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Shrimp and High Blood Pressure

Shrimp is a type of sea food which is known to elevate cholesterol levels. A serving of 3.5 ounces of shrimp has approximately 200 mg of cholesterol. That’s a full day’s allotment for a person with heart disease. For everyone else, that is 100 mg short of the 300 mg limit. This makes shrimp a no-no for people with high blood pressure.

In spite of this however, shrimp has healthy benefits. More specifically, shrimp has omega-3 fat content. The 3.5 ounces of shrimp that gives 200 mg cholesterol also contains around 350 mg of omega-3 fatty acids. This omega 3 fatty acid is composed of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Yup, it’s the same DHA in the milk advertisement that makes the baby intelligent. EPA and DHA are especially important for cardiovascular and nervous system health.

Moreover, shrimp also has omega-3:omega-6 fats which is associated with decreased risk of many chronic diseases such as obesity, high blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes. Finally, shrimp also contains beta-sitosterol, campesterol, and brassicasterol, which function as anti-inflammatory molecules which help decrease LDL or bad cholesterol.

In lieu of these recent findings, the traditional idea that shrimp is bad because of its high cholesterol content which can blood pressure to rise is currently being challenged because of its omega-3 and sterol contents. Nevertheless, future studies are still needed to truly verify if indeed shrimp is bad or good for the heart. In the mean time, it would be advisable that people especially those with heart disease regulate their intake of shrimp. After all, anything excessive is bad for the health.

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