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Roe vs Caviar - Health impact and Nutrition Comparison

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Article author photo Elen Khachatrian by Elen Khachatrian | Last updated on March 31, 2022
Education: Nutrition & Microbiology at YSU
Roe
vs
Caviar

SUMMARY

Caviar is considered a type of roe from the sturgeon family.

Although all fish eggs are called "roe," not all "roe" is caviar.

Roe has lower sugars, sodium, and cholesterol than caviar. It is also high in selenium, Vitamin B12, and phosphorus.

On the other hand, Caviar has a lower glycemic index, more Vitamin A, Vitamin B5, iron, and magnesium than roe does.

Introduction

Roe and caviar are pretty similar, but they also have specific differences. Today, we will discuss the main differences in nutritional and health aspects of roe and caviar.

What's the Actual Difference?

As said above caviar is just a type of roe from the sturgeon family.

The term caviar only refers to the roe of fish in the Acipenseridae family of sturgeons.

Caviar is salted roe from specific types of fish discovered in the Black and Caspian Seas.

NUTRITION

Caviar and roe are rich in healthy compounds and macronutrients. To better understand the main differences between them, we created nutritional infographics at the bottom of this page.

Vitamins

Roe and caviar are rich in vitamins.

Roe contains more Vitamin C, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, B3, and folate, but it lacks Vitamin E and Vitamin D.

Caviar contains more Vitamin A, Vitamin B5, Vitamin B6, and Vitamin B12. The amount of Vitamin B5 is two times higher in caviar than in roe. Also, caviar contains Vitamin E and Vitamin D but lacks Vitamin C [3].

Vitamin Comparison

Vitamin comparison score is based on the number of vitamins by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" chart below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food
Roe
5
:
7
Caviar
Contains more Vitamin C +∞%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +45.8%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +53.1%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +1726.7%
Contains more Folate +84%
Contains more Vitamin A +198.7%
Contains more Vitamin B5 +203.3%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +73%
Contains more Vitamin B12 +73.3%
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Vitamin K 19% 0% 0% 55% 70% 219% 42% 70% 43% 69% 1443% 0%
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Vitamin K 55% 38% 87% 0% 48% 144% 3% 210% 74% 38% 2500% 2%
Contains more Vitamin C +∞%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +45.8%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +53.1%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +1726.7%
Contains more Folate +84%
Contains more Vitamin A +198.7%
Contains more Vitamin B5 +203.3%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +73%
Contains more Vitamin B12 +73.3%

Minerals

Both roe and caviar are rich in minerals. Mainly, roe is rich in copper, potassium, zinc, and phosphorus and contains less sodium than caviar.

Caviar has more iron, magnesium, and calcium than the roe.

The amounts of magnesium and iron are almost ten times higher in caviar than in roe. Besides, one serving of caviar contains 30% of your daily iron requirement. It is important to note that caviar contains high sodium, more than 97% of foods.

Mineral Comparison

Mineral comparison score is based on the number of minerals by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" chart below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food
Roe
5
:
3
Caviar
Contains more Phosphorus +44.7%
Contains more Potassium +56.4%
Contains less Sodium -92.2%
Contains more Zinc +34.7%
Contains more Copper +16.4%
Contains more Calcium +882.1%
Contains more Iron +1442.9%
Contains more Magnesium +1053.8%
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper 9% 29% 19% 221% 25% 16% 35% 43%
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper 83% 446% 215% 153% 16% 196% 26% 37%
Contains more Phosphorus +44.7%
Contains more Potassium +56.4%
Contains less Sodium -92.2%
Contains more Zinc +34.7%
Contains more Copper +16.4%
Contains more Calcium +882.1%
Contains more Iron +1442.9%
Contains more Magnesium +1053.8%

Carbohydrates

Caviar contains more carbs than roe: 4g per 100g, while roe has 1.92g per 100g. All that carbs are net carbs.

Protein

Caviar and roe are rich in high-quality protein. Caviar provides 24.6 g per 100g, and roe has 28.62g per 100g.

They both fall in the range of the top 13% of foods as a source of protein.

Fats

Caviar has a two times higher number of fats than the roe.

It provides 17.9g per 100g, while roe has 8.23g per 100g. Caviar falls in the range of the top 18% of foods as a source of fats.

Both foods are rich in omega-3 fatty acids and have no trans fats.

Cholesterol

Caviar and roe have a high level of cholesterol. They fall in the range of the top 5% of foods as a source of cholesterol.

