Eat this, not that
Unlike the Japanese, who favour sashimi and nigiri-style sushi, the vast majority of sushi consumed in this country comes in roll form. And nowhere does the potential for seriously healthy eats or nutritional negligence oscillate so wildly than in these rice-stuffed seaweed bites. Better take a second to digest our version of a roll call, listed from best to worst. (Nutrition stats are for an entire 6 to 8 piece roll.)
By MH Staff - Posted on 24th November 2011
Eat this, not that
1 Rainbow Roll
Nori, rice, avocado, surimi, plus a variety of raw fish arranged on top476 calories 16 g fat 33 g protein 6 g fiber 50 g carbohydrates Higher in calories than most rolls you’ll find, but loaded as this is with substantial portions of myriad raw fish, most of those calories are the good kind. Rainbow rolls are typically large, so a single order and a bowl of miso soup make a filling dinner.
2 Cucumber Roll
Nori, rice, cucumber136 calories 0 g fat 6 g protein 3.5 g fiber 30 g carbohydrates It’s hard to go wrong with cucumbers and seaweed. Though not a nutritional powerhouse, cucumbers are a low-calorie delivery system for vitamins A and C, fibre, and silica, a compound that has been shown to foster healthy skin.
3 Avocado Roll
Nori, rice, avocado140 calories 5.5 g fat 2 g protein 6 g fiber 28 g carbohydrates Most of the calories in this vegetarian roll come from healthy monounsaturated fats. Avocado makes a great addition to any roll, since a sushi-size portion also contains about 3 grams of fiber.
4 Tuna Roll
Nori, rice, tuna184 calories 2 g fat 24 g protein 3.5 g fiber 27 g carbohydrates More than half of the calories in this simple, classic roll come from protein, making it a great light meal or a snack with substance.
5 California Roll
Nori, rice, avocado, surimi255 calories 7 g fat 9 g protein 6 g fiber 38 g carbohydrates The ubiquitous fusion roll is a great beginner’s foray into the potential of sushi, since there’s no raw fish involved. There are also no real healthy fats either (aside from the avocado, of course), since the fake crab (made from a variety of processed and compressed fish) has 1⁄15 the amount of omega-3s as the real stuff.
6 Spicy Tuna Roll
Nori, rice, tuna, mayo, chili sauce290 calories 11 g fat 24 g protein 3.5 g fiber 26 g carbohydrates In the world of sushi, “spicy” means a spoonful of mayo spiked with an Asian chili sauce. The calorie counts can climb higher than this, depending on how heavy a hand the sushi chef has with the spicy stuff. Either way, you’re better off satisfying your need for heat with a touch of wasabi.
7 Philadelphia Roll
Nori, rice, salmon, cream cheese, cucumber290 calories 12 g fat (5 g saturated) 14 g protein 2 g fiber 28 g carbohydrates Just like the mayo adds empty calories to an otherwise reliable spicy tuna roll, cream cheese blankets perfectly fine salmon and cucumber with an unnecessary measure of fat.
8 Salmon and Avocado Roll
Nori, rice, salmon, avocado304 calories 8.5 g fat 13 g protein 6 g fiber 42 g carbohydrates High in calories, but nearly all of those calories come from the one-two punch of healthy fats found in the salmon and the avocado.
9 Eel and Avocado Roll
Nori, rice, avocado, eel372 calories 17 g fat 20 g protein 6 g fiber 31 g carbohydrates Eel brings a solid helping of omega-3s to the sushi bar, but unfortunately, it’s almost always covered in a gloppy, sugary brown sauce that masks both the nutrition and the delicate natural flavor of this wily sea creature. If you opt for this roll, make it your only one of the night.
10 Shrimp Tempura Roll
Nori, rice, shrimp, tempura batter, oil for frying508 calories 21 g fat 20 g protein 4.5 g fiber 64 g carbohydrates Why take a perfectly good piece of lean shrimp and ruin it with thick batter and a hot oil bath? The joy of fried food—the crunch—is snuffed out by the moist rice, so this one doesn’t make sense from either a flavor or a nutritional perspective.
Eat this, not that