Omega-3 Fatty Acids are “good fats” your body needs to function optimally, but unfortunately your body doesn’t produce enough of these goodies naturally, requiring supplementation from certain important foods. Omega-3s have various jobs within the body including inflammation reduction, prevention of certain diseases and helping regulate things like hormone production. There are three different types
of Omega-3s: ALA (this one is the most important to consume, as it is an essential fat), DHA and DPA.
Omega-3s for Your Ticker
Omega-3s are very heart-healthy. According to the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
, “These fats appear to help the heart beat at a steady clip and not veer into a dangerous or potentially fatal erratic rhythm. Omega-3 fats also lower blood pressure and heart rate, improve blood vessel function, and, at higher doses, lower triglycerides and may ease inflammation, which plays a role in the development of atherosclerosis.” Omega-3 supplements are often recommended by doctors to patients with cardiovascular problems, or as a preventative measure for those at risk of developing heart issues.
The Benefits Don’t Stop There!
The health benefits Omega-3s
are vast, among them are:
- Helping reduce and control inflammation within the body.
- Easing inflammatory symptoms of diseases such as arthritis and lupus.
- Helping control airway inflammation in asthmatics.
- Some studies seem to show a link between omega-3s found in fish oil and the prevention and progression of Alzheimer’s and dementia.
- These super fats have also shown a positive influence over such mental health conditions as ADHD and depression.
Good Dietary Sources
Because the health benefits of omega-3s are plentiful, doctors recommend everyone try to eat fish, nuts or other omega-3-containing foods daily or several times weekly. Omega-3s can be found in many healthy foods
- Walnuts, pine nuts, almonds and peanuts
- Many sea creatures such as mackerel, salmon, anchovies, herring, oysters, sardines, caviar
- Some oils – sunflower oil, corn oil
- Flaxseeds and chia seeds
- Soybeans and other legumes
- Leafy greens, particularly spinach
If you don’t like many Omega-3 foods, supplements are available to take. However, people with bleeding disorders such as hemophilia should be careful with Omega-3s, as well as people on blood-thinners such as Warfarin. Omega-3s could cause stomach discomfort in some people such as bloating or diarrhea. It is important to consult your primary care physician before beginning supplements of any kind.
Thanks for visiting EMC! We hope to see you again soon!