The Health Benefits of Eating Sushi: Sushi Nutrition Facts

The Health Benefits of Eating Sushi: Sushi Nutrition Facts
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Sushi Decomposed

Sushi is an excellent food to integrate into a healthy diet. Enjoying this fresh, mostly raw, seafood, rice and vegetable dish is a great way to replenish the body with trace minerals, enzymes, and omega-fatty acids, with a minimal amount of calories. Learn about the benefits of eating sushi, all the reasons that this food is not only enjoyable, but remarkably healthy.

Sushi nutrition facts do vary depending on the specific ingredients used. Different types of seafood, vegetables, white rice or brown rice, and how the actual dish is prepared, all impact nutrition; yet, in general, the components of sushi are all heart-healthy and nutrient-rich. There are both sushi rolls, made with small pieces of seafood or vegetables, wrapped in sticky rice and dry seaweed, known as nori; and, nigiri sushi, which consists of a larger piece of a protein or vegetable, rice, and perhaps a small amount of nori. A typical serving of sushi rolls has about four-hundred to six hundred calories. One nigiri, is about thirty to fifty calories, depending on the seafood, accompaniments, and fish-vegetable combinations.

Fresh Seafood Nutrition

Although vegetables, and sometimes even eggs are used, sushi is often made with some type of seafood. Fish and shellfish are excellent, lean sources of protein. They supply the body with minerals — iron, calcium, magnesium, iodine, selenium, phosphorus, and potassium. Seafood is rich in vitamins, with plenty of vitamin A, D, and B-complex vitamins. Fatty fish especially, such as mackerel and salmon, are also an excellent source of omega fatty acids, specifically omega-3 EPA and DHA fatty acids, which are seldom found in other foods.

Benefits of Seaweed

Seaweed is one of the healthiest foods you could eat. It is rich in trace minerals, enzymes, vitamins A, C, D, E, and K. It is excellent for the digestive system, the endocrine system, and the nervous system. The nori used to make sushi has minimal calories, about thirteen for an entire sheet. Sushi does not consist of a large amount of seaweed. For added nutrition, enjoy a seaweed salad with an order of salmon-cucumber or spicy tuna rolls.

Sticky Rice and Vegetables

The overall sushi nutrition facts will vary greatly depending on what kind of rice is used. Sticky white rice, while low in calories, is not a good source of vitamins and minerals. It does supply some iron, manganese, magnesium, and phosphorous, but only a very small amount. Brown rice on the other hand, is a less processed natural food. It is rich in fiber, minerals, and vitamins, particularly the B-complex vitamins.

Often vegetables are integrated into pieces of sushi, or used to make vegetarian sushi. Cucumber, avocado, sea greens, and scallions are frequently used in the west. Cucumber and scallions are rich in vitamin C. Avocado is a wonderful source of omega-fatty acids, vitamin E, K, folate, and potassium. Sea greens are diverse sources of nutrition, with trace minerals, enzymes, and vitamins.


Sushi is usually served with ginger, wasabi, and soy sauce. Both ginger and wasabi are natural stimulants, benefiting the digestive system and improving overall health. Soy sauce, and other sauces, are generally optional, or used sparingly, but they do increase the sodium content of this otherwise remarkably healthy food. Enjoy the benefits of eating sushi once, or even twice a week. It is a heart-healthy, low-fat, nutrient rich substitute for traditional meals.


Weed, Susan s. “Seaweed is an Everyday Miracle.” (Natural Health Web)

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Balch, Phyllis, CNC. “Prescription for Nutritional Healing, 4th Edition.” (The Penguin Group, 2006).

Photo Credit

photo by Syvwich (CC/flickr)