What’s a pescetarian?


Eat fish and you’ll protect your heart, plus you’ll stay smarter and happier and— no joke— have a better sex life. Go vegetarian and you’ll be thinner, dramatically reduce your risk of developing heart disease and cancer, and live longer. But why not have it all? You can! Our new book, The Pescetarian Plan, combines the two eating styles and shows you how to be pescetarian. Pescetarians eat a vegetarian diet with the addition of seafood (the term comes from pesce, the Italian word for fish).

Pescetarians eat everything except meat and poultry.    So, for instance, a pescetarian might eat the following:

Breakfast:  Cereal, milk (or non-dairy milk), fruit and nuts

Treat:  Piece of dark chocolate

Lunch:  Grilled cheese sandwich with sticks of celery, red pepper and carrots

Snack:  Trail mix

Dinner:  Piece of grilled fish (or shrimp, scallops or other seafood) with sautéed spinach and a slice of garlic bread (or a side of quinoa or other grains, or potatoes or sweet potatoes)

Easy and delicious!  Pescetarianism is very do-able whether you like to cook or would rather spend little time in the kitchen.  For instance, you can open a can of salmon and make a quick filling for your sandwich, or create a fabulous dish starting with fresh salmon.

It’s a way of eating you can take anywhere—in restaurants, on vacation, even in a convenience store (yogurt, banana and nuts anyone?).  And if you do wind up at a dinner party where chicken or beef is the entrée, that’s OK, go ahead and have it.  As long as you normally follow a pescetarian pattern, you’re getting its fantastic health benefits; the occasional poultry or meat won’t derail that.  (But just occasional!)

What are those health benefits?  Eat along the lines of The Pescetarian Plan which puts a Mediterranean spin on pescetarianism, and you could have a longer life, a trimmer body, and reduced risk of diseases such as heart disease, cancer, type 2 diabetes and dementia.  This way of eating can also boost mood.  Click here to find out more.

By Janis Jibrin, RD and Chef Sidra Forman