The Nutritional value of snails

Snails are considered a delicacy for connoisseurs all over the world. They are increasingly appreciated for their culinary and nutritional value, as they are comprised of nutrients high in essential amino acids, and beneficial fatty acids; as well as being low in calories. The latest studies have found that snail meat is one of the positive nutritional aspects of the Mediterranean diet.
The calorific value of snail meat is 750 calories per kilo of meat when ready for consumption, lower than the meat of various fish, birds, and mammals. The protein content is high and ranges at around 15% of the net weight. Carbohydrates make up 2% and the percentage of fat is only 1% of the total net weight. The water content is high and ranges from 73% – 89%.

Omega 3 – Omega 6 Fatty Acids: The compositional analysis of lipids provides for a relatively high percentage of poly-unsaturated fatty acids. Specifically, total saturated lipids occupy 25.78%, mono-unsaturated constitute 18.55%, and polyunsaturated constitute the remaining 18%. From the poly-unsaturated the ratio omega-3 / omega-6 ranges from 0.2 to 2 which, based on current nutritional knowledge is considered to be very good and comparable to fish (from 0.5 to 8).It should be emphasized, that snail fat is beneficial because it provides the body with Ω-3 fatty acids, which are considered to be essential as humans are unable to synthesize this and it must therefore be taken through diet. They offer many benefits to health, as they are assumed to inhibit atherosclerosis and thrombosis and even have anti-inflammatory effects, preventing allergies, depression, and other diseases of the nervous system.

As far as minerals (metals) are concerned, snail meat is a good source of calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, and sodium. Some researchers suggest snail consumption as an alternative source of calcium and phosphorus, two very important ingredients for bone growth.
With regards to micronutrients, the meat of these species is a good source of selenium (27.4 mg/100mg), providing the consumer with virtually 50% of the daily recommended intake amount required for an adult woman (which is 50 mg / day) and 1/3 for a man. Selenium has powerful antioxidant properties protecting against heart disease and cancer (especially prostate), also contributing to a well-functioning thyroid gland and immune system.
Apart from the aforementioned, snail flesh is a major dietary source of vitamins. Niacin is a water soluble vitamin B complex with beneficial effects on the nervous and cardiovascular system. It is remarkably stable and resistant to heat, cooking and food storage. The content of meat to niacin is 1,4 mg/100g of the edible meat consumption and corresponds to 50 g of cheese and 150 g of, yogurt, lentils or potatoes which are considered to be good sources of this vitamin.
Snail flesh contains the lowest cholesterol of all meat. The cholesterol in cooked snails is due to the spices we use to cook them.