Whether you enjoy them steamed, sautéed with garlic, or added to a stew, mussels are a delicious delicacy. And thankfully, they are a treat you do not have to feel guilty for enjoying! Mussels are a very nutritious addition to your diet. Here are six key nutrients that are found in significant quantities in fresh mussels.
Manganese is a trace mineral, which means your body only needs it in small amounts - but that does not mean it's not essential. It is involved in many of the body's chemical processes, including those involving cholesterol and protein metabolism.
Consuming more manganese may help improve PMS symptoms, speed wound healing, and assist with weight loss. One serving of mussels contains 289 percent of the daily value of manganese.
Selenium is another trace mineral. Your body uses it to form antioxidant enzymes that prevent cellular damage. Selenium also plays a role in thyroid function and helps maintain a healthy immune system.
Studies suggest that eating more selenium may help prevent or slow the development of cancer. If you suffer from rheumatoid arthritis, selenium may help ease your joint pain. One serving of mussels contains 109 percent of the daily value of selenium.
Iron is also an important trace mineral. It is used to form hemoglobin, the component of your red blood cells that binds to oxygen, carrying it to your body's cells. A lack of iron in the diet leads to a condition called anemia, which causes symptoms like fatigue, dizziness, dry skin, and weakness.
Iron deficiency is quite common, especially in women, so eating more iron-rich foods like mussels is a smart choice. One serving of mussels contains 32 percent of the daily value of iron.
4. Vitamin B12
Vitamin B12 plays a lot of different roles in the body. It is involved in the formation of healthy red blood cells and also helps form your DNA. If you don't consume enough vitamin B12, you may experience symptoms like tiredness, weakness, heart palpitations, vision loss, depression, and pale skin.
People who don't eat a lot of animal products are at risk for a vitamin V12 deficiency since it is primarily found in meat and seafood. One serving of mussels contains 340 percent of the daily value of this nutrient.
Also known as vitamin B9, folate helps your body convert carbohydrates to energy. It also plays an important role in DNA formation, and during pregnancy, it protects against neural tube defects in the fetus. Low folate levels may lead to depression and an increased risk of heart disease.
Since folate is primary found in fruits, veggies, and whole grains, people who do not eat a lot of these foods may be deficient. Thankfully, mussels are also a good source; one serving provides 16 percent of the daily value of folate.
Also known as vitamin B2, riboflavin helps your body absorb other nutrients and maintain its energy levels. It's also necessary for a healthy liver, eyes, nerves, and skin. Symptoms of a riboflavin deficiency include red lips, dry skin, frequent mouth ulcers, and a sore throat.
Those who drink heavily are at an increased risk for riboflavin deficiency. Although many plant foods are high in riboflavin, some of it is lost when they are cooked. Mussels contain 21 percent of the daily value of riboflavin per serving, making them a good source.
If you've been looking for a reason to eat mussels more often, these are six good ones. Visit Vince's Shellfish Company for the freshest, most delicious mussels around, and start experimenting with new recipes. Your body will thank you.