The bonito is a type of schooling predatory fish that belongs to the Mackerel family. In Bulgaria, young bonitos are also known by the name gypsy. It should be noted that the name of this type of fish covers as many as four subspecies – Australian, Oriental, Chilean and Atlantic bonito.

It is the last subspecies of this fish, which mainly inhabits the coastal waters of Africa, America and Europe, that is on the Bulgarian table. In the north it reaches southern Norway and England. The habitat area of ​​the bonito is also the Mediterranean and the Black Sea.

As this fish is carnivorous, it feeds on anchovies, mackerel, sardines, saffron and is extremely gluttonous. Up to 75 anchovies can be found in the stomach of one bonito.

With a weight of 7 kilograms, this fish can reach a length of up to 85 centimeters, however, its standard sizes are about 3-4 kilograms and no more than 60-65 centimeters.

Nutritional value of bonito meat (100 grams)

• Protein – 22.4 grams;
• Fat – 14.2 grams, of which saturated fatty acids are 3.3 grams;
• Carbohydrates – 0 grams;
• Mineral salts – 1 gram;
• Water – 62.4 grams;
• Cholesterol – 80 mg;
• Calorie content – ​​217 kilocalories;


• Nicotinic acid /B3/ – 12.6 mg;
• Tocopherol /E/ – 1.3 mg;
• Ascorbic acid /C/ – 0.9 mg;
• Folic acid /B9/ – 4 μg;
• Pyridoxine /B6/ – 0.6 mg;
• Riboflavin /B2/ – 0.13;
• Thiamine /B1/ – 0.27;
• Retinol – 20 micrograms ;

Mineral substances

• Potassium – 300 mg;
• Sodium – 70 mg;
• Magnesium – 35 mg;
• Sulfur – 170 mg;

Beneficial properties

The bonito meat has good nutritional qualities. It is quite fatty (up to 12% fat accumulates in the meat of the Black Sea bonito in autumn) and is usually consumed in canned and smoked form.

The Chilean bonito is especially valuable because of its tasty and tender meat, which, although it has a specific taste, is lost when properly heat-treated.

This fish has high commercial qualities also due to its rich chemical composition. Its meat contains chlorine, sodium, sulfur, zinc, manganese, fluorine, phosphorus, iodine, potassium, which are necessary for the maintenance of good health of the human body. In addition, some vitamins of group B, A, C, E, PP are also present in the composition of bonito meat.

The benefit of the meat of this fish is also determined by its ability to stimulate the formation of hemoglobin in the blood, which is also due to the increase in the activity of protein synthesis.

Furthermore, regular consumption of this fish improves tissue regeneration and also the general condition of the brain and spinal cord. Substances in the composition of bonito meat are involved in the transport of vital oxygen molecules to the cells.

Due to its many beneficial properties, this fish is recommended to be included in the diet of pregnant women, nursing mothers and children of different age groups.

In addition to valuable fats, bonito contains many animal proteins, which are practically completely absorbed by the human body.


The use of this marine fish is not recommended for people who have a personal intolerance to its meat. Smoked, marinated and very fatty fish is harmful for people with diseases of the liver, kidneys, digestive and cardiovascular systems, but in cooked form, not very fatty bonito is extremely useful.

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