Nutritious and affordable: 5 Reasons to eat protein-rich basa fish (includes recipes)

Nutritious and affordable: 5 Reasons to eat protein-rich basa fish (includes recipes)

Fish is a popular alternative for people who want to eat healthily and limit their intake of other kinds of meat. A good fish to add to your diet is basa fish, which may not be as well-known as salmon or tuna but is just as nutritious.

Basa fish is a variety of whitefish that is good for your heart and brain health. When cooked, basa fish is moist with a very mild fish flavor!

Basa fish nutritional profile

Basa fish (Pangasius bocourti) is a popular variety of whitefish. It’s commonly found in Southeast Asia and is exported to various parts of the world because it is affordable and nutritious.

Basa fish is a variety of catfish found in Thailand, Vietnam, and other parts of Indochina. It’s popular among consumers because it’s cheaper than most seafood and has a similar flavor and consistency to cod or haddock!

Compared to other kinds of fish, basa fish is cheaper because it’s easier to grow and harvest in the wild. Basa fish is also called river cobbler or swai.

Basa fish feeds primarily on plants and can grow up to four feet in length. The fish is a very competitive product in international export markets. Since it belongs to the catfish family, basa fish is rather popular in the U.S. and the United Kingdom.

Basa fish is nutrient-dense. Like other varieties of whitefish, it is low in calories but high in protein. According to the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) FoodData Central, a 100-gram serving of basa fish or a small filet contains about 88 calories and 13 grams of protein.

The same serving also contains four grams of fat and moderate amounts of sodium and iron. Note that basa fish should be consumed moderately since it contains around 40 mg of cholesterol.

5 Health benefits of basa fish

When consumed as part of a balanced diet, basa fish offers several benefits for your overall health!

It’s a protein-rich superfood

Your body needs protein to produce energy and repair damaged tissue. Consuming basa fish is a great way to increase your protein intake. It can also help you avoid the “crash” common in carb-heavy diets.

Eat several servings of a high-protein fish like basa weekly to maintain your energy levels.

It can help boost your heart health

Omega-3 fatty acids can help protect your heart health. Basa fish contains four grams of fat per serving. Fortunately, most of the fat content of basa fish is made up of beneficial omega-3s.

Basa fish contains both docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EHA), two of the best fatty acids for your overall well-being.

It can promote brain health

A study on basa fish found that it is full of DHA. Aside from promoting brain health, DHA can also help reduce your risk of developing degenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

It helps boost muscle and cell growth

Protein provides your body with amino acids, the building blocks of cells and fiber in the body. A regular supply of protein from your diet is essential for the repair of damaged muscles. Protein also helps your muscles develop and continue growing.

Since basa fish is a complete protein, it provides your body with all nine essential amino acids that your body cannot produce on its own.

These essential amino acids include:

  • Histidine
  • Isoleucine
  • Leucine
  • Lysine
  • Phenylalanine
  • Threonine
  • Tryptophan
  • Valine

It promotes weight loss

Basa fish is the perfect food to eat if you want to lose weight. Despite being low-calorie, basa fish can give you energy, protein and nutrients.

Considerations when buying basa fish

Like other superfoods, you need to be careful when buying basa fish. While studies have shown that eating more basa than other fish is safe, you must avoid basa fish grown in fish farms because they’re often treated with harmful chemicals.

Basa fish recipes to try

You can buy basa fish in the form of boneless filets.

Simple baked basa fish

Basa is a rather delicate whitefish that can be baked before serving.


  • 4-5 ounces basa fish filets
  • Cornmeal
  • Dried herb mixture
  • Olive oil
  • Lemon (for garnishing)
  • Parsley (for garnishing)
  • Ground black pepper
  • Salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the cornmeal, dried herbs, salt and pepper.
  2. Season the fish by coating it in the herb mixture.
  3. After seasoning the fish, place the basa filets on an oiled cooking sheet.
  4. Let the fish bake for 15 to 20 minutes.
  5. Once cooked, let the fish cool for two to three minutes.
  6. Serve the basa fish filets with lemon garnish and fresh parsley.

Spicy basa fish filets

This recipe modifies the basic basa fish recipe and adds a kick of spice with curry and turmeric!

Ingredients for 10 servings:

  • 5 large basa fish fillets
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons of curry powder
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons of black pepper
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons of salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 5 tablespoons of olive oil
  • Juice from 1 lemon


  1. Dry the fish fillets with a paper towel or a clean tea towel.
  2. Combine the spices and salt. Sprinkle the spice mix to coat the fillets. Coat both sides completely.
  3. In a large skillet or pan, heat the olive oil over medium to high heat. Place the coated fillets in the skillet, then cook for five to six minutes per side or until cooked through.
  4. Serve with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.

Tips for easy prep:

  • To keep the fish from sticking to the pan, make sure the fillets are as dry as you can make them.
  • Coat the pan evenly with the oil before adding the filets.
  • The heat should be medium to high. Wait until the oil simmers slightly before adding the basa. Start cooking when the oil is slightly smoky.
  • Don’t move the filet once it’s in the pan because it might break apart. Let the fish sit. When it’s nice and brown, you can easily flip it over.
  • Use a very thin spatula when cooking.

Try the new recipes above and cook basa fish, an affordable variety of catfish that’s low in calories but rich in protein!