Caviar has 479mg cholesterol per 100g, and roe has 588mg cholesterol per 100g.

Calories

Both of these foods have almost a similar number of calories. Caviar contains 204 calories per 100 g, whereas roe contains 264 calories per 100 g. Slightly notes; as people usually consume these foods in tiny amounts.

Glycemic Index

The glycemic index of caviar is lower than that of roe. The difference between them is about 27.

Health Benefits

Both caviar and roe contain omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals, essential for your body.

Cardiovascular Health

Caviar and roe are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Research suggests that fish eggs rich in omega-3 fatty acids may benefit health without interfering with standard drug therapies.

In intense, omega-3 fatty acids may aid in blood pressure regulation and reduce the risk of developing heart disease. Consuming two servings of fatty fish per week may help avoid cardiovascular problems.

Furthermore, these organic acids may lower heart rate and blood vessel tightness, resulting in lower blood pressure and triglyceride levels and an increase in HDL (good) cholesterol levels [1].

Joints Health

Studies on fish eggs have not been conducted but on the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish eggs and other seafood. Researchers believe that omega-3 fatty acids found in fish and fish eggs may help to alleviate rheumatoid arthritis symptoms. Fish eggs containing omega-3 fatty acids may also be anti-inflammatory and inhibit the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines [2].

Brain and Mental Health

Because the brain uses omega-3 fatty acids to build brain and nerve cells, fish eggs rich in omega-3 fatty acids are essential for learning and memory. It has been proposed that decreasing brain inflammation can slow the mental health decline seen in Alzheimer's disease [3].

Furthermore, Omega-3 fatty acids may be beneficial during the depressive phase of bipolar disorder. People who suffer from depression have lower omega-3 fatty acid levels, implying that a lack of this nutrient may be a risk factor for depression [4].

Boost Immune System

Fish eggs contain omega-3 fatty acids and selenium, which may benefit your immune system. Omega-3 fatty acids reduce inflammation and restore the barrier function of your skin, intestines, and lungs, which helps to keep harmful bacteria at bay and keeps you healthy.

Caviar is high in iron, zinc, and magnesium, both of which have antioxidant properties and may help lower oxidative stress levels in the body, reduce inflammation, and boost immunity [5].

Eye Health

Omega-3 fatty acids may aid in preventing and treating a variety of eye diseases. Consuming omega-3 fatty acids, whether in foods or as a supplement, may help reduce macular degeneration and glaucoma. According to research, omega-3 fatty acids in fish eggs can help reduce your risk of developing dry eyes, and they may also help treat bothersome symptoms. Consuming omega-3 fatty acids, whether in foods or as a supplement, may help reduce macular degeneration and glaucoma.

Moreover, omega-3 fatty acids may also aid in the prevention of high eye pressure, which can lead to glaucoma [6].

Downsides and Risks

Allergy

Fish allergy is one of the most common food allergies, affecting one percent of the US population. A person who is allergic to fish may be allergic to fish eggs as well.

When a person with a fish allergy is exposed to that fish, proteins in the fish bind to specific IgE antibodies produced by the person's immune system, activating the person's immune defenses and resulting in mild to severe reaction symptoms [7].

Adverse Effects

Fish eggs are high in cholesterol and sodium.

If you are watching your cholesterol or limiting your salt intake, you should consult with your doctor to see if you can eat them on occasion. Remember that fish eggs are high in purines, which can be problematic if you have gout.

Varieties and Uses

Different types of sturgeon produce different types of caviar. Osetra, beluga, sevruga, and Siberian caviar are among them. Typically made entirely of sturgeon fish eggs, these eggs are cured and then placed in tins for aging and storage.

Roe is the term for female fish eggs, which can come from various fish, including trout, whitefish, salmon, and even carp and shellfish. The size, texture, and color of fish eggs can vary.

When serving fish eggs, use a spoon made of wood rather than metal, as metal can impart a metallic flavor to the delicate flavor. Caviar is a luxury food and delicacy that is very expensive.

Many people enjoy roe with creme fraiche on top of blini, toast, or a cucumber slice. Fish eggs are also used as a garnish on many restaurant dishes and a significant component in some sushi rolls.

