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Articles Fitness Nutrition

The Nutrition of Crabcakes

Crabcakes are a popular food found along the eastern seaboard. You'll want to consider the nutritional contents of crab cakes to decide whether you want to include them as part of a healthy diet.

Cholesterol

Fish is often thought of as being one of the best protein sources available. Not only is it rich in omega-3 fatty acids, it is also a great lean meat. While both of these things are true about crab meat, there is one negative factor to keep in mind. Shellfish such as crab is very high in dietary cholesterol. Eating foods that are high in cholesterol is dangerous because it can lead to damage of the arteries, causing cardiovascular disease or even death. While it is okay to eat crabcakes every now and then, they shouldn't be consumed more than once or twice a month.

Fat

Crabcakes are sky high in fat. They're often made with mayonnaise, which contains lots of saturated fat. Like cholesterol, saturated fat has been linked to the development of cardiovascular disease, stroke and even some cancers. While there are some brands of mayonnaise now being sold as containing olive oil, don't be fooled. There may be a bit of olive oil in the product (which is gaining in popularity due to the fact that is has unsaturated instead of saturated fat, and therefore prevents and treats some of the conditions caused by saturated fats), there is still a lot of the saturated fat found in the mayonnaise. In addition, crabcakes are typically fried. This adds tons of calories to your meal. When making crabcakes at home, try baking instead of frying. If you must fry your crabcakes, use olive oil. While this is still very high in calories, at least you'll be getting unsaturated instead of saturated fat in your diet.

Vegetables

Crabcakes do usually have some sort of vegetable, often carrots or celery. These are an important addition to crabcakes for a number of reasons. Vegetables contain numerous vitamins and minerals that are important for good health. They also contain lots of dietary fiber, which has been found to be effective in the treatment and prevention of a number of dangerous conditions, including cardiovascular disease and cancer. Fiber is great for people who are dieting because it is "bulky," meaning that it takes up a lot of room in your stomach, making you feel full and preventing overeating more calorically dense foods.

Salt

Crabcakes are typically loaded in salt. Like fat and cholesterol, salt can lead to and further exacerbate cardiovascular disease. When making crabcakes at home, try to avoid added extra salt as much as possible. There will still be enough in the ingredients to make the crabcakes taste great.

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