Sushi: More Than Meets The Eye

Some call it a mixture of art and food others eat sushi for its health benefits.

One of the tastiest of Japan's inventions,
sushi is both visually stunning and delicious.

In Los Angeles alone, there are countless sushi restaurants which anyone, whether they be new to this eclectic dish or expertly familiar with sushi, may visit and enjoy. And with the endless varieties of sushi and the countless different types of sauces and ingredients used in the process, the tastiness of the dish often parallels its

Among the several different types of sushi that may be ordered is Nigiri: small rice balls with different types of fish toppings, such as shrimp, eel, tuna, eel and others. Nigiri is the most common sushi seen in restaurants and known worldwide for its smooth appearance and delicious taste.

Another type, Gunkan, is similar to Nigiri but contains seaweed in addition to the rice
and fish, all placed in a cup. Temaki sushi
is another favorite, and is widely known
to sushi eaters. It's a giant cone made of
Nori (seaweed), stuffed with rice, topped
with an assortment of fish, and topped
off with a special sauce.

Countless varieties of fish keep sushi
interesting and refreshed. Aji, spanish
mackerel, eel, shrimp, ika (squid), sake (salmon), uni (sea urchin), and tako (octupus) are just a few of these.

And every fish has its own flavor and
texture. Always served with ginger, wasabi, and soy sauce, sushi becomes even more delicious with the savory combinations.

Sushi is also a great source of nutrition,
packed with protein and nutrients, and
is also low in fat. Whether you are on a
diet or looking for something healthy to
eat, sushi is a great dish to experience.

Most of the fat of sushi is in the form
of Omega 3 fatty acids, a fat which has
many positive health effects for our body. The seaweed wrap, called Nori, is also rich with essential vitamins and minerals, the wasabi has antibacterial effects, and the ginger served with sushi reportedly improves digestion and blood circulation.

Most fish used in sushi are also high in Omega 3 fatty acids. Since humans do not naturally produce these fats, they are doubly important to human bodies and therefore we must regularly consume them to keep healthy. Omega 3 fatty acids raise the good cholesterol level of our bodies, and are helpful for people with type 2 diabetes, since it assists with the naturalization of blood levels.

Consumption of Omega 3 fatty acids also has great cardiovascular benefits, such as reduced blood clotting and lower blood pressure. They are also great for pregnant and lactating women as they help in the development of babies.

The most popular sushi rolls such as spicy tuna roll, eel roll, avocado roll, and
California roll have a low calorie count.
Most of the popular rolls have a calorie
range of 100-400 calories per roll, and
every roll contains about six to eight

Average eaters usually become satisfied after three or four rolls. Add the soy sauce and wasabi to the tally, which will be roughly an additional 20 calories, the sushi meal becomes healthy, low in fat, and very delicious. One cup of miso soup, which is usually served hot with the meal, has 40 calories.

But with sushi also presents the chance of some known health risks. Especially large fish, such as tuna and swordfish, may contain contaminants such as heavy metals. In fact, the higher level on the food chain a fish occupies, the heavier contaminants it may contain.

Pregnant women should avoid the contaminants such as mercury that are present in the larger predatory fish. Naturally occurring mercury in seawater also contributes to the contaminates found in fish.

Raw seafood can also contain pathogens or bacteria. If sanitary conditions are not available and sushi is not made properly, the meal can make one sick.

Overall, a carefully chosen restaurant
with fresh fish and cleanly handled sushi
will make for a healthy and delicious