References

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3712371/
  2. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28816722/
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7468918/
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6713969/
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6834330/
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7230711/
  7. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27613460/
Article author photo Elen Khachatrian
Education: Nutrition & Microbiology at YSU
Last updated: March 31, 2022

Infographic

Roe vs Caviar infographic
Infographic link

Comparison summary table

Pay attention to the most right column. It shows the amounts side by side, making it easier to realize the amount of difference.
Roe Caviar
Lower in Sugar ok
Lower in Sodium ok
Lower in Cholesterol ok
Lower in Saturated Fat ok
Lower in glycemic index ok
Lower in price Equal
Rich in minerals Equal
Rich in vitamins Equal

All nutrients comparison - raw data values

Nutrient Roe Caviar Opinion
Net carbs 1.92g 4g Caviar
Protein 28.62g 24.6g Roe
Fats 8.23g 17.9g Caviar
Carbs 1.92g 4g Caviar
Calories 204kcal 264kcal Caviar
Starch g g
Fructose g g
Sugar g 0g Roe
Fiber 0g 0g
Calcium 28mg 275mg Caviar
Iron 0.77mg 11.88mg Caviar
Magnesium 26mg 300mg Caviar
Phosphorus 515mg 356mg Roe
Potassium 283mg 181mg Roe
Sodium 117mg 1500mg Roe
Zinc 1.28mg 0.95mg Roe
Copper 0.128mg 0.11mg Roe
Vitamin A 303IU 905IU Caviar
Vitamin E mg 1.89mg Caviar
Vitamin D IU 117IU Caviar
Vitamin D µg 2.9µg Caviar
Vitamin C 16.4mg 0mg Roe
Vitamin B1 0.277mg 0.19mg Roe
Vitamin B2 0.949mg 0.62mg Roe
Vitamin B3 2.192mg 0.12mg Roe
Vitamin B5 1.154mg 3.5mg Caviar
Vitamin B6 0.185mg 0.32mg Caviar
Folate 92µg 50µg Roe
Vitamin B12 11.54µg 20µg Caviar
Vitamin K µg 0.6µg Caviar
Tryptophan 0.375mg 0.323mg Roe
Threonine 1.305mg 1.263mg Roe
Isoleucine 1.465mg 1.035mg Roe
Leucine 2.509mg 2.133mg Roe
Lysine 2.179mg 1.834mg Roe
Methionine 0.71mg 0.646mg Roe
Phenylalanine 1.401mg 1.071mg Roe
Valine 1.676mg 1.263mg Roe
Histidine 0.778mg 0.649mg Roe
Cholesterol 479mg 588mg Roe
Trans Fat g g
Saturated Fat 1.866g 4.06g Roe
Monounsaturated Fat 2.129g 4.631g Caviar
Polyunsaturated fat 3.404g 7.405g Caviar

Which food is preferable for your diet?

ok
ok
is better in case of low diet
Roe Caviar
Low Fats diet ok
Low Carbs diet ok
Low Calories diet ok
Low glycemic index diet ok

People also compare

Vitamin and Mineral Summary Scores

The summary score is calculated by summing up the daily values contained in 300 grams of the product. Obviously the more the food fulfills human daily needs, the more the summary score is.
Vitamin Summary Score
169
Roe
266
Caviar
Mineral Summary Score
49
Roe
146
Caviar

Macronutrients Comparison

Macronutrient comparison charts compare the amount of protein, total fats, and total carbohydrates in 300 grams of the food. The displayed values show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of food.
Protein
172%
Roe
148%
Caviar
Carbohydrates
2%
Roe
4%
Caviar
Fats
38%
Roe
83%
Caviar

Comparison summary

Which food is lower in Sugar?
Roe
Roe is lower in Sugar (difference - 0g)
Which food contains less Sodium?
Roe
Roe contains less Sodium (difference - 1383mg)
Which food is lower in Cholesterol?
Roe
Roe is lower in Cholesterol (difference - 109mg)
Which food is lower in Saturated Fat?
Roe
Roe is lower in Saturated Fat (difference - 2.194g)
Which food is lower in glycemic index?
Caviar
Caviar is lower in glycemic index (difference - 27)
Which food is cheaper?
?
The foods are relatively equal in price ($100)
Which food is richer in minerals?
?
It cannot be stated which food is richer in vitamins. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information.
Which food is richer in vitamins?
?
It cannot be stated which food is richer in vitamins. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information.

References

The source of all the nutrient values on the page (excluding the main article the sources for which are presented separately if present) is the USDA's FoodCentral. The exact links to the foods presented on this page can be found below.

  1. Roe - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/174239/nutrients
  2. Caviar - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/174188/nutrients

All the Daily Values are presented for males aged 31-50, for 2000 calorie diets.

Data provided by FoodStruct.com should be considered and used as information only. Please consult your physician before beginning any diet.