Seafood are animals and plants gotten from the sea that are eaten as food. Not every animal or plant in the water is edible, however, as some can be poisonous. Also, the kind of seafood eaten depends on the region.
In Nigeria, seafood is a popular part of the Nigerian diet. This is mostly because there are bodies of water in and around Nigeria. The different cultures in Nigeria have different ways of preparing these seafoods and also the particular seafood they prefer.
Today, we would be looking at some of the healthy seafoods we have in Nigeria.
Fish forms a core part of the Nigerian diet, often taking the place of beef, chicken, or any other form of meat. According to World Fish Center, fish accounts for about 40 percent of the Nigeria’s protein intake, with fish consumption at 13.3 kg per person annually. It is usually used in preparing dishes like soups, stews, and even porridge. It can be boiled, fried, or even roasted. Most of the seafood in Nigeria comes from coastal areas like Lagos, Delta, Rivers, Bayelsa, and other states in the South-South region, although some other states, like Kebbi, Ondo, Taraba, are also known for their fishing activities, due to the presence of rivers in those areas.
Many Nigerians also have fish ponds in their homes where they rear fish for personal consumption or as a form of business. The most common reared fish in Nigeria is catfish. This is because it is a freshwater fish and requires very little investment to get started.
But besides catfish, Nigerians also eat other kinds of fish like tilapia, crayfish, croaker, salmon, mackerel (sardines), stockfish, and so on. Some of these fish, like stockfish, are imported because they are not found in waters around Nigeria.
Fish is a good source of animal protein and also rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, which reduces bad cholesterol levels in the blood as well as boosts the function of the brain. Fish also contains fewer calories than other kinds of food, which makes it a great addition to those that want to lose weight.
Shrimp belongs to the crustacean family. The shrimp in Nigeria is usually small, measuring only a few centimetres because they come from cold waters. It is soft and brittle and can be eaten raw after it has been dried. It is used as a cooking ingredient, rather than a topping. When added to food, shrimp helps to enhance the aroma and taste of the food, which is why it is commonly used in preparing local dishes. Shrimps are one of the most popular seafoods in Nigeria.
shrimp is rich in nutrients like vitamin A, B vitamins, protein, copper, selenium, iron, zinc, Omega-3 fatty acids, and so on. This makes it a very healthy addition to your diet.
Prawns are like shrimp but a lot bigger. They have a hard shell that has to be removed before they can be eaten. They also have to be cooked first. Unlike shrimps, prawns can serve as toppings as they are quite fleshy, which means there is a lot to eat. The most common type found in the county are the Nigerian tiger prawns. They are also very healthy, and nutritious.
Also known as sea snail, periwinkle is mostly used by people from the South-South region of Nigeria, where it is used in making soups. Banga soup and Afang soup both go well with periwinkles. It is small and has a hard shell, which has to be removed before it can be used to cook. Periwinkles are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, selenium, magnesium and are also an excellent source of protein. These makes periwinkles one of the healthiest seafoods in Nigeria.