Guardians and elder guardians should drop guardian meat to replace the cod drop. This drop can be eaten raw to restore 1 hunger and 0.2 saturation, but it also inflicts instant damage and gives water breathing for 15 seconds as special effects. When cooked, it will lose its magical effects and restore 4 hunger and 5 saturation. The reason guardian meat restores much less is because guardians are a predator, so they need to consume more food to survive (just like predators in real life, as they only get about 10% of the energy and about 100% of the toxins from eating prey). Cooked guardian can also tame and breed cats.
Guardians dropping blue "fish" used to make sense as guardians are technically fish, but it doesn't add up that guardians drop cod in 1.13+ as they already have a loot table that rarely drops various fish items that the guardians have as a food source. Guardian meat can temporarily save you if you're about to drown in the ocean monument, or it can be used to dive deeper at the cost of losing 2 hearts of health. Cooked guardian meat can also be used as an effective emergency food source, but it is the worst type of cooked meat in the game. Replacing cod as a guardian drop with an item that has unique mechanics will both make more sense and be more useful.
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