Oysters Are Good for You
Oysters are high in protein, low in fat, contain Omega-3 fatty acids, and offer essential minerals, especially iron, zinc, and copper, plus vitamin B12. There are many stories but no scientific papers asserting that oysters are an aphrodisiac. Maybe it’s the zinc that led to the idea that they heighten sex appeal: zinc is linked to healing, fetal development, and a healthy sperm count.
Some people are afraid of eating raw shellfish, and health authorities advise people with compromised immune systems to be especially careful about eating any raw food. In general, however, an oyster grown in clean waters and properly handled after harvest is not a risky food to eat. Regulations help ensure the safety of oysters—the Department of Marine Fisheries and Wellfleet’s Shellfish Constable check the waters regularly for bacteria, and shellfish cultivation is carefully monitored, as are the harvested shellfish. Make sure you buy your oysters from a reputable source, and make sure they are alive when you buy them: good oysters are heavy, never gaping open, and full of their delicious “liquor.”