The mussel Mytilus edulis is a bi-valve filter feader in the Phylum:Mollusca. It is a marine creature which latches itself to rocks or other substrates within the sea in order to feed, grow and reproduce. Now we are just passing the middle of mussel season which runs from September to around April. In April they begin to spawn (release eggs) at this time they are not so good to eat as all their nutrients have been used for reproduction. By law all bivalves have to be washed in filtration tanks under a UV light to kill off any nasty bacteria/ virus’. They are cultivated all around the UK on socks/ropes or on the seabeds. I’ve been told that bed grown mussels tend to be better as they have to deal with being out of water when the tide goes out; this strengthens them. This makes they’re more plump and tasty. In contrast, rope grown mussels tend to be less flavoursome, due to the fact they have not had to adapt to being out in the air at low tide so often!
Mussels are a rich source of dietary DHA (Docosahexaenoic acid) . This is an omega-3 fatty acid, very important for the heart, brain and eye health. Mussels are super nutrient dense with good levels of:
Zinc: Is an essential trace mineral, important for immune system function. It is also a potent antioxidant, neutralising free radicals that may contribute to heart disease. Research has shown that it may be very important for the release of calcium stores which move into heart cells. Correct control of these calcium gates (type-2 ryanodine receptors (RyR2) is necessary to prevent heart failure or irregular heart beats. Patients with congestive heart failure have been shown to have zinc deficiency. Zinc is involved in more enzymatic reactions in the body than any other mineral.
Selenium: Important antioxidant to protect DNA from damage. It fights cancer and protects against carcinogens by helping to produce a free radical scavenger called glutathione peroxidase.
Iron : This heme iron in the body is essential for the blood to carry oxygen. Women require nearly twice as much as men per day, until menopause. Sea food is a good source for this
Copper: Important for the myelin sheath which protects our nerves from electromagnetic fields. Alternation magnetic fields deplete this element.
B12: Vitamin B-12 is especially important for vegetarians who may be deficient in this vitamin. Important for red cell production. Important for maintaining the nervous system and mood regulation. B12 keeps homocysteine (a natural substance in the blood) levels in check; if this gets too high it can cause heart disease.
Iodine: Iodine is a trace element important to support the thyroid. An iodine deficiency can cause a slower heart rate. Having adequate amounts of iodine also lowers your risk of diabetes, heart disease and stroke.
If you have any kind of heart condition sea food needs to be high on your list for nutritional priorities. There are more mitochondria in the heart and brain than in other areas of the body. These energy factories for your cells require DHA for their membranes (minos layer) as do your cells. The healthier the membrane the better the cell can function. The retinal pathway (in the eye) is where sunlight enters your body and tells the SCN (Suprachiasmatic Nucleus) in the Hypothalamus to control your circadian rhythm. Basically giving the correct day night cycles to run on. This body clock (SCN) must run faster than all the others. This intern sets the other body clocks and that of your mitochondria. So your body is synchronised, autonomously working in harmony, all its parts. The retinal pathway requires DHA to function correctly; many hormones need to be made in the eyes in the morning via sunlight. DHA makes the cells better able to conduct DC electricity (electrons better). If you live in the northern hemisphere, sea food with this fat, is even more important. It helps your cells to run more efficiently in a cold low light environment. If you live at the equator where you have all round sun less DHA is required. You need less of it, as you have the sun to provide your body with a plentiful supply of electrons to help with energy production. DHA increases your redox potential (helps your body hang on to electrons) giving you a greater negative charge. Increasing your magnetic field. This means that your body will be able to regenerate itself better within our world of artificial EMFs which lowers our electrons, causing more sickness (inflammation). Artificial blue light at the wrong time of day, like in the evening after the sun has gone down, can inhibit melatonin production for sleep. This causes oxidative stress (more loss of electrons).
Attaining all your essential nutrients from food is the best way to get them and not in supplement form, as this is not natural to the body. Although sometimes, as with myself it has been necessary. Ultimately, we need to get in natural sunlight more and totally reduce our exposure to non-native EMFs.
If you fancy trying mussels, I would recommend going out to a good sea food restaurant first to see if you like them. If you do like them and you’re keen to have a go at cooking them yourself? Then please read on:
We tend to cook them, my wife and I about once or twice a month at this time of year! We cook them the French way with dry white wine, cream, butter, shallots and parsley. Magnifique! Some people have them with fries ‘moules et frites’. However, being heart healthy I try to limit the fried foods. So we have steamed potatoes with them or just a little sourdough bread. Added to this, maybe a little white wine too! Well, if you want to get started to cook them yourself, you will first need to find a good, reputable fish monger! By that, I do not mean going to your supermarket! No, you need to find someone local who specialises just in seafood, and is passionate about what they do and sell. After asking around you will get to know of a good place I am sure! I would suggest a kilo is enough for two people! Once you have your mussels you can keep them in the fridge for the day until in use, or if you must, for the next day but no longer! Best to cook them on the same day! I have made a video below if you are interested in following a quick French recipe ‘Moules Mariniere!’ What ever you do, I Hope you will enjoy them! God bless!