Stop Human ‘Fetal Farming’ Before it Starts

A pro-life campaigner displays a plastic doll representing a 12-week-old fetus as she stands outside the Marie Stopes Clinic in Belfast, Northern Ireland on April 7, 2016. (Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)

A pro-life campaigner displays a plastic doll representing a 12-week-old fetus as she stands outside the Marie Stopes Clinic in Belfast, Northern Ireland on April 7, 2016. (Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)

Wesley J. Smith

Wesley J. Smith


The news rocked the scientific world. Mouse embryos were successfully developed half-way through the normal gestation period using artificial wombs. Scientists were ecstatic. The New York Times reported: “The mouse embryos looked perfectly normal. All their organs were developing as expected, along with their limbs and circulatory and nervous systems. Their tiny hearts were beating at a normal 170 beats per minute.”

Meanwhile, scientists involved in human embryonic research are moving at a fast pace toward the same place as the mouse artificial uterus experimenters. Researchers currently work under a voluntary guideline known as the “14-day rule” that requires embryo experimenters to cease their studies and destroy their research embryos after two weeks.

When enacted, the rule was much less than met the eye since scientists could not maintain embryos outside a woman’s body for longer than two weeks anyway. Thus, scientists pulled a fast one. They assured a wary public that their work would be strictly limited in scope without giving up anything that they could then actually accomplish.

Such experimentation has now proceeded to the point that embryos will soon be able to be maintained for longer than 14 days. And surprise, surprise! “The scientists” now want to trash the 14-day rule and allow nascent human life to be experimented upon much farther along in their development. Such processes will almost surely require using artificial wombs.

Much of this future experimentation will involve learning how to eugenically manipulate babies. From the MIT Technology Report story on growing calls to trash the 14-Day Rule: “Scientists are motivated to grow embryos longer in order to study—and potentially manipulate—the development process…New experiments “might ignite abortion debates,” especially if the researchers develop human embryos to the point where they take on recognizable characteristics like a head, beating heart cells, or the beginning of limbs.”

It should stimulate debate! We are not talking about “beating heart cells” but the human hearts of nascent human beings. And contrary to the Technology Report story, these ethical questions have nothing whatsoever to do with abortion since no woman would be required or asked to do anything with her body. The question that these experiments thus force us to face—and answer—is whether unborn human life has any intrinsic moral value, and if so, its extent.

Some pro-lifers hope this technology could save babies from abortion. But before we even get to that issue, the question has to be considered whether developing human artificial wombs could even be accomplished ethically.

Frankly, I don’t see how. Perfecting such a machine would entail the mass creation of human embryos and their repeated destruction in experiments as researchers strived to maintain the embryos for ever-longer time periods, indeed, eventually well into the fetal stage.

This would be human experimentation of the rankest sort, with living fetuses maintained in an artificial environment, not for the purpose of being born or learning how to save babies in danger of being stillborn—but also as being akin to lab rats, for example, used as sources of organs for transplantation, a prospect already discussed in bioethics known as “fetal farming.”

Are we really willing to go that far? I fear we may because we already have.

Back in the late 60s, researchers conducted experiments on born “aborted” infants kept alive for experimentation. Please excuse the graphic description of one of these experiments that follow as reported by Pamela R. Winnick in her book “A Jealous God.”

She writes: “In a 1968 study called the ‘Artificial Placenta,’ a twenty-six-week-old fetus, weighing more than a pound, was obtained from a fourteen-year-old girl, presumably from a therapeutic abortion. Along with fourteen other fetuses, it was immersed in a liquid containing oxygen and kept alive for a full five hours.”

Winnick then quoted from the study itself: “For the whole 5 hours of life, the fetus did not respire. Irregular grasping movements, twice a minute occurred in the middle of the experiment but there was not proper respiration. Once the profusion [pumping in of oxygenated blood] was stopped, however, the gasping respiratory efforts increased to 8 to 10 per minute…After stopping the circuit, the heart slowed, became irregular, and eventually stopped…The fetus was quiet, making occasional stretching limb movements very much like the ones reported in other human work…[T]he fetus died 21 minutes after leaving the circuit.”

After these ghoulish experiments became known publicly, they were stopped by an outraged Congress–led by Senator Ted Kennedy, of all people–which prevented National Institutes of Health funding of such experiments.

But that was when the sanctity of life held greater sway. Would the country erupt in the same revulsion today at such experiments? I wonder.

Indeed, the ground is already being prepared to permit experiments on living fetuses to resume. For example, Vermont recently enacted a statute that states, “A fertilized egg, embryo, or fetus shall not have independent rights under Vermont law.” Again, this has nothing to do with abortion. That provision can only mean that an embryo or fetus can be put to any instrumental use whatsoever without legal consequence.

The time to decide whether we want to go down this utilitarian road should be before we actually get there, not when the ethical crisis is upon us and there is no time to think. At the very least, we need to enact a legally enforceable moratorium preventing live fetal experimentation to give the world time to sort out the ethics of pursuing such technologies in humans through democratic deliberation. Just floating along and letting “the scientists” decide the moral propriety of fetal farming simply will not do.

Award-winning author Wesley J. Smith is chairman of the Discovery Institute’s Center on Human Exceptionalism.

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.