A lot of people are trying out different diet plans. One diet plan most are interested in and using as a stepping stone to vegan or vegetarian diets is the pescatarian diet. Despite the interest, many lack guidance on selecting appropriate pescatarian meals. Now we will discuss what you can and cannot eat and then provide some fresh pescatarian meal ideas. Stay tuned!
What Is A Pescatarian Diet?
Before we delve into the pescatarian meal ideas, it is vital to understand what this diet is. A pescatarian diet refers to a diet that comprises plant-based foods, fish, and seafood (3). Fish and other types of seafood like crabs, lobsters, and shrimp happen to be the primary animal protein source in this diet (3).
That said, this diet does not recommend consuming every type of fish. Instead, you are advised to consume fish that has low mercury content. The top ten types of fish with low mercury levels are canned tuna, salmon, catfish, cod, crabs, scallops, flatfish, clams, shrimp, and pollock (1).
According to WebMD, the FDA has acknowledged that these types of fish have less than 0.2 parts per million of methyl mercury, which is considered safe (1). But, again, you can talk to your nutritionist if you need more insight on such.
- Seafood. It could be canned sardines, tuna or salmon, frozen shrimp, herring, trout, salmon, fish sticks, fresh shellfish, catfish, pollock, or sardines.
- Fruits and vegetables.
- Cereals and whole grains like bulgar wheat, brown rice, oats, and amaranth.
- Pseudo gluten-free grains like buckwheat and quinoa.
- Legumes like peas and pinto beans.
- Nuts and nut butter.
- Seeds like hemp, chia, and flaxseeds.
- Legume products like hummus and tofu.
Why Go Pescatarian?
Well, you need to go pescatarian because it has been linked to an array of health benefits. Some of the benefits you reap by following such a diet plan include:
Improved Heart Health
Fatty fish has been found to contain long-chain omega-3 fatty acids. These acids refer to unsaturated fat that is known to have several health benefits (3). For example, it has been linked to reduced cholesterol levels, blood pressure, heart attacks, and the risk of abnormal heart rhythms (3).
Similarly, because this diet comprises plant-based foods, you also benefit from the heart benefits of eating a plant-based diet. Some of the benefits of such a diet are reduced blood pressure, improved blood lipids, and reduced risk of coronary heart disease (3).
Medical News Today also states that a plant-based diet can help reverse atherosclerotic plaques if one also exercises and manages their stress level (3). Atherosclerosis is a condition that occurs due to plaque build-up in the arteries. It hardens the arteries and narrows them, restricting blood flow, leading to heart attacks and strokes (2).
Reduced Cancer Risk
Research shows that cutting red meat from your diet reduces your cancer risk (1). In addition, Medical News Today states that a pescatarian diet protects individuals against colorectal cancers and cancers affecting the rectum and colon (3).
Reduces Risk Of Diabetes And Inflammation
Inflammation occurs when chemicals from the white blood cells in your body enter your blood or tissues to protect you against any invader. It is part of the immune system defense mechanism. However, it is dangerous because as it progresses, it begins to damage your arteries, joints, and body organs (3).
Consuming a pescatarian diet can prevent you from this. Similarly, this diet can reduce metabolic syndrome, which happens to be a risk factor for diabetes. Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of conditions like high blood pressure, obesity, and insulin resistance (3).
Plant-based foods are also believed to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidants like flavonoids. Flavonoids have anti-diabetic and anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce the risk of diabetes and inflammation (3).
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Pescatarian Meal Ideas
We recommend that you put together your pescatarian diet plan with a licensed nutritionist, especially if you need one customized to meet dietary needs.
For example, if you need lactose intolerance, pescatarian meal ideas. Although you may find such online, it would help if you consulted to be sure that you get accurate meal ideas that are also within your daily calorie limit.
