Anyone who knows will be aware of how much I love eating fish and how central it is to my diet.
As far as fish is concerned, tuna is pretty much up there as being a great food for anyone interested in maintaining a healthy diet. You typically get 30 grammes of protein to every 100 grammes of tuna bluefin, for example (which also typically contains 0.5 grammes of fat and 100 calories).
In addition, you get a good dose iron and potassium in the same serving, while Albacore and bluefin tuna have the highest levels of omega-3 fatty acids, which helps reduce fatty acids and cholesterol in the arteries and blood vessels. In fact, the combination of omega-3 fatty acids, along with potassium - which is a vasodilator - make tuna fish great for helping prevent heart attacks and strokes, as well as atherosclerosis.
Tuna also has impressive levels of selenium and good amounts of phosphorous, iron, magnesium and potassium, whilst you also get vitamin B12 and niacin, together with vitamin B6 and riboflavin in the same serving.
The potassium and sodium content in tuna is also well-balanced, which helps to manage the fluid balance in the body, allowing the kidneys to function properly without undue stress, which in turn lowers the chances of developing serious kidney conditions.
When tuna is cooked the proteins in it begins to break down into fragments, called peptides, and these can be powerful antioxidants that specifically target cell membranes, keeping them healthy, strong and functioning properly.
Free radicals often attack membranes throughout the body, including those in the brain, so eating cooked tuna and improving membrane protection is a very good idea.
On the flip side, tuna, as with all fish, contains small levels of methyl-mercury, and when eaten in modest quantities, they do not appear to harm humans, though in larger quantities mercury poisoning may take place.
Finally, studies suggest that over-consumption of tuna may bring the mercury level to an unhealthy level in our bodies, though most recent studies have also shown that there is a unique form of selenium, called selenoneine in the fish which binds to mercury and acts as an antioxidant, slightly changing the composition of mercury to make it less dangerous. Studies continue in this area, so further developments are likely in this regard.
So, there you have it: Tuna is big on protein, vitamin and mineral bomb.