21-Day Vegan Kickstart

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Forums: April 2012 Kickstart Forum: Shellfish
Created on: 04/04/12 02:34 PM Views: 1405 Replies: 10
Shellfish
Posted Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 2:34 PM

I am having trouble giving up shellfish. When I went to Dr. Barnard's seminar, he talked about fish and their actual fat content, which was almost enough to give up being a pescetarian, but then I wondered about shrimp and other shellfish. Shrimp have no fat and a decent amount of protein.
And I know that they're very easy for your body to digest. When I would buy shellfish, I always went to a fresh catch market right on my street so I knew the quality was good.
I think I need some more convincing before I go full vegan but for the first 3 days of the kickstart, I have not had any shellfish.
Any chance someone could help me out with understanding this particular aspect?

RE: Shellfish
Posted Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 2:44 PM

CareWarr wrote:

I am having trouble giving up shellfish. When I went to Dr. Barnard's seminar, he talked about fish and their actual fat content, which was almost enough to give up being a pescetarian, but then I wondered about shrimp and other shellfish. Shrimp have no fat and a decent amount of protein.
And I know that they're very easy for your body to digest. When I would buy shellfish, I always went to a fresh catch market right on my street so I knew the quality was good.
I think I need some more convincing before I go full vegan but for the first 3 days of the kickstart, I have not had any shellfish.
Any chance someone could help me out with understanding this particular aspect?

Uh, well, most shellfish are scavengers and filter feeders and bottom dwellers. They're basically feeding off the slime and scraps. If that's not enough to turn one away from them, I don't know what would. Shrimp, particularly, tend to be high sodium foods as well.

--Deb R

RE: Shellfish
Posted Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 2:44 PM

Wow, sounds like you are trying to convince yourself. You don't have to give up anything you are not ready to give up.

- madeline

madeline yakimchuk
Director: MEET IRENE - An Unlikely Vegan
GRYPHON media productions

www
RE: Shellfish
Posted Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 2:52 PM

Great question. Besides being a common carrier of food borne illnesses, shellfish are EXTREMELY high in cholesterol. Protein can easily be consumed from much healthier, fiber-full sources like beans, grains, and vegetables.

Susan Levin, MS, RD
PCRM Director of Nutrition Education

RE: Shellfish
Posted Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 3:02 PM

Susan Levin wrote:

Great question. Besides being a common carrier of food borne illnesses, shellfish are EXTREMELY high in cholesterol. Protein can easily be consumed from much healthier, fiber-full sources like beans, grains, and vegetables.

Great! Thanks for getting back to me so quickly! This is definitely the kind of infomation I was looking for! Thanks gryphonpro too!

RE: Shellfish
Posted Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 3:03 PM

Susan Levin wrote:

Great question. Besides being a common carrier of food borne illnesses, shellfish are EXTREMELY high in cholesterol. Protein can easily be consumed from much healthier, fiber-full sources like beans, grains, and vegetables.

Great! Thanks for getting back to me so quickly! This is definitely the kind of information I was looking for! Thanks gryphonpro too!

RE: Shellfish
Posted Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 3:45 PM

Well, I can't speak to the sodium/fat content aspect of shellfish or even the taste since I don't eat shellfish, but I can speak to another aspect. As a fisheries ecologist I can tell you these things:

Crustaceans, shrimps, crabs, lobsters, etc. really are the insects of the seas as all belong to the subphylum arthropoda along with spiders, scorions, millipedes, crickets and weevils. The fact that they are filter feeders isn't as disturbing as some might imagine since much of what they filter is plankton. The problem comes from the build-up of toxins and that, unforunately, can be laid squarely on our own front door, not theirs. Additionally, the explosion in farmed shrimp has had a profound impact on low lying coastal ecosystems where the farming occurs. Shrimp farming can range from low-intensive to super intensive and essentially turns coastal areas into factory farms for shrimp resulting in a massive amount of pollutants (pesticides, antibiotics,non-organic fertilizer etc.) being flushed into coastal areas. In addition, many wild harvests employ the use of what is known as a drag net or otter trawl that essentially drags the net along the bottom of the ocean floor. Although the use of fin excluders can keep ground fish out of the harvest I doubt many internationally based industrial fishers do so and the damage to the sea floor following that type of trawl leaves it looking like the aftermath of some terrible bombing.

Besides, they are so beautiful in the wild it's just a damn shame to eat them IMHO.

Hope this helps!

RE: Shellfish
Posted Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 4:20 PM

SpongeBobFishpants wrote:

Well, I can't speak to the sodium/fat content aspect of shellfish or even the taste since I don't eat shellfish, but I can speak to another aspect. As a fisheries ecologist I can tell you these things:

Crustaceans, shrimps, crabs, lobsters, etc. really are the insects of the seas as all belong to the subphylum arthropoda along with spiders, scorions, millipedes, crickets and weevils. The fact that they are filter feeders isn't as disturbing as some might imagine since much of what they filter is plankton. The problem comes from the build-up of toxins and that, unforunately, can be laid squarely on our own front door, not theirs. Additionally, the explosion in farmed shrimp has had a profound impact on low lying coastal ecosystems where the farming occurs. Shrimp farming can range from low-intensive to super intensive and essentially turns coastal areas into factory farms for shrimp resulting in a massive amount of pollutants (pesticides, antibiotics,non-organic fertilizer etc.) being flushed into coastal areas. In addition, many wild harvests employ the use of what is known as a drag net or otter trawl that essentially drags the net along the bottom of the ocean floor. Although the use of fin excluders can keep ground fish out of the harvest I doubt many internationally based industrial fishers do so and the damage to the sea floor following that type of trawl leaves it looking like the aftermath of some terrible bombing.

Besides, they are so beautiful in the wild it's just a damn shame to eat them IMHO.

Hope this helps!

Wow thank you! Yet another reason not to eat them. I could have stopped reading after the "insects of the sea" part and walked away convinced but all that extra info really sealed the deal. Thanks so much!

RE: Shellfish
Posted Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 7:04 PM

I know shrimp have a lot more cholesterol than many other fish.

RE: Shellfish
Posted Thursday, April 5, 2012 at 6:42 AM

Years ago, when I first became veg, seafood was the last thing I gave up. I lived in Florida, so you can imagine. One day I was watching a tv documentary about sea life, and for an hour I watched all these amazing creatures that no one sees, since they live on the bottom parts of the ocean. You got to watch their lives, some of these animals were just breathtakingly beautiful! The last 5 minutes of the show was a ship trawler raking the bottom of the ocean, pulling up all of these animals. They let them die on the ship floor while taking in 5 lbs of shrimp. All of these animals died so the fisherman could catch 5 lbs of shrimp. Was such a waste of life to me. I sat there bawling for awhile and I never touched seafood again.

RE: Shellfish
Posted Thursday, April 5, 2012 at 9:22 AM

This not related to shellfish necessarily but in dr.Esselstyn's book, he talks about farmed fish (assume this applies to any farmed animal in the sea) and how they were starved for a week before they were "harvested". This way their GI tract will be empty... Yet another unrelated topic, last night I watched the 2nd part of a 3-part documentary (PBS Nature) about the dolphins and the whales, and it was amazing!


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