The next time you are sitting at an oyster bar, such as Flora-Bama, eating copious amounts of either raw or wood fire grilled oysters, consider delivering some impressive facts about the food you are eating. Oysters are more than just tasty morsels you can slurp down your gullet with a bottle of draft beer or a glass of wine or champagne. In fact, there are some facts about oysters that may impress even you.
A Historic Staple Food
Oysters were once considered a staple food in certain regions, particularly New York. Historians and archaeologists report that the Lenape tribe, what some consider the first among native New Yorkers, used to leave large piles of discarded oyster shells on the banks after eating them.
The piles of oyster shells later became known as shell middens. Some of the piles were so tall that they were referred to as "skyscrapers." The oldest pile of shells was located in Dobbs Ferry and dated back to approximately 6950 B.C.
Oysters were consumed at such a rate that oyster habitats began disappearing, thus leading to a cutback to help protect their ecosystems. Therefore, you can tell your friends that before New Yorkers became obsessed with their pizza, cheesecake, and bagels, their true love was the oyster.
A Taste of Love
Casanova is a name synonymous with romance. Perhaps that is why he reportedly consumed 50 oysters for breakfast. Scientific studies have proven that oysters are an aphrodisiac. Oysters contain amino acids that cause the body to release certain hormones related to the reproductive system.
Perhaps Casanova was not really a lady's man after all, but rather under the influence of eating too many oysters. Either way, your friends will surely be impressed by that fun fact.
A Health Benefit
When it comes to your health, you likely focus on consuming important vitamins and minerals such as calcium, iron, vitamin A, vitamin C, and other such well-known components. However, you should not overlook the importance of zinc.
Zinc is known to boost your energy, improve your immune system, provide healthier skin, and improve your senses. When it comes to adding zinc to your diet, the best way to do so is through oyster consumption.
It is recommended that people consume 11 milligrams of zinc daily and a one-ounce oyster contains approximately 8 milligrams of zinc. In other words, now you and your friends have an even better reason to head out to your local oyster bar from some delicious, yet healthy eats.
Another health benefit provided by oysters is the fact that they are often best paired with certain beers, wines, and even champagne. All three beverages offer their own unique health benefits, but they should be consumed responsibly.
Surprisingly, beer can reduce the likelihood of you developing kidney stones. It can also aid with improved digestion and lower cholesterol levels. Champagne is said to improve spatial memory, which is the ability to perform complex tasks and recognize surroundings. Wine can reduce the risk of heart disease and heart attack as well as lower mortality rates by approximately 34%.
A Way of Life
In certain areas of the world, oyster farming is a way of life that contributes to the economy. For example, in Australia's New South Wales, oyster farming is worth an estimated $35 million. It is among the oldest and most beneficial aquaculture industries to the State.
New South Wales has profited off of oyster farming for more than 140 years. Therefore, the next time you are consuming oysters with your friends, whether raw or cooked, consider their history and their benefits and surprise your friends with these few fun facts.