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Best Food Sources of Omega 3 Essential Fatty Acids

You have heard the old sayings “you are what you eat” and “food is medicine”. These sayings are quite true since epidemiological studies have proven that populations that consume the most omega 3 in their diets are healthier and have less heart disease. The cultures that consume the highest amount of cold water fatty fish obtain the valuable health benefits of omega 3 and are some of the healthiest societies.

Omega 3s must come from the diet since the body is not capable of producing them. this is why they are called “essential fatty acids”. Omega 3s come from animal and plant sources. The main omega 3s are eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). EPA and DHA come from marine sources and ALA come from plant sources. Marine source EPA and DHA are a much more bio available source of omega 3 than any plant source ALA. ALA is a very inefficient form of omega 3 since only very small amounts of ALA are ever converted to EPA or DHA.

Most nutritional experts agree the health benefits of omega 3 come from consuming more marine fish or omega 3 fish oil. If consuming omega 3 fish oil make sure it is the (rTG) form omega 3 fish oil preferably developed in Norway.

Top omega 3 marine source foods:

  • Mackerel
  • Salmon
  • Sardines
  • Herring
  • Anchovies
  • Tuna

Top omega 3 plant foods:

  • Flaxseed
  • Chia seeds
  • Walnuts
  • Algae
  • Hemp seeds
  • Perilla oil