Prevalence of Seafood Consumption among United States Adults, 2013–2014

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Seafood is an important part of a healthy diet, and a cultural staple. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans acknowledge the importance of seafood in the American diet. This paper examines the proportion of United States adults who report eating any fish, shellfish, or seafood by sociodemographic and health-related characteristics. Using the 2013–2014 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) data, this paper analyzes non-pregnant adults, 20 years of age and older who reported consuming any fish or shellfish during the last thirty days. Nearly 71 percent of respondents indicated consuming fish, 53 percent reported consuming shellfish, and 80 percent reported consuming seafood. Respondent’s odds of reporting having eaten seafood increase with age and education for those who identify as non-Hispanic Black, non-Hispanic Asian, and Hispanics/Latino(s) compared to their non-Hispanic White counterparts. Health related variables including body mass index, sleep issues, depression, and whether or not one currently smokes do not affect the odds of fish, shellfish, or seafood consumption. Given the importance of seafood for a healthy diet, more targeted efforts for less educated, younger, and lower income individuals are needed to increase exposure to various types of fish and shellfish. Additionally, seafood options that are more readily available in a variety of venues can promote intake, but any increase in seafood production should be achieved in ways that are both environmentally and economically sustainable.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalFood Studies
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2020


  • Consumption
  • Fish
  • Seafood
  • Shellfish


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