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Sushi for weight loss: Is the rice dish healthy?

Many people see sushi as a weight-loss-friendly dish. But is the rice dish really healthy for weight loss? Here's what an expert says.
Sushi for weight loss
Sushi for weight loss: Is the rice dish healthy? Image Courtesy: Adobe Stock
Natalia Ningthoujam Published: 27 Feb 2023, 17:00 pm IST
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When people think of weight loss, they focus on a healthy diet and exercise. We all know that a balanced diet is what we need to get rid of unwanted body fat. But why should we compromise on taste and give up delicious dishes during the weight-loss journey? One of the yummy and healthy dishes that you can think of is a good amount of vegetables, seaweed wraps, fish, and vinegar rice. It sounds like a great option for weight loss. But is sushi healthy enough for weight loss? Read on to know if sushi is good to lose weight.

HealthShots connected with holistic health coach Azhar Ali Sayed, who shared everything you need to know about sushi.

Weight loss sushi
Sushi might be good for weight loss. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

What is a sushi?

Medium-grained rice is cooked in vinegar and combined with raw or cooked fish and a variety of toppings or fillings to make Sushi. Sayed says that contrary to popular opinion, rice, not raw fish, is the key ingredient in sushi. The dish requires a specific kind of vinegar to be used in the preparation of the rice. Rice vinegar, salt, and sugar are the main ingredients of sushi vinegar. This gives the rice its distinctive flavour and a sticky texture that maintains its shape when moulded.

There are numerous varieties of sushi to choose from. There are maki rolls made with rice, seaweed, and various fillings (usually a vegetable or seafood). Nigiri, on the other hand, is rice covered with raw fish. Then there’s temaki, which is a hand roll where nori (aka seaweed) is used as a wrap and filled with rice and fish and/or vegetables (benefits of eating fish).

Is sushi good for weight loss?

The term “sushi” is a broad term as it refers to a wide variety of ingredient combinations. Nonetheless, some varieties of sushi, especially the simpler varieties, can be incorporated into a balanced diet for losing weight. Sushi may be a part of a healthy diet as long as you are careful with the sauces you use and restrict the fried foods like tempura prawns. Sushi’s healthful and light components might be a smart choice if ordered simply when trying to lose weight.

Sushi that includes Omega-3 (omega-3 deficiency signs) fatty acids, which are anti-inflammatory and vital for heart health, are extremely healthy. Fatty fish like salmon and mackerel contain abundant of Omega-3s. Together with other vitamins and minerals like selenium, zinc, and iodine, fish also contains vitamin D and vitamin B12. Some types of sushi like maki and temaki rolls contain dried seaweed that has many nutrients like calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, iron, sodium, iodine, thiamine, and vitamins A, C, and E.

Best and worst sushis for weight loss

Some sushi rolls contain mayo, cream cheese and fried items which are to be avoided when on a weight loss diet.

Weight loss sushi
You can try low calorie sushi options for weight loss. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

Here are two low calorie sushi recipes that you can consider prepare while on a weight loss diet –

1. Tuna roll


• 100 grams of cooked sushi rice
• 1 tablespoon of seasoned rice vinegar
• 1 sheet of nori
• 100 grams of tuna
• 50 grams of cucumber (cut into strips)
• 50 grams of avocado that’s cut lengthwise (how to eat avocado).


• On a sushi mat or a plastic wrap, lay the nori with shiny side down.
• Cook sushi rice, and after that add seasoned rice vinegar
• Once the rice cools down, you’ll be all geared up to roll the sushi
• The rice mixture should be spread onto each sheet of nori. Make sure to leave just a little space without rice on top
• Each roll should be topped with a horizontal line of tuna, cucumber and avocado. Roll nori tightly around these ingredients.
• Continue rolling while removing the plastic wrap as you go.
• In a bowl of water, dip your fingers and run them along the top portion of the nori and then finish rolling. The water helps to seal the roll by keeping it wrapped together.
• Use a sharp knife so that you can slice the roll easily.

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2. Cucumber roll


• 1 sheet of nori
• 100 grams of prepared sushi rice
• 100 grams of Japanese cucumbers (cut into long sticks)


• Place a nori piece right on top of a bamboo mat
• Take sushi rice and spread it on top of the nori.
• Take 1/8 of the cucumber sticks and put it horizontally on the rice, and finally roll it.

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About the Author

Natalia Ningthoujam has written on various subjects - from music to films and fashion to lifestyle - as a journalist in her career that started in 2010. After getting stories from the crime scene, police headquarters, and conducting interviews with celebrities, she is now writing on health and wellness which has become her focus area. ...Read More

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