Sushi, a dieter’s friend or foe? …it depends on how you order

November 25, 2013 by  
Filed under Nutrition Tips

If you live in Vancouver, it’s hard to not develop a love affair with sushi. But the truth is for sushi to be ‘healthy’ you must choose wisely. You can easily hit your daily quota for calories and sodium in one meal if you aren’t careful, not to mention most sushi falls short on fibre. I have dug up the nutrition information for some popular sushi items below to help you navigate your options:

  • 1 piece Nigiri (raw fish/seafood on rice) = ~60 calories, 5g protein
  • 1 piece sashimi (~ 1oz raw fish/seafood)= ~30 calories, 5g protein
  • Cucumber Roll = 135 calories
  • California Roll (6 pieces) = 255 calories
  • Tuna Roll = 185 calories
  • Spicy Tuna Roll = 290 calories
  • Dynamite Roll = 500 calories
  • Miso Soup (1 cup) = 40-70 calories (depending on tofu)
  • Edamame (1 cup in pods = ~3/4 cup of beans) = 150 calories, 12g protein, 6g fibre
  • 1 piece Tempura = ~145 calories
  • 1 tbsp Soy Sauce =  10 calories, 900-1000mg Sodium

As you can see, not all sushi is created equally. So next time you place your order, here’s what I recommend:

Starch: For women, one sushi roll (6 pieces) and for men 1.5 rolls (9 pieces) is appropriate. Avoid rolls with tempura, cream cheese, extra mayonnaise or creamy drizzles (these yummy extras will cost you serious calories). And always remember to choose brown rice, it’s a whole grain and has more fibre than white (every little bit counts!)

Protein: For women, order 3 pieces (3oz) of sashimi and 5 pieces for the men; this will cover your protein needs. Dislike raw fish? Choose a serving of edamame instead…and you’ll get the added bonus of 6g of filling fibre!

Vegetables: Always ask for a side of steamed veggies-they add bulk and will help the meal last you longer. Add the veggies to a small bowl of miso soup for a little more excitement ;)