16

votes

questions: seafood vs ruminant nutrition

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 18, 2012 at 4:02 PM

I was browsing the archives and saw some negative bias towards pescetarians, based on what I would assume is the notion that a sea animal based diet is somehow deficient in essential nutrients that only land animals can provide. I am not fully pescetarian, because I do eat chicken, bison, and pork, but those amount to less than a pound a week combined, sometimes less than a pound every 2 weeks. I would say that over 80% of the animal products that I've consumed over the past year and a half are from seafood.

Are there some essential nutrients I can only get from ruminants? *Is there something wrong with a pescetarian paleo diet? I get bi-annual blood work do*ne, and b12 and vitamin D status are always well within range. As far as I can tell, seafood is preferable to ruminants because of the more bioavailable omega 3s (brain and cellular health), zinc (reproductive health), and iodine (thyroid health)....and of course protein for muscles. Seafood does not provide iron or carnitine (that I know of), but I am not anemic (I can still donate blood) and I eat spinach with provides iron and a very low phytic acid diet with virtually no coffee (diminishes iron absorption). Again, I do eat chicken and red meat, but only about 1x per week and not in large quantities (usually surf and turf with only about 4-6oz of meat). Right now I'm eating about a half dozen free range eggs a week too, but my egg consumption is inconsistent throughout the year.

Also, Do you have any other suggestions that I could use as a staple (i.e. fish/seafood that's low in mercury and PCBs and high in nutrition)? I've been eating a lot of shrimp, scallops, lobster, and canned sardines (Wild Planet, BPA free) as my staples. I also eat fresh and canned wild salmon (Wild Planet, BPA free cans), fresh ahi tuna, and light tuna packed in olive oil (Crown Prince BPA free, usually). I eat oysters 2-3x per week (out) and whitefish occasionally. I really like canned sardines, and probably average about a can a day but *I worry that the omega 3 is oxidized in the canned sardines- does anyone know if these concerns are warranted or not?

Thank you in advance for your thoughts and suggestions.

Bb3d1772b28c02da2426e40dfcb533f5

(5381)

on August 25, 2012
at 04:16 AM

Excessive o3 in general leads to problems with blood clotting.

44739854bd06eb5c32af5d33aa866864

(859)

on August 20, 2012
at 06:28 PM

I second the suggestion for making bone broth since I didn't see in mentioned in your question foreveryoung... Heads, all the bones, fins, shells of shrimp, etc can be used to make great stock!

44739854bd06eb5c32af5d33aa866864

(859)

on August 20, 2012
at 06:24 PM

Mmmm, those WP sardines are tasty!

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on August 20, 2012
at 11:12 AM

Yeah, that damn Happy Feet movie kinda ruined eating fish for me. I still eat it, but I feel guilty.

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on August 20, 2012
at 11:09 AM

Details tend to be more important the sicker you are. Interesting point on the vit K. Again, I think you are eating very well. You could try adding some bone broth once in a while - maybe you do already? I have been eating more fish lately and my health has been going in a better direction, so there's that, fwiw. But I still do eat a fair bit of beef (and chicken and pork) - and not all grass fed, for that matter.

1da74185531d6d4c7182fb9ee417f97f

(10904)

on August 19, 2012
at 04:53 AM

Have no answer but my first year of paleo/ancestral eating I was all about the muscle meat and pork. First I found myself dropping the pork and over the last6 months I barely eat red meat anymore unless I'm out and a bunless burger is all I can find. I mostly stick to various organ meats a couple times a week but my main protein is seafood. It just feels right.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 19, 2012
at 01:14 AM

Thank you, Doc. I will look further into each of your suggested resources. Much appreciated. Also, thanks for the non-esoteric response :)

8508fec4bae4a580d1e1b807058fee8e

(6259)

on August 19, 2012
at 01:11 AM

great questions and great post! I think if you feel fine (no symptoms) and your bloodwork is fine you're probably fine! You still eat a variety of foods, and I think the greatest diversity in ancestral foods (without causing inflammation and/or symptoms) is optimum.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 07:08 PM

Good point about the Inuit, but I suspect the reason they were prone to heavy bleeding was not because of insufficient O6 in relation to O3, but rather because of insufficient vitamin K from leafy greens, which I consume enough of...and I haven't gotten in many sword fights lately either.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 07:06 PM

Good point about the Inuit, but I suspect the reason they were prone to heavy bleeding was not because of insufficient O6 in relation to O3, but rather because of insufficient vitamin K from leafy greens, which I consume enough of.

Medium avatar

(10601)

on August 18, 2012
at 06:24 PM

How about some paleo moules frites using sweet potatoes? Mussels are awfully good in cream sauce with curry too.

