How healthy is a tuna sandwich

Is a tuna sandwich healthy?

Busy people are always on the hunt for quick, healthy meals. Many tuna sandwiches are loaded with mayonnaise and served on highly processed bread. This is not a healthy choice.

For a healthy tuna sandwich, choose whole wheat bread, a low-fat mayo substitute, and other nutritious ingredients. (Image: istetiana / Moment / GettyImages)

Your tuna sandwich is only as healthy as the ingredients you make it with, so make your choices Whole grain bread, fresh vegetables, and other nutritious ingredients to combine with your tuna. A simple substitute for mayo and high-nutrient add-ins can make your healthy tuna sandwich just as delicious.


Due to the mercury content in canned tuna, this sandwich shouldn't appear on your menu more than once or twice a week.

Fat, calories, and protein in tuna

Tuna is low in fat, low in calories, high in protein, and a good source Vitamins and minerals. A 3-ounce serving of light tuna preserved in water provides just 73 calories and less than a gram of fat. If you are watching your weight, this is a great lean protein option.

Choose fresh tuna or canned tuna for a low-calorie, low-fat sandwich. Oiled varieties have 158 calories and 7 grams of fat in 3 ounces. While this fat is primarily healthy, polyunsaturated fat that can improve heart health when eaten instead of saturated fat, tuna in oil also has a small amount of saturated fat - 1 gram per serving.

There are 16.5 grams of protein in 3 ounces of light canned tuna in water. Tuna canned in oil contains slightly more protein at 22.5 grams per 3 ounces. Packing with protein is essential for health. As a building block of all body cells as well as muscles, bones and other tissues, protein is necessary for biological function. Proteins also support the production of antibodies, enzymes and hormones.

A serving of tuna provides a good serving of the protein that adults need every day. The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for protein is 46 grams for women and 56 grams for men, according to the Food and Nutrition Board.

A serving of light tuna in water consumes 36 percent of a woman's daily needs and 29 percent of the protein a man needs every day. Canned tuna provides 49 percent and 40 percent of the RDA for women and men, respectively.

Continue reading: Can Eating Tuna Every Day Be Harmful?

Choose your bread wisely

Bread is often demonized, especially among low-carb dieters. But unless you're trying to lower your carbohydrate intake, there's nothing wrong with bread in moderation. However, to keep your tuna sandwich healthy, you need to choose the right type of bread.

Healthy bread consists of whole grain products. Is your best choice 100 percent whole grain bread. Whole grains are complex carbohydrates. During processing, the grain remains intact with its bran, germ and endosperm. Refined grains, on the other hand, which includes white bread, have removed at least one of the components of a grain: bran, germ, or endosperm.

Intact whole grains are a good source of fiber, vitamins, and minerals. They digest slowly, resulting in stable blood sugar and energy. Refined grains are not a good source of nutrients, though - although they can be fortified - and without the fiber, the carbohydrates in refined grain bread can cause blood sugar spikes. If your blood sugar rises rapidly after a meal, it falls just as quickly, causing an "energy crash". Fluctuations in blood sugar levels can lead to fatigue, moods, cravings and hunger.

Full of fiber

Two slices of 100% whole grain bread have 6 grams of fiber. Fiber helps keep blood sugar stable by slowing digestion so sugar doesn't get into your bloodstream as quickly. Fiber is also vital to digestive health as it gives stool bulk and makes it easier for it to pass.

Getting enough fiber can help prevent constipation, as well as other GI problems that can lead to more serious conditions like colon cancer. Fiber also helps lower cholesterol by removing some fats from the bloodstream so that cells cannot absorb them. Last, High fiber foods fill you up better than high fiber foods, This can help you control your calorie intake and body weight.

Essential vitamins and minerals in every bite

Your healthy tuna sandwich recipe contains many of the vitamins and minerals you need on a daily basis. Tuna is high in B vitamins, including niacin and B12.

As a group, B vitamins support energy and metabolism. Niacin is required for hundreds of enzymatic reactions, as well as catabolic reactions that help convert fats, carbohydrates, and protein into adenosine triphosphate, or ATP (the body's main energy source). Vitamin B12 is necessary for healthy red blood cell production, neurological function and DNA synthesis.

The RDA for niacin is 14 milligrams for women and 18 for men. Three ounces of light tuna in water conserves 61 percent of a woman's daily needs and 48 percent of a man's needs. The recommended daily allowance for B12 is 2.4 micrograms for men and women, and a serving of tuna provides almost 100 percent.

Tuna is also a good source of phosphorus, a mineral necessary for healthy bones, energy production, and cell signaling. Three ounces of tuna contain 17 percent of the recommended daily allowance for both men and women. Tuna is also a rich source of iron at 1.4 milligrams in 3 ounces. Women get 8 percent of their daily iron requirement and men 18 percent of their requirement from a serving of tuna.

Mix up a nutritious tuna salad

Most people don't just eat plain tuna on bread when they want a tuna sandwich. It is usually mixed with mayonnaise - often a lot of mayonnaise. Mayonnaise is a concentrated source of calories and fat and offers few other nutrients. Just 2 tablespoons of mayonnaise has 188 calories and 20 grams of fat. Although this fat is mostly polyunsaturated and monounsaturated, one serving contains 3 grams of saturated fat.

Ditch the mayonnaise for a healthier option that is just as tasty. Greek yogurt is thick, rich, and creamy, just like mayo, but much lower in calories and fat. Two tablespoons of low-fat Greek yogurt has only 20 calories and 0.5 grams of fat. Unlike mayo, Greek yogurt contains protein, calcium, phosphorus, potassium, and other essential nutrients. When you've finished your traditional tuna sandwich recipe with lemon juice, mustard, celery, onions, capers, and spices, you'll achieve the same flavor as mayo.

But don't stop. Keep things interesting by doing a Gourmet tuna sandwich. Switch up your tuna sandwich recipe and add flaked almonds, chopped shallots, olives, chopped apples, kale, or Swiss chard. Try unique spices like tarragon and cumin.

And don't forget about the toppings that will add more nourishment to your sandwich. Try sliced ​​boiled eggs for some extra egg white, fresh spinach leaves, or sliced ​​tomatoes. With all this variety, you will never be bored with a healthy tuna sandwich.

Mercury concerns

While the tuna is healthy, the mercury levels are not. Mercury, which occurs naturally in the environment and also comes from air pollution, is a toxin that can cause immediate and long-term poisoning.

All types of canned tuna contain mercury, but some types are worse than others. Canned white tuna or albacore, has the highest mercury content, and the Environmental Defense Fund warns women shouldn't eat more than three 6-ounce servings and men shouldn't eat more than three 8-ounce servings per month. Children aged 6 to 12 years shouldn't eat more than two 4.5-ounce servings a month, and Children under six years of age shouldn't have more than a 3-ounce serving per month.

Canned light tuna is a safer choice, and adults can eat one serving once a week. However, pay attention to the labels on which it says "Gourmet" or "Tonno" can contain as much mercury as canned white tuna. Children under six can have up to three 3-ounce servings per month, and older children can eat as much as adults.

Even better, make your sandwich with canned salmonThat is high in impurities and high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are good for the heart and brain.

Continue reading: Yellowfin Tuna Diet