Perch: nutritional value, benefits and controversies for its consumption

Fish are usually quality foods. But not all of them are recommended. We are going to talk about perch, a cheap option with little nutritional value.

Last update: 24 September, 2022

Perch is a fish that is imported from the African continent and is usually chosen for its low price. However, its nutritional quality is not very good and even its consumption can carry a series of risks. We are going to tell you about the characteristics of this food and why there are better options available, also at a fairly affordable cost.

Before starting, it should be noted that the presence of fish in the guideline is recommended by almost all nutrition experts. These foods that are characterized by concentrating proteins of high biological value and good quality fatty acids. They can also provide essential micronutrients, among which minerals such as iodine stand out.

Nutritional value of perch

From a nutritional point of view, perch provides few calories, just 90 per 100 grams. For this reason, it is usually included in the context of low-calorie diets aimed at weight loss.

Only 5% is fat. Of course, the lipid profile of the food has nothing to do with that of other fish, as is the case with salmon. Fatty acids of the omega 3 series are scarce, elements that have been shown to control inflammation in the internal environment.

Perch is not a remarkable fish at a nutritional level.

Of course, the proteins are more significant in the perch. It has 12% of total calories from these nutrients. They are of high biological value, so their digestibility is ensured.

Also, all the essential amino acids are present inside, something decisive in order to avoid the development of pathologies that affect lean mass. At least, it is necessary to ensure a consumption of 0.8 grams of protein per kilo of weight per day in sedentary people, according to a study published in Annals of Nutrition & Metabolism.

In any case, the protein concentration is still lower than that of other fish, such as bonito or tuna. We could be talking about 20% of energy from these nutrients, a value that will help meet daily needs. In the case of athletes, it has been shown that the requirements can easily double or triple.

The iodine of the perch can be highlighted, this being an essential mineral for the proper functioning of the thyroid gland. However, there are many other marine products that provide this element with a much more adequate nutrient profile. Therefore, it is also not a reason to include perch in the diet on a regular basis.

contaminants in perch

As with other fish, perch can be contaminated with heavy metals.

In addition to its lower nutritional value compared to other fish, perch may contain contaminants inside. Something similar happens to pangasius, another low-quality food chosen mainly for its low price.

The truth is that the consumption of some heavy metals such as mercury would damage the neuronal connectionsthus generating a greater risk in the medium term of developing neurodegenerative pathologies.

It is true that perch has to go through a series of quality processes to reach the fishmongers to ensure that it is an edible product, but this does not mean that the concentration of microplastics or heavy metals is higher than that of other marine foods. Better to pay a little more and get a high value grocery at a nutritional level that can help cover daily requirements.

For example, fish such as cockerels or lilies are also cheap and have a much higher profile. Not only do they provide more quality protein and minerals, but they also contain fatty acids from the omega 3 series, essential elements to maintain good health over the years. On the other hand, it is key to highlight that whenever possible it is preferable to consume wild fish than farmed versions, since in this case the proportion of lipids would be altered.

Perch, a fish with little nutritional value

As you have been able to verify, perch is a fish that has a low nutritional quality. It can be found in many supermarkets both fresh and frozen, but it is not an option to take too much into account.

It does not provide a sufficient amount of unsaturated lipids and proteins. It could even be a source of certain pollutants or heavy metals, making the risks outweigh the benefits in relation to its consumption.

To finish, it should be noted that perch is not the only product from the sea that should be avoided. Panga is another fairly common food in certain commercial areas that is not recommended at all.

The same thing happens a bit as far as nutrients are concerned, with the particularity that the concentration of toxic elements could be even higher. In fact, many chains have refused to market it to safeguard the health of consumers.

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