7a6529ea25b655132fe58d793f95547a

(2040)

on August 18, 2012
at 06:11 PM

Ya one can only dream....imagine the abundance that would of been present back then. p.453 Nutrition and Physical Degeneration- "Whereas the skeletons of both men and women were in a state of complete preservation and physical perfection, with little or no caries where sea foods were eaten"

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:56 PM

Whoah just watched that video. Great link and thanks again!

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:55 PM

Whoa Colin just watched that video link. Absolutely terrific and very informative. Breastfeeding mom's can lose up to 3% of their brain mass to donate EPA/DHA to their babies. Holy Smokes! Great video thank s again.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:37 PM

one day.... .

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:37 PM

Here's the thing; if I were around during the paleolithic era and I could choose anywhere I wanted to raise a family and start a new tribe, I would pick Corsica or another coastal regain in le Midi. Seems ideal.

7a6529ea25b655132fe58d793f95547a

(2040)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:28 PM

Cool, thanks a lot I'm looking forward to see some improvements with my health, I know good health constitutes a lot of different things but I think seafood has a role to play. No matter what my health status was over the past ten years or so I always felt good eating fish.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:27 PM

Oh yes thank you for the suggestions. I get steamed mussels in a creamy vin blanc sauce and a tall beer about 1x/wk at my favorite my favorite spot. I could definitely eat more more freshwater/whitefish though. Unfortunately it seems like when it comes to finned fish, the opportunity cost of more taste is less mercury.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:25 PM

Oh yes thank you for the suggestions. I get mussels in a creamy white wine sauce with a tall beer at one of my favorite spots about 1x per week. I could definitely eat more more freshwater/whitefish though. Unfortunately it seems like when it comes to finned fish, there the opportunity cost of more taste is less mercury.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:14 PM

Thanks for the links and I had no idea about selenium binding mercury. Great to know. As far as your side note goes, it is hard to say because I always consumed seafood in my diet, but it was in a 1/1 - 1/2 ratio of seafood to land animals. I did used to get tennis elbow, but have not had it all yet this summer. It is a correlation, which may be something more. DHA is supposed to be highly anti-inflammatory, so I would not be surprised if the increased DHA is helping, but I can't be sure if that is it.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:03 PM

Great answer, Dave. Details can be so important though!

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6 Answers

9
A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on August 18, 2012
at 04:42 PM

Why either/or? I include both liberally. The Inuit suffered from nose bleeds, presumably from high levels of omega-3. Red meat is high in methionine and iron. I tend to think that eating a wide variety of both plants and animals should lead to a lower toxic exposure overall and therefore better health - but I am willing to be shown the error of my ways.

I'd say the way you are eating looks fine. Just my opinion. Frankly, I think we worry too much about these details - just avoiding wheat/sugar/veg oils is probably enough for most people. Or simply eating real food. Heck, Kwaniewski's patients seem to do pretty well on a lot of pork and lard for what it's worth.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 07:06 PM

Good point about the Inuit, but I suspect the reason they were prone to heavy bleeding was not because of insufficient O6 in relation to O3, but rather because of insufficient vitamin K from leafy greens, which I consume enough of.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:03 PM

Great answer, Dave. Details can be so important though!

44739854bd06eb5c32af5d33aa866864

(859)

on August 20, 2012
at 06:28 PM

I second the suggestion for making bone broth since I didn't see in mentioned in your question foreveryoung... Heads, all the bones, fins, shells of shrimp, etc can be used to make great stock!

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on August 20, 2012
at 11:09 AM

Details tend to be more important the sicker you are. Interesting point on the vit K. Again, I think you are eating very well. You could try adding some bone broth once in a while - maybe you do already? I have been eating more fish lately and my health has been going in a better direction, so there's that, fwiw. But I still do eat a fair bit of beef (and chicken and pork) - and not all grass fed, for that matter.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 07:08 PM

Good point about the Inuit, but I suspect the reason they were prone to heavy bleeding was not because of insufficient O6 in relation to O3, but rather because of insufficient vitamin K from leafy greens, which I consume enough of...and I haven't gotten in many sword fights lately either.

Bb3d1772b28c02da2426e40dfcb533f5

(5381)

on August 25, 2012
at 04:16 AM

Excessive o3 in general leads to problems with blood clotting.

4
7a6529ea25b655132fe58d793f95547a

(2040)

on August 18, 2012
at 04:57 PM

I've been thinking a lot about this lately too and I see no problems with a high seafood diet. The sardines your eating are fine small fish don't have the levels of mercury that larger fish do, not to say large fish are bad to eat. The more I look into it it seems that the benefits of seafood far outweigh any downside from any toxicity that may or may not be there:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t9EuSfbInCc&feature=relmfu

I would think the main concern for seafood around here is toxicity, if your looking for a staple then I would use something that's high in selenium as the selenium acts like a magnet to mercury and you don't absorb it.

http://www.wfoa-tuna.org/health/ralstonraymond.pdf

I don't know of any nutrients that you can't get from seafood and the omega 3 question I think was answered here:

http://paleohacks.com/questions/106708/canned-salmon-are-the-omega-3s-oxidized#axzz23rV98N4r

Just as a side note I started increasing seafood in my own diet and was interested in how you feel after eating that way for a while?

