscle contraction and release.
Studies have shown that taurine, may help fight obesity, improve heart health, fight diabetes, improve neurological health, and benefit muscle contraction.
RELATED ARTICLE 5 Impressive Health Benefits Of Taurine
4. Scallops Are Packed With Selenium
Selenium is an essential and vital mineral, which plays a major role in your metabolism and thyroid function. Selenium acts as a powerful antioxidant – compounds which can help eradicate free radicals and protect your body from excess damage. An over abundance of free radicals can cause oxidative stress, which has been linked to chonic disease states like heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Keeping a healthy balance of free radicals, is essential to health and the overall aging process.
Scallop Benefits: Takeaway
When it comes to seafood, it doesn’t get much better than scallops. From the texure to the taste, and the powerful nutrient content, scallops provide a host of health benefits. Dense with powerful antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, and vital amino acids, scallops can provide you with the more health benefits, than almost any other food. Add a few scallops to your weekly meal plan, you will not regret it.
Need Help With Optimizing Your Diet And Nutrition And Training Plan To Finally Get The Results You've Been Waiting For?
SWOLVERINE IS AN ENDURANCE ATHLETE AND ACTIVE LIFESTYLE BRAND. MADE FOR THE ELITE ATHLETE, AND THE STRONG-WILLED OUR PRODUCTS WERE DESIGNED TO FUEL YOUR ATHLETIC PERFORMANCE. WE PERFORM WHEN YOU PERFORM.
We believe that everyone can optimize not only their athletic performance but their human potential. The way we believe we can optimize performance is through transparency, clinically effective doses, and clinically proven ingredients with evidence-based outcomes. We provide the nutrients you need to power your active lifestyle.