Proper Raw Fish Preparation

Proper Raw Fish Preparation

When somebody mentions sashimi, one of the first things that would come to mind is ‘raw fish’ or ‘uncooked seafood’. Well, having raw ingredients, particularly fish and seafood, is one of the unique characteristics of sashimi.

Since there are certain risks in eating raw food such as raw fish and seafood, proper handling of these ingredients is crucial to make sure that the sashimi will be perfectly safe for human consumption.

While people are generally advised to just go to their nearest and well reputed sashimi restaurants for their sashimi cravings to ensure safety, there are still steps you can take to guarantee that the raw fish you prepare for sashimi at home would not result in food poisoning.

However, before even deciding to prepare sashimi at home, you should have a high-powered refrigerator capable of storing raw fish or seafood at 0°C. You have to store the raw fish or seafood in this temperature to keep unwanted bacteria at bay.

You should also be aware of the types of fish ideal to be eaten raw and suitable for sashimi. The most common types of fish perfect for sashimi are: tuna, salmon, flounder or halibut, yellowtail, as well as sea bass. For other seafood types, prawns and squids are among the types most often used for sashimi.

Before anything else and prior to the fish you’ve purchased making it to your household, check for the freshness of the fish. Signs of a fresh fish include bright red or pink coloured gills, soft gills, clear and bulging eyes, and mild scent.

Just as with every kitchen and every cooking, cleanliness plays an extremely important role in safety. So, you have to ensure that your kitchen area is totally free from germs and dirt.
In addition, you have to make sure that you gut or clean your fish properly to preserve its freshness well.

Of course, probably one of the most important things to keep in mind in preparing raw fish for homemade sashimi is that you cannot store it for a long time. You still have to serve it soon because no amount of proper handling could ever extend the freshness of fish for a long time.

Sushi and Pregnancy

Sushi and Pregnancy

For many decades now, there have been many debates as to whether or not eating sushi is safe for pregnant women. Some types of fish may have high contents of mercury which can be fatal to a pregnant woman as well as to her unborn baby. Aside from this, raw fish that are used in making sushi are at a risk of containing parasites and pathogens that can be equally dangerous to women who are pregnant.

On the other hand, fish that are used in sushi can be an excellent source of essential and healthy oils that can be extremely beneficial to the soon to be moms and the babies they are carrying. In Japan, many pregnant women still continue eating sushi because of the nutrients it can give. Moreover, sushi can be advantageous for those who are aiming for a low fat diet.

Should eating sushi be avoided altogether during pregnancy? A report from the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine in 1991 stated that the dangers such as bacteria and viruses accumulated from seafood are usually caused not by the seafood or fish itself, but by the way seafood are handled (cooked or frozen) and prepared for human consumption. Therefore, if the sushi is prepared and preserved the right way before being consumed, there can be little to no risk of acquiring illnesses.

What should be taken into consideration before regarding a particular sushi as ‘safe to eat’? Raw fish may possibly be contaminated by some worms or eggs that can cause sickness to the pregnant woman and her foetus, so make sure that the fish included in the sushi was well frozen (around four days) for these worms and eggs to be eliminated. However, other studies suggest that although proper freezing of fish at desired temperatures will get rid of some unwanted parasites, merely doing so will not be enough to totally make the fish safe for consumption. Uncooked or undercooked seafood can still contain organisms that have unwanted bacteria and viruses that may lead to diseases such as Hepatitis A or other intestinal diseases. Other painful symptoms that may be obtained from eating raw fish or seafood include vomiting, nausea, extreme pain in the abdomen, and diarrhoea. It will always be safer to choose to eat cooked fish. It is recommended to only eat seafood or fish cooked thoroughly to 145 degrees Fahrenheit.

What are the other risks of eating sushi while pregnant? Aside from choosing cooked fish over uncooked ones, pregnant women should also avoid eating fish with high mercury content. Having excessive levels of mercury (or more specifically, methylmercury found in different types of fish), can cause harm to a person’s internal organs such as heart, kidney, and lungs and can also have a negative effect on the immune system.

Some of the types of fish pregnant women should refrain from eating that have high levels of mercury are fresh tuna, swordfish, mackerel, as well as shark. If you’re looking for fish types with low mercury levels, salmon is an excellent choice.

Natural fish oils that can be gained from the fish ingredient of sushi can be extremely profitable to a baby’s brain development. Pregnant women should not deprive their unborn child of this important nutrient.

In conclusion, the risks of getting sick because of eating sushi will greatly depend on the pregnant women’s level of precaution. If you’re pregnant and you want to eat sushi, just be extra careful. Always make sure that you eat in a reputable, sanitary sushi restaurant. Choose cooked fish over raw or undercooked. Know your sushi – or at least know the types you should avoid. After all, sushi has been a part of Japanese diet – even for pregnant women – for many centuries now, and yet Japan is currently one of the countries with the healthiest babies in the world.

How Healthy Is Sushi?

How Healthy Is Sushi

Health buffs never run out of choices for lunch. Especially now that there are various healthy foods that taste really good are readily available.

Japanese food is always a great choice in achieving or maintaining a healthy diet. Japan is currently ranked as the nation with the highest life expectancy as of 2015, according to WHO or World Health Organization. Of course, what the Japanese eat has a huge significance to their impressively long lives.

Sushi is one of the most popular Japanese foods, and is often a favorite for many people in different countries, whether you’re trying to lose weight or you’re just craving for a tasty snack.

How healthy is sushi, really?

The main ingredients for sushi are usually rice, fish, and seaweed. Sushi is often served with wasabi. For vegetarians, fish may be replaced by carrots, cucumbers, shiitake mushrooms and avocados. Each component of sushi has a high nutritional value.

Rice is an excellent source of protein and energy. It can also lower cholesterol levels. Aside from these, rice also provides Vitamin B1 which is essential to our health. Rice is also great for the digestive system and can substantially improve bowel movement.

Tuna, mackerel, and salmon are just some of the most common fish used in sushi. Fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids which are good for the heart and can help boost cardiovascular health. These fish are rich in healthy oils that can also help prevent stroke. Although, some are afraid to try out sushi or sashimi because of fear of getting parasitic worms from uncooked fish; it’s wiser to eat sushi from well-reputed sushi places to ensure safety. If you’re still uncomfortable eating raw fish, you can try going for sushi with cooked fish instead.

Most sushi also has seaweed which is high in Vitamins A and C. Seaweed also has iodine and is great for the thyroid. It can also help prevent diabetes. If that’s not enough, seaweed can also lower cholesterol levels and can help get rid of migraines or headaches.

Sushi is commonly served with a green paste called wasabi. Wasabi can help prevent cancer and relieve inflammation in the joints. Wasabi is also well known for its ability to prevent cavities or tooth decays.

There are many amazing health benefits that can be gained by eating sushi. It’s proof that you can still enjoy a delicious snack without compromising your health.