One more thing this article from Chris Kesser mentioned that pcbs are higher in beff & chicken so I think your diet is spot on.

http://chriskresser.com/is-eating-fish-safe-a-lot-safer-than-not-eating-fish

7a6529ea25b655132fe58d793f95547a

(2040)

on August 18, 2012
at 06:11 PM

Ya one can only dream....imagine the abundance that would of been present back then. p.453 Nutrition and Physical Degeneration- "Whereas the skeletons of both men and women were in a state of complete preservation and physical perfection, with little or no caries where sea foods were eaten"

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:56 PM

Whoah just watched that video. Great link and thanks again!

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:14 PM

Thanks for the links and I had no idea about selenium binding mercury. Great to know. As far as your side note goes, it is hard to say because I always consumed seafood in my diet, but it was in a 1/1 - 1/2 ratio of seafood to land animals. I did used to get tennis elbow, but have not had it all yet this summer. It is a correlation, which may be something more. DHA is supposed to be highly anti-inflammatory, so I would not be surprised if the increased DHA is helping, but I can't be sure if that is it.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:37 PM

one day.... .

7a6529ea25b655132fe58d793f95547a

(2040)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:28 PM

Cool, thanks a lot I'm looking forward to see some improvements with my health, I know good health constitutes a lot of different things but I think seafood has a role to play. No matter what my health status was over the past ten years or so I always felt good eating fish.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:37 PM

Here's the thing; if I were around during the paleolithic era and I could choose anywhere I wanted to raise a family and start a new tribe, I would pick Corsica or another coastal regain in le Midi. Seems ideal.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:55 PM

Whoa Colin just watched that video link. Absolutely terrific and very informative. Breastfeeding mom's can lose up to 3% of their brain mass to donate EPA/DHA to their babies. Holy Smokes! Great video thank s again.

3
Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25482)

on August 19, 2012
at 01:04 AM

1.http://jackkruse.com/brain-gut-5-paradigm-drifts-paradigm-shifts-epi-paleo/

2.http://jackkruse.com/brain-gut-6-epi-paleo-rx/

Read everything you can from Dr. Stephen Cunnane.

Remko Kuipers also spoke at AHS 2012. His work is amazing too.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 19, 2012
at 01:14 AM

Thank you, Doc. I will look further into each of your suggested resources. Much appreciated. Also, thanks for the non-esoteric response :)

2
7d01d86c539003eed77cf901bf037412

(1076)

on August 19, 2012
at 06:43 AM

Personally I avoid large fish and particularly salmon because of my ethical concerns about over-fishing and fish farming. I do eat sardines and locally grown shellfish though (I live in New Zealand and mussels are very cheap and good). I would eat a lot more fish if I could stop thinking about the extinction of all large sea life soon, and I speak as someone who doesn't just like eating fish but loves catching them too.

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on August 20, 2012
at 11:12 AM

Yeah, that damn Happy Feet movie kinda ruined eating fish for me. I still eat it, but I feel guilty.

2
6d64cd6dc98d6ab763bd03678a317964

(2177)

on August 19, 2012
at 04:34 AM

https://dl.dropbox.com/u/98777831/poster10.pdf

Moving away from the sea is precisely the cause of many of our modern ills. We need need to go back to what gave us our big brains and our nutrition. They talk about depleted soils and rampant mineral deficiencies...where do you think it all went? Washed into the sea. I now incorporate up to a pound of seafood in my diet everyday and I've never felt better!!!

Eating the standard "paleo" diet had me stalled and frustrated. Put a standard paleo "muscle meat" (Not the idealized organ meat fantasy) diet next to a typical pescatarian diet and there will be no comparison at all.

1
Medium avatar

(10601)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:01 PM

Jeez that sounds good. How about adding some freshwater fish like trout or whitefish? Not for nutrients but variety. More fresh mollusks maybe...squid and mussels...in preference to the canned sardines and salmon.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:27 PM

Oh yes thank you for the suggestions. I get steamed mussels in a creamy vin blanc sauce and a tall beer about 1x/wk at my favorite my favorite spot. I could definitely eat more more freshwater/whitefish though. Unfortunately it seems like when it comes to finned fish, the opportunity cost of more taste is less mercury.

Medium avatar

(10601)

on August 18, 2012
at 06:24 PM

How about some paleo moules frites using sweet potatoes? Mussels are awfully good in cream sauce with curry too.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on August 18, 2012
at 05:25 PM

Oh yes thank you for the suggestions. I get mussels in a creamy white wine sauce with a tall beer at one of my favorite spots about 1x per week. I could definitely eat more more freshwater/whitefish though. Unfortunately it seems like when it comes to finned fish, there the opportunity cost of more taste is less mercury.

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