7 Reasons to Consider Going Pescatarian

By January 26, 2016Nutrition

I’ve been appearing as a weight-loss expert on ABC’s reality weight-loss show My Diet Is Better Than Yours, and in a recent episode I put my client on a pescatarian diet.

The show’s premise it to pit different dietary theories against each other to see which plans work. Going in to the show, I chose to use my preferred diet to be as authentic as possible throughout the series. Paired with a martial arts workout for fitness, my approach is called the Strong, Safe & Sexy plan.

Regardless of the numbers on the scale, I felt confident that I was putting my client on a diet that was the overall healthiest for long-term wellness.

A pescatarian diet is a vegetarian diet with the inclusion of fish and seafood. Therefore, a pescatarian does not eat any flesh from any other animals outside of fish or seafood: no cows, lamb, pigs, turkeys, ducks or chickens.

We pescatarians get our protein from fish, eggs, dairy and plant-based sources like beans, nuts and seeds. A pescatarian diet can be similar to a Mediterranean diet or a Japanese diet (minus small amounts of meat), which are still touted as some of the healthiest ways to eat to reduce your chances of developing a lifestyle-related disease.

You get the known benefits of a vegetarian lifestyle with the proven health effects of omega-3 fatty acids from fish, making this diet a powerful link to long-term health. Here are seven reasons to consider a pescatarian diet:

1. You’ll be adding anti-inflammatory fats to your diet.
Anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids are underrepresented in the average American diet of factory-farmed meat, wheat, sugar and refined vegetable oils. All of these foods in the Standard American Diet (SAD) cause inflammation in the body, and if consumed in large amounts over time can lead to heart disease and even autoimmune diseases.

Pescatarian foods, on the other hand, such as cod, salmon, pasture-raised eggs, walnuts and pumpkin seeds contain high amounts of omega-3s and can help lower inflammation in the body. Creating a diet with these foods at the center can lead to increased energy, health and even weight loss.

2. You’ll improve your blood lipid profile.
Adding fatty fish to your diet even just twice a week can lower triglyceride levels, according to the American Heart Association. And a study done by the University of Eastern Finland found that increasing fatty fish intake to three or four meals per week increased HDL concentrations. HDL is the good cholesterol that helps protect against heart disease.

3. You’ll get your vitamins D and B-12.
On a strict vegan or vegetarian diet it can be tough to get vitamins D and B-12. Vitamin D is essential for teeth and bone health as well as for keeping your immune system in check. Vitamin B-12 is required for energy production.

Sardines, salmon, tuna and cod all rank higher than land animals as sources of vitamin B-12, and salmon ranks higher than cow milk as a good source of vitamin D.

For the full article, head on over to Livestrong.com to find out the last 4 reasons…

Interested in trying a Pescatarian diet? If so, I’ve created a 21 Day Strong, Safe & Sexy Pescatarian and Gluten-free diet that I used on ABC’s weight-loss competition TV show, My Diet is Better Than Yours.


  • Debra Hughes says:

    Hi Jennifer,

    I saw the MDIBTY show last night and wanted to back you up. I’ve been a trainer for the past 15 years, and from the first show, it was clearly apparent that Taj was a handful. It wouldn’t have mattered who her trainer was, or the diet plan, she has a lot of internal work to do. You handled the situation with grace and professionalism. You were more than patient with her when she quit on the track run early in the show. Every trainer knows too well the people who continue to get in their own way and then blame everyone else for their failures. In a normal setting (not TV) the trainer can opt out and drop the client, i think the show needed that option as well. You have an opportunity now to educate people about this problem and make getting therapy a positive rather than a negative. It was great that Shaun T admitted he’d been to a therapist. It appeared more on that was said and was edited out of the show. Too bad.
    I just wanted to tell you it was obvious the problem was with her and not you.
    All the Best,

    • Ariana says:

      I totally agree. Taj is obviously going through personal stuff, and maybe because of that she was not willing to put all her effort in. I don’t know, only taj knows. But I love the way you handled it and I don’t think you did anything wrong. And there’s nothing wrong with counseling. Millions of people need it, it can be a very helpful tool. I wish I could train with you!

  • Cyndee says:

    I agree wholeheartedly with Debra and just want to support you. You were so professional and handled yourself with grace. Cyndee

  • Jackie says:

    I agree. I think it’s a darn shame that you were stuck with a client who didn’t even care. I would be so honored to work with you. Thank you for your dedication to making people strong, safe, and sexy! I cannot wait to try your workouts!

  • Cookie says:

    Totally agree with the above. You handled yourself very well. Sadly Taj does have things that she has to workout for herself until then she will not be happy or succeed in living a healthier lifestyle.

    I would LOVE the chance to work with you. I loved you style from the beginning. ??

    I hope to see more of you on future shows!!!!!

  • LeAnn says:

    I loved watching you push your client to past their comfort zone. For the yellow belt it was a proud moment I thought she would be proud that she did it. Your plan was working and making her accountable. Some people don’t like to be accountable for themselves. Thank you for sharing your diet plan my husband and I enjoyed your philosophy.

  • gina says:

    You asked what your readers thought of the Pescatarian diet. It sounded good to me. The only meat I eat right now is ground turkey or turkey sausages. I’m sure not the best, but I quit eating any other kind of meat years ago. I’m diabetic and so have to watch what I eat any way. I’ve always been leary of any type of sea food bought from the store. I like true cod and would possably try some of the others, but I don’t care much for salmon. Any way, the diet sounds like some thing I would try. I’m terrible about change so this is some thing I would have to think about. Just wanted to drop you a line and answer your question about what I thought about the diet.

Leave a Reply