We have provided you with a few examples of dishes for pescatarian meals, which you can prepare over lunch or dinner. They are simple to prepare, and you can also use them as guides if you want a personalized pescatarian diet plan. They are as follows (2):
- Honey and orange roast sea bass with lentils- (Calories- 495, Fat- 18 g, Carbs- 33 g, and Protein- 44 g)
- Sesame salmon, purple sprouting broccoli and sweet potato mash- (Calories- 463, Fat- 22 g, Carbs- 29 g, and Protein- 32 g)
- Veggie shepherd’s pie with sweet potato mash- (Calories- 540, Fat- 16 g, Carbs- 66 g, and Protein- 16 g)
- Creamy courgette lasagna- (Calories- 405, Fat- 21 g, Carbs- 38 g, and Protein- 18 g)
- Coconut fish curry- (Calories- 412, Fat- 24 g, Carbs- 15 g, and Protein- 33 g)
- Fish tagine with saffron and almonds- (Calories- 299, Fat- 11 g, Carbs- 10 g, and Protein- 41 g)
- Steamed trout with mint and dill dressing- (Calories- 378, Fat- 10 g, Carbs- 25 g, and Protein- 43 g)
- Satay sweet potato curry- (Calories- 387, Fat- 25 g, Carbs- 32 g, and Protein- 6 g)
- Harissa roast salmon with lemon chickpea couscous- (Calories- 802, Fat- 39 g, Carbs- 46 g, and Protein- 62 g)
- Salmon with beetroot, feta, and lime salsa- (Calories- 556, Fat- 39 g, Carbs- 12 g, and Protein- 36 g)
- Thai curry fish cakes with sweet chili dressing- (Calories- 188, Fat- 8g, Carbs- 9 g, and Protein- 19 g)
- Curried fish tacos with bean salad- (Calories- 396, Fat- 19 g, Carbs- 23 g, and Protein- 35 g)
- Cod and tarragon fish cakes with minty peas- (Calories- 515, Fat- 14 g, Carbs- 49 g, and Protein- 42 g)
Simple Fast Meal Prep Ideas For Pescatarian
If you are look for some pescatarian lunch meal ideas to meal prep then take a look at the following (2):
- Creamy leek, potato, cheddar, and chive fish pie- (Calories- 964, Fat- 59 g, Carbs- 72 g, and Protein- 34 g)
- Fish pie mac ‘n’ cheese- (Calories- 504, Fat- 22 g, Carbs- 47 g, and Protein- 28 g)
- Lentil and sweet potato curry- (Calories- 613, Fat- 18 g, Carbs- 91 g, and Protein- 27 g)
- Lighter South Indian fish curry- (Calories- 447, Fat- 11 g, Carbs- 56 g, and Protein- 30 g)
- Coconut fish curry traybake- (Calories- 507, Fat- 21 g, Carbs- 44 g, and Protein- 32 g)
- Baked fish with tomatoes, basil, and crispy crumbs- (Calories- 257, Fat- 7 g, Carbs- 16 g, and Protein- 33 g)
- Baked fish with mint and mango relish- (Calories- 249, Fat- 5 g, Carbs- 22 g, and Protein- 30 g)
- Turmeric, ginger, and coconut fish curry- (Calories- 409, Fat- 12 g, Carbs- 44 g, and Protein- 28 g)
Can I Do Keto As A Pescatarian?
Yes, you can. All you have to do is choose low-carb meals because a keto diet happens to be a very low-carb diet. Remember that you must adhere to the Pescatarian dietary guidelines and only include seafood as your main source of animal protein. Take a look at these examples of Pescatarian Keto meal ideas (2):
- Baked sea bass with lemon caper dressing- (Calories- 196, Fat- 13 g, Carbs- 1 g, and Protein- 20 g)
- Autumn vegetable salad with saffron dressing- (Calories- 167, Fat- 12 g, Carbs- 9 g, and Protein- 3 g)
- Tomato and tamarind fish curry- (Calories- 224, Fat- 7 g, Carbs- 11 g, and Protein- 31 g)
- Tomato, burrata and broad bean salad- (Calories- 409, Fat- 32 g, Carbs- 7 g, and Protein- 22 g)
- Thai-style steamed fish- (Calories- 199, Fat- 7 g, Carbs- 4 g, and Protein- 29 g)
- Celery soup- (Calories- 163, Fat- 9 g, Carbs- 15 g, and Protein- 3 g)
- Roasted cauliflower tabbouleh- (Calories- 319, Fat- 21 g, Carbs- 14 g, and Protein- 16 g)
- Herb and garlic baked cod with romesco sauce and spinach- (Calories- 409, Fat- 24 g, Carbs- 11 g, and Protein- 33 g)
- Chickpea, tomato, and spinach curry- (Calories- 204, Fat- 7 g, Carbs- 20 g, and Protein- 11 g)
- Tomato salad with ricotta, broad beans and salsa verde- (Calories- 418, Fat- 40 g, Carbs- 8 g, and Protein- 5 g)
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The Bottom Line
A pescatarian diet requires you to consume plant-based foods and fish, and other seafood varieties as your primary source of animal protein. There are so many recipes you can try, which is why you have to consult with your nutritionist. Remember that any diet has to meet your dietary and calorie requirements. So, it would be best if you seek professional help.
This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!
- Nothing fishy About These Fish! (2003, webmd.com)
- Pescatarian recipes (2021, bbcgoodfood.com)
- What is a pescatarian diet? (2018, medicalnewstoday.com)