By

Laura was previously the editorial assistant on Healthy Food Guide. She is now a freelance journalist specialising in health, wellbeing, food & travel.

Seafood is a brilliant staple to include in a healthy, balanced diet, but if you’re concerned about sustainability, there’s cheering news as we enter Seafood Week (9–16 October): many home-caught commercial fish species stocks are at their best in years.

But when you shop, do you stick to the same one or two types? In the UK we consume about 8 million kg fish a year and, according to Seafish, the big five make up around 70% of it – that’s salmon, cod, haddock, tuna and prawns.

Nothing wrong with those, but Seafood Week is an opportunity to try other, overlooked UK species. Fishmongers and other retailers are putting on loads of events, with some great offers. Check Seafood Week’s map of events and offers here.

What’s so good about seafood?
Health experts recommend we should enjoy at least two portions of fish a week – one of them oil-rich. Why? Because fish is packed with protein, contains iodine for thyroid health, and oily varieties contribute to the all-important omega-3 intakes for a healthy heart, brain and vision. They’re a perfect package, especially if you’re trying to lose weight, because it keeps you fuller for longer.

7 new species to try
The National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisations (NFFO) has put together this useful list. Its Magnificent Seven of Sustainable Seafood are:
• Mackerel
• Crab
• Megrim
• Plaice
• Coley
• Hake
• Gurnard

All are tasty and some (such as megrim and coley) much cheaper than the big five. Best of all, these fish are easily interchangeable with your favourite Healthy Food Guide recipes! Check out our swaps below.

5 recipes to try using sustainable seafood

 

Fish and chips
Try using plaice fillets in this version of the classic, served with sweet potato chips
Fish-and-chips-makeover

Fish with tomato and caper sauce
Red gurnard would work well against this fruity sauce
Fish-tomato-caper-sauce

Shellfish gratin
Stir some delicious crabmeat through this gratin for added flavour
Shellfish-gratin

Haddock & pea fishcakes
Mackerel works equally well in these easy fishcakes
Fishcakes

Roasted herby fish & potatoes
Swap out cod for meaty hake or megrim in this Mediterranean bake
Gremola-fish1