Lobster is a food with a fun and fascinating history as well as some great nutritional benefits. Some historians even call the Maine lobster America’s aphrodisiac. Lobster nutrition is without question part of this crustacean’s popularity and aphrodisiac status. But there’s definitely more to lobster’s charms…
What makes Maine lobster an aphrodisiac?
Some experts in psychology believe that much of the power of aphrodisiacs is the power of persuasion. For the lobster, this is undoubtably true! In fact, lobster’s history as a natural aphrodisiac deals mainly with its status as a symbol of luxury. Pamper someone you love with whole, steamed lobster or tails already lifted from the shell. It is a powerful enticement, no?
Like all foods of the sea, the lobster’s aphrodisiac history can be traced back to the ancient Greeks. They believed the goddess of love, Aphrodite, was born of the sea and that all ocean creatures were her playthings in the games of love.
About the spiny lobster
The spiny lobster of tropical waters is not truly a lobster, but shares many attributes with its cousin from Maine, including an image as a potent aphrodisiac. On Ambergris Caye, Belize, a dish called Lobster Chechak is considered the local love food of choice. And several recipes throughout the Bahamas promote the spiny shellfish as an opulent aphrodisiac.
How many calories are in a serving of lobster?
Because it tastes and feels decadent many seafood lovers worry about the calories in lobster. But lobster is, in fact, a fairly low calorie form of protein. According to consumer reports, a 3.5 ounce serving of lobster contains only 89 calories. That’s a lot less per ounce than most popular proteins!
Lobster as a source of protein
As for protein, this is one of the greatest benefits of lobster nutrition. A single 89 calorie serving of lobster has 19 grams of protein. And because that serving only comes with one gram of fat, lobster is one of the leanest sources of animal protein you can find.
In my research, I discovered that Dr. George Belham’s 1968 guide to living like a lothario, The Virility Diet: A Famous Doctor’s Advice on How to Remain Sexually Active Throughout Your Adult Life, recommended the crustacean for a healthy diet. I believe it’s likely because of the high protein content that the good doctor considered this luxury crustacean as an integral part of his libido-lifting diet.
More quick facts on lobster nutrition
Although at the time lobsters came into vogue as a food of luxury it was likely unknown just how beneficial they are to our overall health (not to mention sexual health), we now know that lobsters contain many of the nutrients necessary for peak sexual health.
Lobsters are a source of zinc, selenium and B-12, all necessary nutrients for maintaining sexual desire. But they also contain a surprising amount of vital nutrients including choline, known for supporting brain health and mood-boosting omega-3 fatty acids. And they’re a source of vitamin E. They’re also a good source of two nutrients that support bone heath, calcium and phosphorus.
If you’re wondering about the cholesterol in lobster, you are right to question this important lobster nutrition fact. It’s true that lobster is high in cholesterol. (It contains about 212 milligrams of cholesterol per cup–that’s a lot.) However, it is believed that the cholesterol in a low fat food such as lobster is not potentially that harmful to heart health and sexual health. And since lobster is considered a sometimes indulgence rather than an everyday food, most experts urge healthy adults not to worry.
If you want to reap the lobster nutrition benefits along with the aphrodisiac benefits of this indulgence of the sea, I believe that serving it simply, steamed and straight out of the shell is the way to go. (You might want to add a side of drawn butter to lick from your lover’s fingers.)
But if you want to get a little more adventurous, I invite you to try my version of a lobster roll, which isn’t actually a roll at all. My riff on this New England tradition is served on multigrain bread and topped with the crunch of kettle-cooked potato chips.
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